Daredevil lives?Posted: April 28, 2012
Sometimes the world can seem quite grim, and I think that’s why people are drawn to comic books and movies, because we like the idea of heroes. Well, it turns out that there may be a real life version of the Marvel hero Daredevil.
I’m talking about the Chinese dissident Chen Guangcheng.
Chen is a political activist who has previously been imprisoned for criticising the Chinese government and has spent the last two years under house arrest.
So how is Chen like the man without fear?
Well, he’s a lawyer (his suit against local officials for various human rights abuses and the brutal enforcement of China’s family planning policies, was what originally got him into trouble with authorities) and he’s also blind, which makes recent events even more extraordinary.
At the time of writing Chen is in the US Embassy, having escaped from the house he has been kept prisoner in.
Yes, you read that right, a blind guy escaped from imprisonment, climbing a wall in the process. Astonishing.
Under US protection talks are in progress to decide his fate, although worryingly several of his friends and family have been detained by the authorities. One can only hope that they are safe.
Chen has issued a video where he appeals to the Chinese Prime Minister that the officials who have attacked him and his family be investigated and prosecuted, for his family to be safe and that China tackle corruption in general.
Rather admirably, Chen has also said that he feels his place is in China where he can continue his work and campaign for justice. Noone could blame the guy if he chose to escape and live a safer life, and his dedication and willingness to remain in harm’s way for his cause is a sign of true heroism.
You can read more about Chen here, and it makes for interesting reading. I’m rather embarrassed to admit I hadn’t heard much about him before today, but what I have read has inspired great respect for the man.
Also, its reminded me that I really need to get more involved in stuff like this, and on payday I intend to join Amnesty International, if you’re also inspired to do this you can find out more about the organisation and the work they do here.
Any thoughts? You know what to do. BETEO