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Delayed apology, delayed justice

(People's Daily Online)

16:16, June 21, 2012

After the U.S. Senate passed a bill to apologize for the "Chinese Exclusion Act" on Oct. 6, 2011, the U.S. House of Representatives also passed a bill on June 18, formally apologizing for the Act.

This is a delayed justice. The U.S. Congress had voted through the "Chinese Exclusion Act" in 1882 to restrict the rights of Chinese in the United States and prohibit them entering the state, which is extremely rare in the history of the world and also a great shame to the United States which has been flaunting the human rights. The world has waited for 130 years to hear the apology from the United States.

At the beginning of the 19th century, there were not too many Chinese living in the United States. Because of the construction of railroads, a large number of Chinese workers began entering the United States. To the Chinese workers, it was reasonable and legitimate to enter the country to seek a livelihood under the legal proceedings of China and the United States. To the United States, it urgently needed foreign laborers to develop the western region. It can be said that the Chinese had participated in a mutually beneficial cooperation.

These Chinese had made great contribution to the development and prosperity of the United States but were heavily discriminated against when the country entered the economic downturn. The whites shouted the slogan that "do not give Chinese any job opportunity" and the Chinese Exclusion Act was finally passed in 1882. The shadow of the Act had covered on the head of overseas Chinese for many years.

The founding principle of the United States is that all men are equal, which has become a national faith and moral standard for the country to make propaganda and education in the world. However, beautiful words should be proven with practical action to win the genuine respect of the international community.

Relative to the beautiful ideal of natural human rights, the actual situation in the United States was not so satisfactory. Although the United States established the democratic republican system, the African slave trade was not suppressed; instead it became even more rampant along with the development of cotton cultivation in southern area. Although the black slaves finally got free at the cost of the life of a president, racial discrimination and segregation are still common in the real life. This is the underlying reason why Martin Luther King and other human rights activists called on a racial equality 40 years ago.

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