Special Correspondent: The human rights situation in the US continued to deteriorate in 2023 and has become increasingly polarized, with the majority of ordinary US people being marginalized compared to the few who hold political, economic, and social dominance, according to a report that has exposed the truth of human rights violations in the US released by China’s State Council on Wednesday.

Titled The Report on Human Rights Violations in the US in 2023, the annual report fully reveals the US human rights situation through sections including the erosion of civil and political rights, the deep-rooted harm of racism, the escalating economic and social inequality, the ongoing violation of women and children’s rights, the heart-wrenching plight of undocumented immigrants, and the humanitarian crisis created by US hegemony.

According to the report, human rights in the US are increasingly polarized, with political parties in conflict, government incompetence, and governance failures, leading to ineffective protection of civil and political rights.
Chang Jian, director of the Research Center for Human Rights at the Tianjin-based Nankai University, who participated in composing the report, told the Global Times on Wednesday that the polarized nature of human rights is the fundamental image of the human rights situation in the US. “The enjoyment of human rights is a privilege reserved only for the few who wield political, economic, and social power. Meanwhile, the rights of the majority have been marginalized.”

Chang said the release of the US human rights report serves as a reminder to China. To achieve the Chinese path to modernization, China’s approach is to ensure full rights for its people, the ordinary citizens, enabling them to experience a sense of happiness and security regarding human rights protection. “This stands in stark contrast to the US, which claims to be a beacon of democracy but, in reality, it is just a slogan,” Chang noted.

In detail, the report said that throughout 2023, the US witnessed at least 654 large-scale shooting incidents, resulting in approximately 43,000 deaths, an average of 117 deaths per day, the report wrote.

Driven by partisan polarization and interest groups, many state governments have initiated pushing legislation to expand residents’ rights to own and bear arms. In 2023, at least 27 states did not require a license to carry a handgun, the report said, highlighting “gun violence spills over, while the government’s control policies are ineffective.”

The government has abused its power to monitor citizens’ privacy, suppressing freedom of speech and expression. According to the report, the number of faculty members punished or fired for speech and expression on US college campuses has reached a 20-year high.

Deaths from police brutality hit a record high, rendering the police enforcement accountability system virtually non-existent. Police brutality persisted, and at least 1,247 deaths were attributed to police violence, an average of roughly three people killed by officers each day. However, more than half of police killings were incorrectly labeled as “general homicide or suicide” in the CDC’s official death statistics database, the report noted.

It also said that growing economic and social inequality makes life extremely difficult for people with low incomes, with the number of homeless people in the US exceeding 650,000, the highest since reporting began in 2007. Drug and substance abuse keeps raging. Suicide rates continue to rise.

Living in the US with a deteriorated human rights situation, ordinary people have to strive to win their rights as the US system decides the human rights in the country will not get any better if they don’t fight for themselves, Chang said, explaining the rising protests in the US.

In recent weeks, there have been confrontations between law enforcement officials, university administrators, and pro-Palestinian demonstrators at numerous college campuses. This has resulted in the arrest of students, the dismantling of encampments, and warnings of potential academic repercussions. According to The New York Times, more than 2,900 people nationwide have been arrested or detained on campuses.

“These students are not ordinary students, but from elite families. These people were supposed to become the American elite, similar to their parents, but now they have left,” Zhu Yuanqing, deputy dean of the Human Rights Institute School of the Southwest University of Political Science and Law, told the Global Times. “This proves America is unable to reach consensus on issues that tear its society apart, unable to reconcile. This situation is only going to get worse.”

To crack down on the student movement, the US used violence, and we see violence every day on the news. This is a crackdown on American citizens who have repeatedly promoted freedom of speech. Chu noted that civil rights such as freedom of assembly and association and the right to march and demonstrate, as written in the US Constitution, are blatantly violated.

The report also proved this point, saying the US has long pursued hegemonism, practiced power politics, and created humanitarian crises. It highlighted that in the wars where the US conducted overseas “counter-terrorism” operations, the total death toll ranged from at least 4.5 to 4.7 million people.

The report said that the US’ various human rights problems seriously threaten and hinder the healthy development of the world’s human rights cause. Experts who participated in composing the report told the Global Times that the data included in the report is all sourced from open US media and publications, proving it is a well-founded report. They also said it is worthwhile for the rest of the world to know the hypocrisy and double standards of US human rights.


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