Posting an anti-Mao video is never a good idea in China, but the police reaction against a child was immediate, disproportionate, and violent.
by Yan Mingli
A video went viral in China last week showing first a young boy slapping a small statue of Chairman Mao, then the same boy subdued, beaten, and detained by the police.
Some netizen expressed doubts on the veracity of the story. However, hours later, a document was published reportedly emanating from the Zhumadian City, Henan, Public Security Bureau, dated May 4, which looks genuine enough. To the time of this writing, the Zhumadian City authorities have not reacted by denouncing the story or the document as false.
According to the document, the 12-year-old male, whose last name is Chen, will be subject to criminal prosecution only if the People’s Procuratorate will move against him.
So far, he received some “corrective measures”: “(1) an admonition; (2) an order to repent; (3) an order to regularly report its activities; (4) an order to abide by specific norms of conduct; (5) an order to receive psychological counseling and behavioral correction; (6) an order to participate in social service activities; (7) an order to accept supervision and control.”
Apart from these measures, the boy will surely be traumatized by the police’s swift and immediate reaction. He will learn that slapping statues of CCP leaders, even in a playful context and by a child, leads to prompt and harsh reaction by the police in China.