Once again, the US is cleaning up other countries’ messes. In 1997, the United Kingdom passed Hong Kong to the Chinese government under the structure of the “one country two systems” policy. The policy entailed a system in which the Chinese upheld a communist government while respecting the democratic system in Hong Kong. The system allows Hong Kong to be an autonomous region of China until 2047, marking the 50 years when Britain handed Hong Kong as Chinese territory. Therefore, Hong Kong in the meantime upholds a capitalist democratic government that supports the basic fundamentals of a democracy such as freedom of speech
Currently, the policy has been violated in which the communists have committed human rights crimes against democratic authors and publishers who have expressed their opinions on communist societies. In 2015, five authors/publishers were abducted from Hong Kong and were left in Chinese custody. One author, Lam Wing-kee, reported that when under Chinese custody, he was constantly observed as well as had to endure psychological torture. By all means, the Chinese republic has violated many human rights.
American senator Rubio asked, “Will Hong Kong be able to maintain its cherished autonomy as promised 20 years ago when the British handover occurred, or will Beijing continue chipping away at the democratic institutions and basic rights which have long distinguished Hong Kong from mainland China?” (Forbes) There is no doubt that change needs to occur, yet is it truly the American responsibility to do so? The larger conflict of communism vs. democracy lies beneath America’s concern. The fear of the Chinese communist overtaking the Hong Kong scares the democratic governments of the world. If China does so, it begins a trend for the spread of communism.
The policy of one country two systems in theory is ideal, and for a few years it was successful. Yet now that the policy is failing, there needs to be a consequence for the lack of cooperation from the Chinese. Minky Worden, director of global initiatives at Human Rights Watch noted, “The best hope for a rights-respecting China is in Hong Kong, where rights already exist and only need to be protected and preserved, rather than created anew.” (Forbes) So the question arises, how does one recreate a rights-respecting environment and who should enforce it? The United States have been historically known for being the policemen of the world. But due to the fact that there is larger issue at hand, the expansion on communism, there needs to be a greater drive for other democratic governments to intervene. Quite frankly, Great Britain who set the structure of the two systems should be intervening most. All countries need to set aside their personal agendas and understand the larger issue at hand. The spread of communism needs to be stopped. The lack of consequences for China’s human rights crimes is opening the door for the communist regime to spread.