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中国人权律师团律师2022年新年献辞

春风定能起涟漪——中国人权律师团律师2022年新年献辞

1925年,26岁的新月派领军人物闻一多先生发表诗作《死水》:

这是一沟绝望的死水,
清风吹不起半点漪沦。
……

1946年,由青年诗人而为名流贤达的闻一多先生在死水般的绝望中被暗杀于昆明街头。

自西方列强先以商贸、继以枪炮叩关以来,昏睡千年、滞如死水的中央帝国终不得不睁眼看世界,被迫接受己不如人的残酷现实,一辈辈先知先觉者被迫迈开痛苦而必须的近代化、现代化进程,一代代人都以更新的角度或更高的视野推动着中国的求富、求强即转型进程。然而,对于中国这个人类唯一的数千年治权不曾中断的老大帝国,转型实在是困难重重,民间有志之士虽热望变法、转型,然变法之路却总被在朝者颟顸阻绝;一代代弄潮儿,不断尝试、探索,虽每有进步,却总是缩手缩脚、畏首畏尾,终不免悲观绝望。中国百余年转型失败的教训表明,不是落后就要挨打,而是固守落后、闭关锁国才会挨打,而是抗拒先进政治文明才会挨打,而是抵制普世价值才会挨打。

“这是一沟绝望的死水,清风吹不起半点漪沦”,就是闻一多先生针对1920年代国势衰颓、前路渺茫之无边绝望而发出的呐喊。这呐喊,不是对绝望的屈服,而是对绝望的控诉;不是时代的悲歌,而是力图刺破绝望并振奋人心的时代强音。

同样的绝望和呐喊并不只适用于闻一多先生的那个时代。在他身后,绝望依旧如影随形,一次、两次、多次降临在他的国人身上……

一百年后的2021年,令人绝望的处罚和刑罚一桩又一桩。

2021年1月中、下旬,知名人权律师卢思位、任全牛同时分别被四川、河南司法厅吊销律师执业证书;几不旋踵,2月初,春节前,袭祥栋律师又被山东司法厅吊销律师执业证书;10月,北京市司法局非法注销了知名人权律师蔺其磊的执业证书,而蔺其磊担任主任的北京市瑞凯律师事务所早已于1月4日被非法注销。

2月14日,大年初三,出狱不久的甘肃农村青年、原北京大学保安张盼成再次被抓,据传已被判刑三年,罪名不详。

5月18日,被贵州大学“开除”的经济学教授杨绍政先生被秘密抓捕,以颠覆政权罪被指定监视居住、逮捕;5月28日,王爱忠先生被以寻衅滋事罪拘留、逮捕;6月4日,广州高恒先生因言论被抓,后以寻衅滋事罪逮捕。

7月20日,长沙富能程渊、刘永泽(刘大志)、吴葛健雄被以颠覆政权罪强判刑罚。

7月23日,著名独立知识人李悔之(李立群)先生在“没有人能看清前途和希望!从来没有那样绝望过”的无边绝望中服毒而逝。

8月31日,大午集团案二审定谳,孙大午先生全家几近“满门抄斩”。

10月29日,知名公民活动人士张宝成先生二审维持原判三年六个月刑罚。

前检察官沈良庆先生被以寻衅滋事罪强判三年,欧彪峰案被多次恶意退查,徐秦女士被以煽动颠覆罪逮捕,公民记者黄雪琴、王建兵被以煽动颠颠覆罪逮捕。

12月8日,以寻衅滋事罪被抓捕的知名维权人士和独立知识人陈云飞先生忽被以强制猥亵罪、猥亵儿童罪重判四年。显然,不是陈云飞先生犯有猥亵罪,而是法律、常识和人类智商遭到猥亵。

12月14日,人权律师陈家鸿被以煽动颠覆政权罪强判三年。

这个原本高大上的罪名多年来被随意适用,泛滥成灾,民间和国际社会视其为褒奖和荣誉,民间戏言“这年头不蹭一个颠覆罪名都不算坐牢”。与众多被强加颠覆罪名者相比,陈家鸿律师获得这一罪名的奖励似乎稍有“碰瓷”、“蹭热度”之嫌,对早年仅被以寻衅滋事、破坏秩序之类普通罪名判刑的人士也稍显“不公”。陈家鸿律师这笔买卖实在是赚大发了,理当庆贺!

