Unlike some of the other Standard writers, I don’t usually find Fran O-Sullivan too bad but her reporting of Key’s trip to China has been disappointing. Here’s how she describes Key’s failure to stand up for human rights:
“Key is also quite pragmatic on human rights. He did not seem bothered enough on China’s record to make ritualistic forays on this score.”
“Pragmatic on human rights” – there’s a cop-out if ever I’ve heard one. If the leaders of democratic countries won’t speak against human rights abuses, who will?
But who can be “bothered” with “ritualistic” defences of the right to life and basic freedoms? After all, they’re only the human rights of Chinese and Tibetans, eh Fran, not real people and there’s money to be made by turning a blind eye.
Let’s hope Key doesn’t bring that same ‘pragmatism’ to our human rights. Oh wait, he has with three strikes and DNA sampling.
No wonder the second in command of China’s dictatorship, Wen Jaibao, “was almost languid as he smiled while he waited on Key to arrive at the Great Hall of the People then grinned delightedly” when Key arrived. Like him, Key is fine with ignoring human rights abuses when there’s money to be made.
That an unelected head of a gang of mass murderers was tickled pink with Key shouldn’t have us clapping. It should turn our stomachs and break our hearts.