One of the most iconic moments in modern Chinese history occurred 30 years ago today, when Chinese military forces opened fire and rolled military vehicles over student protesters in Tienanmen Square, Beijing. Mounting pressures from six student groups resulted in a harsh response to Chinese Communist Party leadership, resulting in countless young lives lost in the aftermath. This date not only marks a grim anniversary of CCP oppression, but also the date in which Chinese leadership showed the world its true attitude towards allowing basic human freedoms to its population.
As the international community mourns the loss of countless protesters in 1989, people around the globe should also reflect on the steps the CCP has taken since that time to ensure its citizens adhere to government directives. Newly enacted social credit systems, internet firewalls and censorship plague Chinese culture, with government-backed tech firms leading the charge to develop an ever-monitored society.
It is pertinent that western citizens work to protect their own individual freedoms, even as Chinese state leadership seeks to intrude upon individual privacy through the distribution of technology known to encroach on personal rights. On this anniversary of a great tragedy we should look to cultivate personal freedom and remember how vital technology is to that pursuit – as a catalyst to expression, not a means for increased surveillance and scrutiny of civilian populations.