同一日,北京司法局举行了吊销知名人权律师梁小军执业证书的杀猪式听证会;16日,司法局即以迅雷不及掩耳(盗铃)之势决定吊销梁小军律师的执业证书。

12月14日,大学女教师宋庚一因课堂言论被学生举报,后被校方除名,师生伦理再受拷问;12月19日,小学女教师李田田因声援宋庚一而被精神病,全网哗然。被精神病之蛮横手法屡屡上演,人神共愤!

12月15日,知名诗人王藏(王玉文)及妻子王利芹夫妇煽动颠覆政权案在云南楚雄州中级法院开庭,王藏发表了激情洋溢、极富浪漫主义的诗歌体最后陈述,提出了元宇宙级别的“未来的原告”、“今天的被告”之前瞻追问。夫妻同罪,亘古未有,堪称传奇!

厦门案许志永、丁家喜、常玮平、李翘楚最长已被关押两年。

人权律师李昱函、覃永沛和公益法律人郝劲松案久拖不决,公检法争相“创新”,将补充侦查、延期审理等形式“合法”而实质违法的程序花招用尽用足。12月31日,年度收官之日,覃永沛案开庭。丈夫覃永沛被煽颠,妻子邓晓云担任辩护人,夫妻联袂对决公检法联手,足为荒诞年份的一出法律喜剧。

王藏、王利芹,覃永沛、邓晓云,两对南国夫妇将一并进入中国法律史册!

从年初、经年中、到年末,知名维权活动人士郭飞雄(杨茂东)先生、知名人权律师唐吉田先生均被无端禁止出境陪护病危的妻子、女儿,并于近日双双失联。

2021年,人权律师、公民记者张展女士继续牵动着全球华人乃至全世界的目光。宁为玉碎、绝食抗争,其决绝、其从容、其空灵而高远,可歌可泣!

2021年,疫情已肆虐整整两年、三个年头,运用健康码、行程码、大数据对个体的过度管控,对个人隐私的公开刺探,均以疫情防控之名大行其道,国家级别的疫苗自愿接种在地方层层加码为强制接种,接种不良事件时有所闻。

2021年1月28日,腊月十六,知名艺术家、“呐喊”系列作品创作者刘进兴(追魂)先生出狱。

2021年8月4日,我们迎回了苏州维权公民群体的标杆人物戈觉平先生。戈觉平先生以癌症之躯扛下四年半牢狱,身体严重受损。

2021年,人权律师先驱之一高智晟先生的强迫失踪进入第五个年头;武汉市民、公民记者方斌继续下落不明。

2021年,我们目睹了政法王之一傅政华的落马。他的落马早在包括律师在内的法律界的意料之中,唯其落马的日子10月2日颇为意外,然傅之类酷吏、墨吏任何一日落马都不失为正常。律师群体苦傅久已!我们难掩心中窃喜,我们有理由幸灾乐祸,因为我们无法理解也不能原谅他对律师的那种莫名仇视和迫害;同时,作为律师,我们的专业视野提醒我们不必大喜过望,因为他的落马,正如周永康、王立军等等恶吏的落马一样,并不能根除积重难返的法治乱象,我们对法治前景依然忧心忡忡。

2021年,香港局面令人揪心,12月29日,何韵诗等六人突然被抓;台海局势、中西关系亦是愁云暗淡。

更多的荒诞案件和事件以及受打压者的名字不必一一列举……

凡此种种,怎不令人深深地绝望?怎不令人万念俱灰?怎不令人心如死水?

绝望始于觉醒,觉醒源于理性的焕发,人必理性焕发而后方能觉醒、绝望、死心,才能遁世或弃世,如纵身蹈海的邹容,如奋笔发出《死水》呐喊的闻一多,如“义无再辱”的王国维,如与尘世决绝、自沉太平湖而不留一字的老舍,如饮毒而逝的李悔之……

绝望至极而后希望生。

近代以来的绝望史可以回溯得更早。郭嵩焘,实质的醒眼看世界第一人,仅因不畏毁谤、出任中国第一位驻外(英)公使而被守旧卫道士诬为汉奸,两年后铩羽而归,晚年以“拿舟出海浪翻天,满载痴顽共一船。无计收帆风更急,那容一枕独安眠”一诗,表达了极度的落寞和绝望。

这种绝望绝非仅仅个人的绝望,而是国人整体的绝望。这种绝望源于理性、理想与现状的碰撞,源于转型之艰难甚至不可能,即黑格尔所论断的“中国的历史本质上看是没有历史的”那种中央帝国特有的千年循环和静滞。

我们绝望,我们与郭嵩焘、闻一多同此绝望!我们的绝望,和郭嵩焘、闻一多的绝望,虽时空相隔,却一脉相承!

