A few Republicans Representatives have introduced legislation to rename the street outside of the Chinese Embassy in Washington in honor of the Wuhan doctor who died after trying to warn the world about the CCP virus, commonly known as the novel coronavirus.
Congresswoman Liz Cheney introduced a bill in the House this week to rename the street “Li Wenliang Plaza” and was joined by 14 of her Republican House Colleagues.
GOP Sens. Tom Cotton (R-Ark.), Ben Sasse (R-Neb.), Marco Rubio (R-Fla.), and Marsha Blackburn (R-Tn.), introduced a twin bill in the Senate to support the change.
“The Chinese Government attempted to silence Dr. Li Wenliang who, at great personal risk, warned about the danger of coronavirus,” the Wyoming lawmaker said in a statement.
Li has been lauded as a brave whistleblower by both Americans and Chinese citizens for warning a group of doctors in China about how contagious the virus is. Li, a 34-year-old ophthalmologist, was among the first people to publicize information about the outbreak in Wuhan.
“Seven ‘SARS-like’ cases from the Huanan seafood market have been confirmed,” Li wrote on Dec. 30, 2019, on Chinese social media app WeChat in a chat group with hundreds of his former medical school classmates, attaching a screenshot of a diagnosis report. Li revealed the information a day before Wuhan’s health officials acknowledged that there was a mysterious viral “pneumonia” outbreak.
Despite Li’s reminder to not “spread it externally,” screenshots of the conversation showing his full name proliferated on the internet very quickly. On Jan. 3, police reprimanded him along with seven other medical professionals for spreading “rumors” online. The police statement said he had violated the law.
Days later, Li contracted the virus while operating on an asymptomatic patient for glaucoma, and died on Feb. 7.
“While the Chinese Communist Party caused the virus to be spread around the globe, resulting in death and economic devastation, brave medical professionals like Dr. Li spoke truth to the regime,” added Cheney.
There are many brave Chinese citizens who told the truth about the pandemic and, like doctor Li, paid a high price for speaking out against the CCP’s lies, such as the doctor who gave the information to Li.
The emergency surgeon who this month revealed that she was the “whistle provider” who gave a diagnosis report of the virus to Li has since disappeared.
Doctor Ai Fen, the head of Emergency at Wuhan Central Hospital, has been missing for days, according to a March 31 report by Australia’s “60 Minutes.” Her disappearance comes just two weeks after she said authorities had prevented her and her colleagues from warning the world about the CCP virus.
“She has now disappeared, her whereabouts unknown,” the flagship investigative show reported, amid fears the doctor could have been detained for speaking out.
Before her alleged disappearance, Ai said police didn’t go after her, but that she received an “unprecedented, very harsh admonition” from her superiors.
“Many, many times, I thought how nice it would be if we could turn back the clock,” she told Chinese magazine Portrait, adding that she regretted not telling more doctors about the danger.
“If I knew what it would be like today, no matter if I got criticized or not, I would have spread it all around,” she said. “Someone has to stand up and tell the truth. … There has to be different voices in this world, right?”
Cheney in her statement said that she hoped the renaming of the street would “serve as a constant reminder to the world and to the Chinese Government that truth and freedom will prevail,” said Cheney.
Cathy He and Eva Fu contributed to this report