Graham McMynn is a teenager who was kidnapped in Vancouver on April 4th and freed, in a large, noisy, and newsworthy police operation, on April 12th. Hao Wu is a Chinese film-maker and blogger who was kidnapped in Beijing on February 22nd in a small, quiet police operation not intended to be newsworthy, and who has not been freed. Read about it here, here, and here. Making noise about it might influence the government of China to moderate its actions against Mr. Wu, and can’t do any harm. Mr. McMynn’s kidnappers were a gaggle of small-time hoodlums, one of whom was out on bail while awaiting trial for another kidnapping (!). Mr. Wu’s were police. In a civilized country, the function of the police force is to deter such people and arrest them. A nation where they are the same people? Nobody could call it “civilized”. [Update, months later: Hao Wu is free.]


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April 18, 2006
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