我们可以绝望,我们有理由绝望,因为这是历史性、群体性、转型时期必有的绝望。

我们所处的是个乍一看繁花似锦的时刻,也是道德溃败、人人自危的时刻;是许多“高端人士”自信满满的高光时刻,也是众多中底层人口生计艰难、生不起、病不起、死不起的绝望低谷时刻;是立法已较为完善、基本实现有法可依的时刻,也是纸上的法律难以变为现实、有法不依相当普遍的时刻……

怎么办?怎么办?是任凭绝望吞噬我们,从绝望走向更深的绝望,还是振奋精神,驱赶、摆脱并战胜绝望?

我们确信,“这是一沟绝望的死水”所表达的不是对绝望的无奈,而是对战胜绝望的深切期待;“清风吹不起半点漪沦”所蕴含的也不是对绝望的束手无策、无可奈何,而是对青萍起风的强烈憧憬。

1925年1月1日,稍早于闻一多先生的《死水》,鲁迅先生“因为惊异于青年之消沉”而作《希望》一文,疾呼“希望,希望,用这希望的盾,抗拒那空虚中的暗夜的袭来”。

每一时代、每一代人都有其时代的和一代人的绝望。同样,每一时代和每一代人也都其时代的和一代人的希望。这是人类进步的铁定路径。

绝望如无底深渊,使糟糕变得更加糟糕,我们不能一直绝望,不能听凭绝望之渊把我们吞噬;我们必须心怀希望,希望如巍峨的高山,如无垠的大海,如浩渺的云天,给我们以激励、遐想和指引,使我们战胜绝望,走向理想和未来。

作为法律人,我们的希望和理想就是法治、宪政,这是全人类法律人的共同希望和理想。

我们希望,有法不依、权力任性的乱象终将改观;我们的职业使命就是以法律、法理制约权力、保障权利。为践行这一使命我们已饱受挫折,我们仍痴心不改、无怨无悔,虽伤痕累累、损兵折将,仍飞蛾扑火、屡败屡战。我们确信,法治、宪政必将在华夏神州落地生根,中华民族能够像所有法治先行民族一样学会法治、享受法治,能够跻身法治国家之林,受到世界各法治国家的尊重。

2022年,我们将迎来余文生律师、周世锋律师的回归。

2022年,我们希望困扰人类三年的疫情能够平息,经济活动和日常生活回归常态。

我们,全体中国人,振奋精神,抖落掉2021年的绝望,疫情的绝望,法治乱象的绝望,生计艰难的绝望,满怀希望走进2022年。用我们的希望告慰闻一多先生:我们不在绝望中沉沦。

在2022年来临之际,让我们齐声朗诵:

等待春晖洒落,法治含苞待放。
等待春月高挂,守望直到天明。
等待春雷乍响,山河草木清新。
等待春风吹拂,死水也起涟漪!

The Spring Breeze Will Surely Bring About Ripples
--A New Year's Message for 2022 from the Lawyers of Human Rights Lawyers Group of China


In 1925, at the age of 26, Mr. Wen Yiduo(闻一多), a leading poet of the New Moon Poem School, published the poem "Dead Water".

This is a ditch of desperate stagnant water,
The blowing of the breeze cannot wrinkle it,
with even half of a single ripplet.
......

In 1946, Mr. Wen Yiduo, a celebrity turned into from the before young poet, was assassinated on a street of Kunming, in the midst of the despair like the stagnant water.

Since the Western powers knocked on the state gate first by trade and commerce then by guns, the central empire, which had been for over a thousand years fallen into a deep trance and stayed at a standstill like stagnant water, finally had to open its eyes to the western world and was forced to accept the cruel reality that it was inferior to the powers. Group and group of pioneers of prescience had and have to start the painful and inevitable steps of modernization, and generation after generation have been pushing forward China’s course of “Seeking Wealthiness and Becoming Strong”, a course of transformation, from newer perspectives or through higher visions. However, for China, the only aged empire with thousands of years of uninterrupted domestic royal ruling, the social transformation is really too tough to happen. Although the private individuals with aspirations have been eager to upgrade the society and transform the country, the path of change is always peremptorily blocked by those in power. Generations of pilots trying and exploring, with progresses achieved at some stages, they always have been kept their limbs fettered and been flinching at the start and outcome of the change, and eventually they cannot help but be pessimistic and desperate. The lessons of China's unfinished transformation over the past hundred years show that it is not the backwardness that invites the western bullying, but the stubborn stickiness to the backwardness and the closed-door lockdown, the resistance to advanced political civilization, and the rejection of universal values that invite the bullying.

