Breast Ironing

Carried out all over the world, this traditional practice is done on girls who are about to have developing breasts. This is usually carried out by family members, by using hot metals such as hot spoons, to press on the tissue to suppress its growth.

This is done with the intention to prevent their children from attracting men to have sexual thoughts about them, thinking of it as an act of protection from rape, early child marriage and sexual advances. However, some of the intentions are flawed and made to be methods of punishments to their children. In recounts from girls who came out of the closet, it was found that parents would iron their breasts to threaten them. Parents use this as a form of manipulation, even if it was not intended at first. (There are some breast ironing video links at the end of this post.)

Thought we should respect traditional practices, this practice however violates human rights as these practices are clearly harmful, yet forced upon children against their will. This practice not only obviously brings about physical pain to the child, but also traumatizes them. Breast ironing can lead to breast cancer, cysts and depression etc.

The huge problem with this is that there isn’t enough official statistics about this as it is usually done secretly and so there isn’t enough education about this matter. Girls who had ironed breasts would not even know that they have been abused and might even think of it to be a usually practice to coming-of-age children.

Mutilation of the human body is odd, but actually quite common. This can be tied to female genital mutilation(FGM), which is a procedure to remove the clitoris and other external parts of the female intimate area as it was thought to some as an act of becoming a woman (How I Survived Female Genital Mutilation).

Even in so called “advanced” countries like my own, Singapore, these practices of female circumcision still exists and can be even done while the child is an infant (FGM in Singapore).

Videos to watch:

What is Breast Ironing?

Accounts of Breast Ironing

“My mum ironed my breasts aged 13.”

Wikipedia: Breast Ironing

News:

Article 1

Article 2

Article 3

Article 4

Featured image taken from metro.co.uk

So how do we help?

i am angry at the world

I am angry at those who abuse their political power to control the innocent they rule.

I am angry at the criminals who have no remorse after being convicted of their crimes.

I am angry at the corrupted officials who decide that money is more important than the millions of innocent people they supposedly represent and serve.

How dare you have no humility to admit and take action to right your wrongs?

I am angry at the bosses who decide that they are more important than their team and control them like industrial and corporate slaves.

I am angry at the thieves who steal people’s prized possessions and even take people’s lives for material things.

I am angry at the bullies who strike down their peers be it verbally, physically, psychologically and through cyber ways.

Whatever their reason is to be doing what they do, it isn’t right- it is as simple as that. Whatever their circumstance and past, there is always an option to do the right thing over what is easier.

I am angry at myself because with every news article issued on human crises around the world, I choose to not take action yet and just remain angry at the world.

I am angry at myself for being afraid of the people I am angry at.

I am angry at myself for choosing to believe that I am a powerless 21 year old and that all I have is sorrow for the people who have been wronged by bad ones.

I am still angry at myself but I am starting small and I remain hopeful.

 

I still believe, that like the storybooks, the evil will lose and the good ones will eventually get their rest and peace. God help us all, regardless of language, race, religion, gender.

 

uyghurs have hope

This drawing was done up after i started digging up more on the xinjiang conflict in china, involving the unjust of millions of uyghurs stuck in concentration camps. Although the situation seems bleak, I stand firm in hope that one day, they will be set free to live with freedom to live how ever they should.

donate $$ to save the world

If you have some spare cash please do donate to Doctors Without borders, otherwise known as Medecins Sans Frontieres 🙂

Click to donate: Donate

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Also do check out their instagram: @doctorswithoutborders

is china detaining it’s muslims?

(See: BBC- China’s Hidden CampsBBC News Article)

Refer to the links I have attached above. They have gathered evidence of camps existing but have yet to gather evidence on the real objective of the camps and who are the inmates.

The chinese officials there call it a a centre of re-learning, thus calling them “Reeducation camps”.

Oddly enough, this reminds me of another issue from China- controlling the LGBT community. The following are from a article from the Washington Post on this matter:

“It’s been more than 20 years since China decriminalized homosexuality, but LGBT people are still subjected to forced confinement, medication and even electric shocks to try to change their sexual orientation,” said Graeme Reid, LGBT rights director at Human Rights Watch.

In July, a 38-year-old gay man in central China successfully sued a psychiatric hospital, after alleging that staff members detained, drugged and beat him in an attempt to “cure” him of his homosexuality.

(See: BBC- China’s Gay ConversionWashington Post ArticleRelated News Article) China’s government seems to be controlling people who are the minority, using “correction” treatments and if all else fails, they keep you away from the community they strive to perfect.

Back to the topic, I decided to do some more readings on the people that have supposedly “gone missing” from the neighborhoods surrounding the camps. It seems that most of them could be a specific ethnic group called the Uighurs or Uyghurs.

