The city of Hawaiian Gardens might be the smallest city in Los Angeles County, but it recently made a big step towards bringing awareness to one of the world’s most shocking atrocities.
Reynaldo O. Rodriguez, mayor of Hawaiian Gardens, opened the regular city council meeting on March 13 at 6:00pm. During the presentations and proclamations section, Mayor Pro Tem Barry Bruce introduced a proclamation signed by the mayor: “Joining in solidarity with Falun Gong practitioners in China to condemn practices of forced and non-consenting illegal organ harvesting.”
Falun Gong, or Falun Dafa, is a peaceful meditation practice that has been persecuted in China since 1999. Many practitioners have been harassed, arrested, and tortured for their beliefs, and large numbers have become victims of a state-sanctioned program of forced organ harvesting, where prisoners are killed on demand and their organs sold, according to “An Update to ‘Bloody Harvest’ and ‘The Slaughter'” and other investigative reports.
The Mayor Pro Tem said that the entire Hawaiian Gardens City Council agreed on the proclamation.
“We want to make sure that the city knows about this, we want to make sure that the residents know about this, we want to make sure that our state knows about this, that our country knows about this, and the whole world knows about this, because this is a genocide in the worst fashion, and it’s taking place in our world today,” said Bruce.
The proclamation was handed to Michael Ye, a local advocate for the Falun Gong community, who recently spoke in front of the city council about the persecution and organ harvesting in China.
“I really, really appreciate this proclamation,” said Michael Ye. “They’re helping tens of millions of Falun Gong practitioners that are being persecuted brutally and also at risk of forced organ harvesting.”
The proclamation called on the president of the United States to “undertake a full and transparent investigation” into organ harvesting practices by the Chinese Communist Party and prosecute those who participated in such crimes.
Ye encouraged other leaders from California and across the world to also stand up and help end this crime against humanity sooner.
“They’re defending the core values of human civilization. I think they set a great example for elected officials,” he said.
On March 3, the California Republican Assembly (CRA), also passed a resolution titled, “Stop Chinese Human Rights Abuses—Resolution to stop the People’s Republic of China’s religious persecution and organ harvesting of prisoners.”
In the summer of 2017, California State Senator Joel Anderson proposed resolution SJR-10 condemning the Chinese Communist regime’s persecution of Falun Gong practitioners. However, officials from the Chinese Consulate in San Francisco reportedly contacted senators about the resolution, and the proposal was later shelved.