The lines, “this is a ditch of desperate stagnant water, the breeze cannot bring about a single ripplet”, are the cry of Mr. Wen Yiduo against the boundless despair of the worsening state situation and the uncertain future of China in the 1920s. This cry is not a submission to despair, but an accusation of despair; it is not a lament of the times, but a strong voice of the times that tries to pierce the despair and uplift the people.

The same despair and cry did not only apply to Mr. Wen Yiduo's time. In his wake, despair continued to follow up like a trailing shadow, befalling his countrymen once, twice and numerous times ......

One hundred years later in 2021, desperate punishments and penalties come one after another.

In mid and late January 2021, well-known human rights lawyers Lu Siwei(卢思位) and Ren Quanniu(任全牛) had their practicing certificates revoked by the Sichuan and Henan Departments of Justice respectively; shorter than the instant of turning heels, in early February, days before the Chinese Spring Festival, lawyer Xi Xiangdong(袭祥栋) also had his practicing certificate revoked by the Shandong Department of Justice; in October, the Bureau of Justice of Beijing illegally cancelled the practicing certificate of well-known human rights lawyer Lin Qilei(蔺其磊), while the Beijing Rui Kai Law Firm(瑞凯律师事务所), of which Lin Qilei was the director, had already been forcely terminated on January 4.

On February 14, the third day of the Lunar New Year, Zhang Pancheng(张盼成), a young man in his twenties, from rural Gansu and a former security guard at Beijing University, was arrested again shortly after his release from prison, and was rumored to have been sentenced to three years in prison for an unknown charge.

On May 18, Mr. Yang Shaozheng(杨绍政), an economics professor who had been "expelled" from Guizhou University, was secretly detained, and kept in custody by residential surveillance under designated location(指定居所监视居住) and arrested for subversion of power; on May 28, Mr. Wang Aizhong(王爱忠) was detained and arrested for picking quarrels and provoking trouble; on June 4, Mr. Gao Heng(高恒)of Guangzhou was detained for his expression of speech and then arrested for the same charge as Wang Aizhong’s.

On July 20, Changsha Funeng’s (长沙“富能”)Cheng Yuan(程渊), Liu Yongze (Liu Dazhi)(刘永泽、刘大志)and Wu Ge Jianxiong(吴葛健雄)were sentenced to different penalties for subversion of power.

On July 23, Mr. Li Huizhi(Li Liqun)(李悔之、李立群), a reputed independent intellectual, committed suicide by drinking poison in the endless despair described by his last words "No one can see a clear future and hope! Never before had I been so desperate".

On August 31, the appeal trial of the case of the private company Dawu Group(大午集团)was decided, and the entire family of Mr. Sun Dawu(孙大午)was nearly totally imprisoned.

On October 29, the appeal trial for Mr. Zhang Baocheng(张宝成), a well-know civil activist, affirmed the three and half years penalties of the first trial.

Mr. Shen Liangqing(沈良庆), a former prosecutor, was sentenced to three years by the charge picking quarrels and provoking trouble, Ou Biaofeng’s case(欧彪峰) was repeatedly and maliciously returned for so-called supplementary investigations, Ms. Xu Qin(徐秦) was arrested for inciting subversion of power, and citizen journalists Ms. Huang Xueqin(黄雪琴) and Mr. Wang Jianbing(王建兵) were arrested also for inciting subversion of power.

On December 8, Mr. Chen Yunfei(陈云飞), a well-known human rights activist and independent intellectual who was arrested on charges of picking quarrels and provoking trouble, was suddenly sentenced to four years for forced indecent assault and child molestation. Apparently, it was not Mr. Chen Yunfei who was guilty of molestation, but rather the law, the common sense and the human intelligence were molested.

On December 14, human rights lawyer Chen Jiahong(陈家鸿) was heavily sentenced to three years of imprisonment for inciting subversion of power.

