'For Us, Mother's Day is a Day of Bitterness'

May 15, 2006 Updated: May 15, 2006

On Mother's Day, when mothers around the world are enjoying blessings and happiness, some mothers in mainland China are being deprived of this. They say that like all other mothers worldwide, they also long for reunion with their children and family. In mainland China, however, a society where “human rights” is just an empty phrase, Mother's Day is not only a luxury those appellants cannot afford, but also a day of misery for them.

I Deeply Condemn Myself for Not Being Able to Fulfill a Mother's Responsibility

Qian Lili, from Shandong Province who appeals for her son's unjust murder, told us her feelings about Mother's Day. Qian said, “We sincerely wish every mother in the world happiness and wish that their children will have a joyful life. We also hope that mothers in mainland China are able to enjoy the same human rights enjoyed by mothers in democratic countries and enjoy their special holiday. For mothers like us, however, who have lost their children, Mother's Day is only a day of suffering. Our hearts have already dead.”

Qian Lili was a worker in Hengcheng Machinery Works, Shandong Aluminum Industry Co. Her husband left her for someone else. In 2001, Lili's son was murdered by his stepmother, Wei Lina. After a few months' inquisition, Shandong Zibo City Police Bureau found Wei Lina “not guilty” and released her, claiming she was “mentally disturbed”. That was when Qian Lili began her long journey of appealing for justice. Over the past five years, Lili has been kidnapped and assaulted many times by the police.

Qian Lili said, “In the past, bandits hid in the mountains, but now the bandits are among the policemen. It's the same everywhere in mainland China. The policemen are just bandits and scoundrels in uniforms. Over the past few years I have petitioned for my son and sought justice. I deeply condemn myself for not being able to fulfill a mother's responsibility. I had no power to protect my child. He was only eight when he was murdered, and he died a horrifying death. The tendons in his arms and legs were cut, and he was stabbed 31 times in the head. Over these last few years I have received too many blows and shouldered too much pressure. I'm so exhausted. It's so hard to be a mother.”

I Want to End My Life Rather Than Burden My Family

Seventy-six-year-old Li Lanying has been appealing for her son for seven years. In her last appeal before the Chinese New Year, she was beaten up by the policemen of Beijing's Chongwen Police Station. Her hip was broken as a result. Li said, “Mother's Day makes me feel disappointed. This holiday can never be mine again.”

“My son has been gone for seven years. He died in a traffic accident in which he was knocked down by a car. To seek justice I tried to appeal his case, despite all the hardships. However, I ended up with my own injury before my wishes could be granted.”

“On January 24 this year, I went to petition as usual. I went to the Chongwen Police Station and waited for the director to hear my appeal. But the policemen there hauled me into the police car where they beat and kicked me. Some policemen held my head and legs and shook me hard. That's when my hip broke. My muscles were also seriously injured.”

Under continuous pressure from me and my family, they eventually took me to a hospital for treatment, although it was a week after the attack. I don't even want to mention the pain I endured during that time. I'd rather die than suffer that again. Forty days after the operation, I left the hospital and went home. Now I have steel plates screwed into my hip and the doctor has tried to piece together the bones smashed by the policemen. It's been five months now and I can just get to the restroom myself. Not so long ago I was bedridden and I even thought of setting myself on fire. Now I can't appeal for my son anymore and I have become a burden to my family as I need constant care… my life is so miserable. My son's death is so unjust! There's no way we common people can survive now.”

Every Organ Was Stolen After a Traffic Accident

Both Li Lanying and Qian Lili told The Epoch Times about a man from Shanxi Province called Zhang Jinxian, who has been appealing in Beijing for three years. Zhang's son and daughter-in-law worked in Guangzhou Province. One day Zhang got a notice from the Police Bureau that his son died in a traffic accident. When the family saw the son's dead body, they found that all the organs, from eyes to abdominal cavity, were stolen. The next day local police had the body cremated. Now the victim's mother, wife and a four-year-old child are staying in Beijing to appeal. With no money, they can only beg on the streets to survive. They tell everyone about their tragedy. Li Lanying asked, “Where are their human rights? Do you think they can be happy on Mother's Day?”

“Mom Is the Best in the World!”

Before the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference this year, Zhang Shufeng, an appellant from Shunyi City in Beijing, was arrested and sentenced to one year of labor camp imprisonment. Her disabled husband Mr. Zhang has been left to care for their little daughter, Zhang Nan.

A few years ago, Zhang Nan was insulted and injured by her teacher in primary school and was expelled from school. Her father, trying to plead for his daughter, was beaten so violently he became disabled, and thus lost his ability to work. Zhang Shufeng started to appeal everywhere she could go. The renowned human rights attorney, Gao Zhisheng, gave the Zhang's financial support and helped Zhang Nan resume schooling. However, Zhang Nan was forced out of school again this March after her mother was put in jail.

Zhang Nan said she misses her mother very much, and she always cries when she thinks of her mother. When Zhang Nan learned it was Mother's Day, she sang the song “Mom is the best in the world” to express her love for her mom.