A colorful tradition has developed in U.S.-China relations in recent years, where each spring the State Department releases reports on the human rights records of 190 countries during the previous year, and Beijing responds by releasing its own report on human rights in the United States.
On Friday, the State Department began this process with the roll out of its annual human rights reports. The report on China was typical fare; it said human rights violations were increasing in China, but failed to specify what it was using as the baseline to make this judgment (certainly Maoist China had a worse human rights record than Xi’s China). The specific charges leveled against China were almost entirely what one would expect to see from a U.S. report on human rights in China.
In this sense, China’s report on human rights in the U.S. is far more interesting. One doesn’t normally think about what kinds of human rights issues might concern Beijing. The latest report features concerns that range from more or less justified to downright comical.
One of the more justifiable (if opportunist) concerns China has is gun violence in the United States. The report speaks at length about gun ownership and violence in America, and the refusal of the U.S. to take action against it. Some of the more notable quotes from that section include:
Americans are the most heavily armed people in the world per capita. READ MORE