July 15, 2021 | By a Falun Dafa practitioner in Chicago
Falun Dafa practitioners in Chicago gathered in front of the Chinese Consulate to commemorate their fellow practitioners who have died as a result of the Chinese Communist Party’s (CCP) brutality and to peacefully protest the 22-year-long persecution on July 10, 2021.
They did the Falun Dafa exercises, held banners and in the evening they held a candlelight vigil. They told passersby about the persecution and the true nature of the CCP. They called on people to help stop the CCP’s persecution.
Jiang Zemin, the then head of the CCP, initiated the persecution on July 20, 1999. Millions of practitioners were arrested, sentenced to prison, tortured, and even subjected to forced organ harvesting. The CCP continues this persecution today. Many more practitioners have been arrested, imprisoned, or tortured to death.
Despite this ongoing brutality, Falun Dafa practitioners uphold their belief in Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance and clarify the truth to people. Their peaceful efforts have won the support and admiration of people around the world.
The Illinois House of Representatives issued resolution HR0029 to condemn the CCP’s persecution. The resolution states, “July 20, 2021 will mark 22 years since the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) launched a systematic and brutal campaign to ‘eradicate’ the spiritual discipline of Falun Gong, a traditional Buddhist-based meditation practice whose core principles are truthfulness, compassion, and tolerance.” “The CCP’s mass campaign to vilify and eradicate Falun Gong and its core values of truthfulness, compassion, and tolerance is also an attack on the conscience of humanity…”
A gentle drizzle enveloped Chicago as practitioners gathered in front of the Chinese Consulate to commemorate their fellow practitioners who were persecuted to death by the CCP. The soft, golden light from their candles lit the night as practitioners solemnly remembered those who have died as a result of the persecution.
Passersby stopped to learn about Falun Dafa and listened to the practitioners’ speeches. Some accepted flyers, while others signed the petition to condemn the persecution. Some drivers of passing by vehicles rolled down their windows and asked for flyers. They said they wished to learn more about the spiritual practice.
Nick parked his car and talked to a practitioner. He said that he knew about the persecution of Falun Dafa and that this evil deed should be stopped. He signed the petition. Before he left, he said, “We will meet again.”
Exposing the CCP’s Persecution
Haiwen Yu was detained and imprisoned several times for her perseverance in practicing Falun Dafa. She said, “It’s almost July 20. This day every year makes my heart feel sad for a long time. I personally experienced the bloody and cruel persecution of Falun Dafa practitioners that is still ongoing.”
“In 1996 I was only in my 20s, but I suffered from tuberculosis and viral myocarditis. My blood platelets were low. After I started to practice Falun Dafa my illnesses quickly disappeared. Even my son, who was weak and sickly from birth, became healthy.
“After the persecution started, in order to speak up for Falun Dafa, I went to Beijing to petition in September 1999. I was arrested and detained in Beijing, escorted to the local detention centre, and detained for one month. That December, I went to Beijing to petition again and was intercepted. I was detained and then incarcerated in a forced labor camp.
“In the labor camp, I was not allowed to go to the restroom unless I renounced Falun Dafa. We practitioners were forced to work for about 20 hours a day and make various birds with feathers. The long-time use of eyes under strong light caused high-pressure astigmatism in my eyes. I couldn’t see clearly.
“The labor camp guards forcibly fed me a small white tablet—some kind of drug. My eye problem remained. However, the roots of my teeth turned black and broke in a short time.
“Six months later, the local police department and the mayor’s office dispatched a few officers to the labor camp to find a few representative practitioners to return to the local area. The officers said that as long as the practitioners participated in a transformation conference and renounced their belief, they could just go home. The officers hinted that otherwise, the practitioners would be sent to prison.
“I firmly refused their coercion. For six months, I was not allowed to talk to anyone. Four people monitored me every day. I was forced to share a bed with a mental patient. I was scolded every day and threatened with a one-metre-long electric baton. When I was released a year later, my front teeth and several of my molars were broken. I only had a few teeth left. I had heart and eyes problems. I looked ten years older than my actual age.”
She said, “Many of the practitioners who I did the exercises with before the persecution were tortured to death. More than 12 practitioners from my area, including Song Bing, Chen Yongzhe, Tong Zhentian, Chen Dexi, Kong Fanrong, and Sun Jianhua were persecuted to death. We used to study and share together every weekend. Others are missing, disabled, or even killed during the CCP’s organ harvesting. Many practitioners’ children were orphaned. Song Yanqun, Li Chunhuan, and Liu Dapeng, who I did the morning exercises with every day, are still illegally detained and persecuted today.”
Falun Dafa practitioner representative Ms. Su addressed the rally and said, “Since 2020, due to the CCP’s cover-up of the coronavirus epidemic, the virus has spread to the world, causing more than 4 million deaths. We hope everyone can differentiate between right and wrong, and between good and evil. We hope that more people will stand on the side of justice, understand and spread the truth, and reject the CCP to help stop this cruel persecution.”
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