The Chinese Communist Party has become more aggressive against religions and is forcing professionals like doctors, lawyers, and teachers to declare themselves to be atheists in several parts of the country. In addition, kids are also being banned from being taught the religious traditions and practices of their parents.
The declaration to be atheists
In many parts of China, the communist regime has issued “Letters Of Commitment” to teachers and healthcare professionals, asking them to pledge that they will never hold any kind of religious beliefs and that they will always follow the Party ideology.
Tibetan Review quotes the government’s letter to teachers in Yueqing City as saying that they should “adhere to the correct political direction, promote atheism, firmly establish a Marxist religious outlook, not believe in any religion, and not teach any religious knowledge to students,” while a letter for medical professionals asked them to “discover, stop, and report violations of laws and discipline with regard to religion to police or administrative departments in a timely manner, including their family members, children, relatives, friends, and neighbors.”
In Wenzhou City, government investigators were reportedly concerned with the large number of Christian churches in the region and wanted to suppress professionals from being influenced by Christianity. As such, the Communist Party has begun sending out “Letters Of Commitment” to doctors and teachers in the region. Hospitals are required to find healthcare professionals in their service who hold religious beliefs and punish them.
“[Authorities in Wenzhou’s] Ouhai District put out a short video that was mentioned when the schools were holding their meetings. It was saying that teachers mustn’t hold any religious beliefs, and particularly that they mustn’t proselytize in schools. Now, all the schools are requiring teachers not to follow any religion, because there is an investigation team from the central government in Zhejiang from mid-September to around Oct. 10,” Radio Free Asia quotes a Christian from Zhejiang.
China is also implementing several measures to stop children from practicing their faith. In fact, an order to ban minors from religious sites was issued by the government in February this year. Several Christian institutions have been forced to put up a “No Minors” sign in front of their churches. In Tibet, children were asked to not participate in any Buddhist religious activities during their summer vacation.
However, the most brutal crackdown against minors practicing their faith is being carried out in the Xinjiang Province against the Uyghur Muslim community. Several reports suggest that the communist government is even separating children from their parents in its zeal to prevent children from becoming practicing Muslims early on.
“This is an ethnic group whose knowledge base is being erased. What we’re looking at is something like a settler colonial situation where an entire generation is lost,” Darren Byler, a researcher of Uyghur culture at the University of Washington, says in an interview with The Japan Times. The Chinese government claims that its measures are aimed at helping prevent ethnic separatism in Xinjiang while bringing stability, peace, and prosperity to the region.
However, experts argue that the Communist Party is essentially acting like a new version of European colonialists, who went around colonizing and destroying other cultures while traumatizing indigenous children by separating them from their heritage. And no matter how much the communists want to present themselves as the good guys, the truth is that there is nothing inherently good about forcing people to ditch their cultural and religious heritage.