The Uyghurs (/ˈwɡʊərz/,[15] /iˈɡʊərz/)[16][17] or Uygurs (as the standard romanisation in Chinese GB 3304-1991) are a Turkic ethnic group who live in East and Central Asia. Today, Uyghurs live primarily in the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region of the People’s Republic of China, where they are one of 55 officially recognized ethnic minorities. Uyghurs primarily practice Islam. Like many populations of Central Eurasia, they are genetically related to both Caucasoid and East Asian populations.[18]-WikiPedia

Rights groups say people in camps are made to learn Mandarin Chinese and criticise or renounce their faith.

-Quoted from BBC Article

(See: BBC: China Uighurs: All you need to know on Muslim ‘crackdown’Vox- China just legalized “reeducation” camps for Uighur MuslimsVox-China’s reeducation camps for Muslims are beginning to look like concentration camps )

China, based on the basis that Uyghurs have had associations with ISIS and Al-Qaeda, started up such camps to “control or reeducate the Uyghurs affected by extremist values and teachings”. Based on the few Uyghurs, they decided to do this at such a massive scale.

Based on the numberous articles I have read, rights groups have gathered from loved ones visiting those inside the camps that inside, they are taught to know the communist values and adore their Chinese President. Otherwise, they would be tortured. They are also forced to learn mandarin. Chinese authorities even stop the circulation of halal items, associating them with the extremists.

It is estimated that there are about 1 million Uyghurs in the concentration camps.

So what is the world outside doing about this? 

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has condemned the treatment of the Uighurs, but so far the Trump administration hasn’t acted.

(See: ‘Awful abuses’: US denounces China’s treatment of Uighurs)

Their own people are trying to reach out for help (See: Exiled Uyghur leader seeks UN Security Council action on China).  This article highlights some depressing details:

The exiled leader of the World Uyghur Congress urged the United Nations Security Council to take action on China over its use of detention camps for Muslims in the western autonomous region of Xinjiang.

A former human rights activist while at a university in China, Isa fled to Turkey in 1994 under fear of detention. He became a German citizen in 1996 and helped establish the World Uyghur Youth Congress.

Isa said the U.N. should pressure Beijing to close the camps through means such as passing resolutions to sanction Chinese officials, though he added that it could be difficult with China a permanent member of the security council. The leader of the group also called on U.S. President Donald Trump to take action.

China has vehemently denied allegations that it is mistreating Muslims in the region, which the Uyghur people call East Turkestan.

Hu Lianhe, a Chinese official involved with Xinjiang policy, told the U.N. Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination that there was no arbitrary detention or re-education centers.

Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Hua Chunying said late last month that criticism of China’s policy in the region has no factual basis.

Those measures in Xinjiang are aimed to promote stability, development and unity, and to ensure better livelihoods,” she said at a regular briefing in Beijing. “They are carried out in order to combat ethnic separatism and terrorist criminal activities in accordance with the law, and to safeguard national security and protect people’s life and property.”

While only about 1.5% of China’s population live in Xinjiang, it accounted for more than 20% of arrests last yearaccording to data compiled by Chinese Human Rights Defenders.

Conditions have deteriorated since President Xi Jinping came to power in 2012,” Isa said. “There are police monitoring stations every 200 to 300 meters in the city, they have facial recognition cameras, and they are building new camps.”

The UN has started its investigation on the matter (See: UN ‘alarmed’ by reports of China’s mass detention of Uighurs) and China reacted: “Beijing has denied the allegations but admitted that some religious extremists were being held for re-education.”

Their reaction is akin to the many issues that many other races in many countries face. Take for instance, in America, the African-Americans are often accused to be criminals (See: Black People More Likely to Be Wrongfully Convicted of Murder, Study ShowsNordstrom Rack apologizes after 3 black men are falsely accused of stealing from Brentwood store), while in Europe, the Muslims are accused to be “terrorists” (See: Street attacks on Muslims rocket in UK as perpetrators ’emboldened’ by terror attacks and political rhetoric, report findsTerrorism has changed. Blaming Islam is blinding us to the new reality). I could state many more, but basically, in every country, there is a group that is always victim to false accusations to wrongful doing just because one of their people messed up.

China in turn, has turned the reports from the UN down, saying that the report is based on “unsubstantiated and irresponsible information” (See: China hits back after damning UN report on Uyghur ‘re-education camps’) and stated:

“China is committed to ensuring the religious freedom of the Chinese citizens,” she said, adding she hoped US lawmakers “can stop this kind of bias and stop hurting the mutual trust and cooperation between the China and the US.”

As of now, 26 October 2018, there is no firm action taken by any government or ogranisation outside of China. The Xinjiang Conflict has been on-going since the 1960s and has worsened in the recent years, especially in the past month as they launch the Anti-Halal campaign.

With the growing power of China, who else could resolve this conflict, whilst ensuring the safety of the millions of Uyghurs detained by the Chinese? Could this be the warning sign of a genocide of the modern 21st Century after Hitler’s?

For I am just a normal student, I can only do my part to spread the awareness of such an issue, while I pray for the millions affected. Feel free to research and read up more about this matter and spread the word! The Uyghurs deserve to be free and have human rights!