About a hundred guests attended a private screening of “Free China: The Courage to Believe” at the Rayburn House Congressional Building in Washington, D.C on Aug. 1. Many guests are congressional staffers from the Senate and the House and a few are from other government agencies.
Kean Wong, producer of “Free China,” started the private screening by revealing the new theme song incorporated into the theatrical version of the film. “The Courage to Believe” is sung by Q’orianka Kilcher, a young actress known for her portrayal of Pocahontas opposite Colin Farrell and Christian Bale in “the New World.” The song is available at freechinasong.com.
’Commenting on the issue of forced organ harvesting, one congressional staff says: “It’s too tragic. The world is too silent on the subject… We should speak out more, force China to honor their international agreements, and allow complete inspections and total truth, and not just paper forbidding organ harvesting.”
Another congressional staff tells the Epoch Times: “It’s appalling to see the human rights abuses that are occurring in China. A lot of it is not something in the mainstream. It’s certainly something of concern that needs to be looked at much closer so that human rights can be restored there. In order to do so, we have to bring the real situation to light.”
A congressional committee staff learned from the film that the Chinese government at one time encouraged the practice of Falun Gong and regarded as good for health and society.
She commented: “This is all enlightening to people. Why does the Chinese government not respect freedom of religion? … [The Chinese communist party] is a government religion. It is very closed. ‘You must do it our way and our way only. There’s no individual thought.’ … I just cannot relate to that. That will never, never be allowed in the United States!”
Greater Appreciation for the Practice
The congressional committee staff also learned more about the practice: “Falun Gong is peaceful, spiritual, controlling of yourself… Wouldn’t civilized societies benefit from people trying to improve themselves…?”
When asked what he is most impressed by, one congressional staff put it this way: “the fortitude and bravery of the people willing to challenge the system.”
Another congressional staff shares with Epoch Times: “It’s an amazing story of endurance in terrible circumstances. The power of faith, the power of family, and the power of the draw towards freedom… I’m very impressed with the strength of both individuals highlighted in the film. They are heroes. They are amazing people, very strong!”
“I thought Jennifer and Charles were magnificent spokespeople, really enjoyed learning from them. I was horrified by their personal experiences. Charles was an American citizen and how he was treated!” says the congressional committee staff.
Mr. Chatodd Floyd comes from Small Business Administration located at a nearby building. He has come specifically for the screening. Prior to this, he hasn’t heard of Falun Gong.
He said, “I really enjoyed the movie. It was definitely eye-opening. I have heard about the control of the Internet. I didn’t really understand what was going on in the forced labor camp…”
No Stranger on Capitol Hill
This is the fourth time of “Free China” private screening on Capitol Hill. The first screening of the preliminary version of the movie occurred around July 20, 2011 at the Rayburn House Congressional Building, hosted by Congressman Chris Smith of New Jersey and the Foreign Affairs Committee.
The second and third screenings in September 2012 and April 2013 were both held at the Capitol Visitor Center. On September 18, 2012, as part of the international launch of “Free China” private screening, a panel of distinguished speakers, including Congressman Chris Smith, Dr. Katrina Lantos Swett, Chair of U.S. Commissions on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF), Michael Horowitz with the Hudson Institute, and Michael Perlman, Director of “Free China,” engaged in-depth discussions on human rights in China.
Directed by Michael Perlman of “Tibet: Beyond Fear,” and co-produced by New Tang Dynasty Television (NTD), the award winning 53-minute documentary tells the remarkable survival stories of two individuals, who were tortured and subjected to slave labor for their spiritual beliefs. They are two among the millions of peaceful Falun Gong practitioners in China. Through their stories, the film puts a human face on the Chinese state’s human rights abuses, including arbitrary detention of dissidents, export of products made by forced prison labor to the West, and the harvesting of organs from live prisoners of conscience.