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Commentary Wrap: Whipping, Air Pollution and the Chongqing Sex Tape


February 1, 2013
By Zhu Na and Pang Lei

Editors from the EO's Chinese website publish a daily collection of extracts from commentary pieces on topical issues that appear in the mainland press alongside reactions on Sina Weibo. Every Friday, the EO's English team translates a selection of these opinion pieces.


























The Chongqing "Sex Tape"

Chongqing police paid a visit to the Beijing home of Zhu Weifeng (朱瑞峰) earlier this week. Zhu was behind the release a sex tape that brought down a local Chongqing official at the end of last year and claims to have more tapes. Police said that Zhu had a duty to help them with their investigation into how the tapes were used to blackmail officials and businessmen. More details here.


Given that there is so much that is unclear about this "Chongqing sex tape" case, the top priority should be to quickly get to the bottom of things. It shouldn't be difficult to take witness statements and examine the videos. On this basis of finding out the truth, officials who "violated discipline" should be pursued and so should those people who broke the law and then the results should be published for all to see. This is what the law requires and it's also needed as a response to public concern about this issue.
The Beijing News (新京报)
Original article: [Chinese]

We can see from the way that people have turned Zhao Hongxia (赵红霞) - the woman who appeared in some of the sex tapes" - into a hero, that not everyone looks at this problem from the perspective of what's right and wrong. This is because people loathe corrupt officials so much and they hope that there can be stronger and more effective ways of exposing them. This is a pressing need but it will impact on China's future social development.
China Business View (华商报)
Original article: [Chinese]

The public declaration of official's assets puts restrictions on officials, it will also mean that they're not as likely to fall into the trap that people caught on these tapes fell into. Human nature means that people will always be tempted but a system for declaring assets will help keep officials on track.
China Youth Daily (中国青年报)
Original article: [Chinese]

Introducing Whipping

At the provincial “Two Sessions” in Guangdong Province, Chen Weicai (陈伟才), a deputy to the National People's Congress and an official from the Guangzhou Municipal Public Security Bureau, controversially proposed the reintroduction of corporal punishment in China. Chen said that China should once again consider lashing and caning convicted criminals. Chen said that although China’s criminal law is strict and the death penalty is already used for serious violent crimes, it’s only one aspect and isn’t enough for long-term deterrence.


Singapore has good social order with a low crime rate, which doesn’t necessarily stem from how brutal and inhumane their punishments are. It’s because they have strict laws and truly follow the idea that “the laws are strictly observed and enforced and law-breakers are punished”. We should learn from Singapore’s law enforcement attitude of not bending the law for one's own profit, but not from their strange habit of caning.
China Youth Daily (中国青年报)
Original article: [Chinese]

The proposal to introduce flogging lacks serious consideration of human rights and dignity. Belief in this penalty method misunderstands the value of the rule of law. Having whipping included into the law undoubtedly will make penalties more “evil” and increase the possibility of losing human rights. On account of human rights protection, we should all agree on unconditionally opposing lashing and other forms of torture.
Beijing Youth Daily (北京青年报)
Original article: [Chinese]

What we need is the awareness of legal fairness above all - which is deeply rooted in people’s hearts. If we really follow the idea that “the laws are strictly observed and enforced and law-breakers are punished,” then the existing laws are enough. If, when implementing national laws and rules, authorities are influenced by external factors, even if we borrow all the penalties from around the world, I am afraid it will still be useless.
China Business View (华商报), a popular daily newspaper published in Xi'an.
Original article: [Chinese]

Dealing with Air Pollution

: On Jan 30, an official at the Ministry of Environmental Protection said that air quality is still at the heavily polluted or severely polluted level in many cities because of a large patch of smog covering much of the country. Satellite remote sensing data showed that on Jan 29, the area covered by this smog patch was 1.43 million km2 , accounting for 1/7 of China’s total land area.


The law is the basic means by which we should urge government, businesses and citizens to walk on the right track of environmental protection. Before the environmental protection-related laws were formulated and amended, they often encountered resistance from some departments with vested-interests. In the end, the laws that were implemented did little more than scratch the surface. But now it’s really time to put the environment first and take protecting air quality as our first priority.
Beijing News (新京报)
Original article: [Chinese]

On behalf of taxpayers, I ask the government to be more open and transparent in dealing with city air pollution. Although the issue of smoggy weather is unable to be solved in a short time, it’s necessary to give the public a timetable and let the public, which is suffering from the smog, have hope that there is plan to solve the problem.
China Youth Daily (青年报)
Original article: [Chinese]

We have to admit this large scale smog already counts heavy pollution but meanwhile we try to evade the truth that this pollution is caused by human action – this is a kind of “gray smog psychology.” Because of this, no one is willing to come forward and accept responsibility and apologize to the public for causing the pollution
China Business View (华商报)
Original article: [Chinese]

Comments from Sina Weibo Users:

@Bell-Bell123:The longest distance in the world is not life and death, but when you stand beside me and we cannot see each other…..
Original post: [Chinese]


Comments(The views posted belong to the commentator, not representative of the EO)

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