Writing Plan – VoxPopuli

Thesis Statement:

The world should take more action against China because they are an authoritarian regime that has abused the human rights of its citizens multiple times.

Background and Evidence:

China is one of the worst countries in the world when it come to handling human rights. Chinese citizens have none of the rights we take for granted every day, the right to freedom of speech, assembly, religion, or press. The Chinese government has shown that it will not tolerate dissent as demonstrated by their handling of major protests. For example, during the 1989 Tiananmen Square Protests military force was used against pro-democracy demonstrators, leading to many deaths. A more recent example would be China suppressing protests in Hong Kong.

Furthermore, China has oppressed minority groups such as the Uighur Muslims, Tibetans and Falun Gong. These groups have been treated terribly by the Chinese government. Those who resist are made political prisoners and put into reeducation camps. China has been known to harvest the organs of those in these camps on a large scale. Forced abortions, torture and sterilizations are also common.

The governments of the free world have condemned China for the atrocities mentioned above but, very little action has been taken to stop China from violating human rights. The likely reason for this is because of our dependence on China for cheap manufacturing. In addition, many companies don’t speak out in fear of losing access to the lucrative Chinese market.

Sources I Have Found:

Survivors and victims on shocking state-sanctioned organ harvesting in China

China’s policy of harvesting the organs of political prisoners has slowly been revealed over the past few years. China denies this barbaric practice but the incredibly short wait times on its organ transplant lists suggests that it is taking place. The victims of forced organ harvesting are mostly members of the Falun Gong spirituality who are targeted due to their membership in a minority religious group. Prisoners are screened thoroughly in order to ensure their organs are healthy enough to be harvested. Those prisoners who are not deemed healthy enough for harvesting are not given any medical care at all.


Members of the Uighur Muslim minority in Xingjian China are being oppressed by the Chinese government. Beginning in 2017 more than 1 million Uighurs have been detained unlawfully. In detention they commonly face forced labor and torture. Many of the women are sterilized against their wills, some die due to the procedure. Furthermore, Uighur children whose parents have been detained are sent to government sponsored “boarding schools” where they are brainwashed to forget their ethnic roots. What China is doing to the Uighurs can be labeled as cultural genocide.

China’s strict policy against dissent is starting to affect foreign entities. Earlier this month China blocked the airing of NBA games in china and demanded the firing of the Houston Rockets GM who spoke out in favor of Hong Kong. Many other companies are now being forced to censor themselves or lose access to the Chinese market. What’s ironic is that free speech is “guaranteed” in China’s constitution as long as you don’t speak out against the government. Other companies have also fallen prey to China including Blizzard, DreamWorks, and American Airlines.


Hong Kong police are being criticized for their use of excessive force in response to the Hong Kong protests. The pro-democracy demonstrations in Hong Kong which started last June in protest of an extradition bill that would have allowed China to extradite from Hong Kong and are still raging on today. Recently police shot a protestor which marked an escalation in police response. The officer who shot the protester claims he was fearing for his life but, some argue that he was not in any danger at all.

Sources I Haven’t Found Yet:

I would like to find more firsthand accounts from Chinese citizens about how their human rights are being violated by the Chinese government especially regarding free speech/free expression. This could introduce a more “personal aspect” that could be persuasive and generate empathy from the reade.

I also want to find more sources regarding the situation in Hong Kong and how China is decreasing the human rights and freedoms of HK citizens.

Counterarguments I May Need to Refute:

Plenty of other countries are just as bad as or even worse than China regarding human rights, why should we single China out?

Why should we care about things happening in China, how do they affect us?

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3 Responses to Writing Plan – VoxPopuli

  1. davidbdale says:

    I advised you against revising your Writing Plan in November because it was already good enough to do your grade no harm.


  2. davidbdale says:

    Thank you very much for requesting specific advice, Vox.
    Does my Thesis Work?

    The world should take more action against China because they are an authoritarian regime that has abused the human rights of its citizens multiple times.

    I’d say mostly. What other countries are authoritarian regimes, and what actions does the world take against them? Is the US—the only developed nation that exercises capital punishment on its own citizens—a regime that “has abused the human rights of its citizens multiple times”? Should the world “take action against” the US as a result? So, which is the trigger for your call to action: the authoritarian regime part, or the human rights violations? Then, what “actions”? You don’t need to provide every detail of your argument in your thesis statement, but it doesn’t hurt to call out the category. Should we isolate China from international organizations? Deprive them of participation in trade partnerships? Deny them military aid or alliances? How, exactly, can the world take action against one of its largest, most populous countries with the worlds’ second-largest economy?

    Maybe you answer all these questions in your Background and Evidence section, but the question was about the effectiveness of your Thesis.

    Is my Argument Coherent?
    You won’t need to spend much space demonstrating China’s human rights abuses, Vox. The mere mention of the populations they have systematically marginalized, confined, and brutalized will be sufficient. You’ll spend most of your 1000 words making the case that the world SHOULD intervene in the behavior of a sovereign nation, and HOW.

    As your own backgrounder (and my remarks about your thesis) suggest, you might want to follow two important tracks in this essay, Vox. WHAT options we have to respond, and WHY we’re reluctant to exercise those options.

    Now THAT would be a worthwhile use of 1000 words. Check off the possibilities and identify why we haven’t acted on them.

    Do my Sources Support my Argument?
    1. The organ harvest source certainly supports the abuse argument, but you won’t need to do more than state that it happens and link to your source. One sentence at most.
    2. Ditto the sterilization of Uighurs. One sentence.
    3. (Make this 4) Domestic oppression of Ethnic Majority Chinese is a different category, but the NBA story is a distraction you should leave until you’re ready to explain why we DON’T ACT. The way the NBA backed down is a perfect source to support the way profits interfere with our conscience and integrity. Save it for the “second part” of your argument.
    4. (Make this 3) The brutal crackdown on Hong Kong activists shows clearly that China won’t limit its abuse to ethnic minorities. It wants total control over its entire sub-continent.

    In one of your Counterarguments (Why should we single China out?) you have anticipated the point I made in my notes about your Thesis. It’s the perfect corollary question to “why don’t we take more action?”

    I hope this answers your questions, Vox, but I imagine you’ll have further curiosities as we proceed. Don’t hesitate to ask for help WHILE you’re producing your OpEd draft.

    (Don’t bother revising this post. You’ve done a credible job already. Instead put your energy into your OpEd.)


  3. voxpopuli75 says:

    -The type of feedback I am looking for is if my thesis works and if my argument is coherent. In addition I am looking to see if my sources support my argument effectively.


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