This originally high-sounding charge has been applied so arbitrarily for many years and has been so disastrously flooded that it is viewed as a commendation and honor by Chinese civil society and the international community, and it is joked that “in these days it is not real jail time if one failed to manage to be charged by subversion”. Compared with many others who have been imposed with subversion charges, Chen Jiahong's reward for this charge seems to be somewhat “porcelain bumping” (碰瓷)and “clout-chasing”(蹭热度), and it is also slightly "unfair" to those who were only sentenced for ordinary charges such as provocation or violation of social orders in the early years. Lawyer Chen Jiahong simply won too much reward by his sentence and deserves our congratulations!

On the same day, the Bureau of Justice of Beijing held a pig-killing style of hearing to revoke the practicing certificate of Liang Xiaojun(梁小军), a well-known human rights lawyer; on the 16th, the Bureau decided to revoke the practicing certificate of Liang Xiaojun at a speed of lightning raid and in a manner like “the cat shuts its eyes when stealing”.

Also on December 14, a female college teacher, Song Geng Yi(宋庚一), was reported by one of her students in secret for words of her classroom lecture and later on unemployed by the college, and what the teacher-student ethics should be was once again queried by public; on December 19, a female elementary school teacher, Li Tian Tian(李田田), was forced into a psychiatric hospital by local officials merely because of her expression of solidarity with Song Geng Yi, and the whole cyberspace was in an uproar. The brutal tactics of forcefully diagnosing healthy persons as psychotic were repeatedly staged by local governments, and have long aroused indignations of God and human!

On December 15, the first instance trial for the case of the couple of Wang Zang (Wang Yuwen)(王藏,王玉文), a well-known poet, and his wife Wang Liqin(王利芹), charged for inciting subversion of power, opened at the Yunnan Chuxiong Intermediate Court, and Wang Zang delivered his poetic trial-closing statement, full of passion and romanticism, raisig the metaverse-level questioning of "I would be the plaintiff of the future" though "I am the defendant of the present time". The Husband and the wife are equally guilty of the same charge. It is unprecedented in human history and can really be called a legend!

The longest custody of the Xiamen case’s Xu Zhiyong(许志永), Ding Jiaxi(丁家喜), Chang Wei Ping(常玮平) and Ms. Li Qiaochu(李翘楚) have exceeded two years.

The cases of human rights lawyer Li Yuhan(李昱函), Qin Yongpei(覃永沛)and public interest legal professional Hao Jinsong(郝劲松) have been dragging on and on, and the police(public security), the prosecutor and the court are scrambling to "innovate" in using up all possible procedural crafts such as supplementary investigation and adjournment of trial that seem "legal" in form but illegal in substance. On December 31, the year-end day , Qin Yongpei's case was scheduled to be heard. Qin Yongpei, the husband, was imposed the charge of inciting subversion of power, and his wife, Deng Xiaoyun(邓晓云), acted as a defender for him. The husband and the wife team up with each other to duel with the police, the prosecutor and the court as a whole, which can truly be called a legal comedy of this absurd years.

Wang Zang and Wang Liqin, and Qin Yongpei and Deng Xiaoyun, the two couples from southern part of China, will be recorded into Chinese legal history together!

From the beginning, through the mid-year, and to the end of this year, Mr. Guo Feixiong (Yang Maodong)(郭飞雄、杨茂东), a well-known human rights activist, and Mr. Tang Jitian(唐吉田), a well-known human rights lawyer, were both banned from leaving the country for no credible reason to accompany their critically ill wife or daughter in US or Japan, and were both suddenly disappeared early December, suspiciously under the control of police.

In 2021, Ms. Zhang Zhan(张展), a human rights lawyer and a citizen journalist, continues to attract the attention of Chinese people worldwide and the world at large. She has been determined to be a jade broken(宁为玉碎), and has been on successive hunger strike to protest against her sentencing. Her resoluteness, her calmness, her ethereality and her loftiness of spirit are all worthy of highly praising and shedding tears for!

In 2021, the COVID-19 epidemic has been raging for two full years and spanning to third year, and the use of health codes, trip codes, and big data for excessive control of individuals, and the public spying on personal privacy, are all rampantly practiced in the name of epidemic prevention and control. The voluntary vaccination at the national level is cascaded into mandatory vaccination at the local level, and adverse vaccination incidents are being heard from time to time.

On January 28, 2021, the 16th day of the twelfth lunar month, Liu Jinxing(online name “soul-chaser”)(刘进兴,网名“追魂”), a well-known artist and creator of the "Voicing" series of art works, was released from prison.

On August 4, 2021, we welcomed back Mr. Ge Jueping(戈觉平), the benchmark figure of Suzhou right-defending citizens. Mr. Ge Jue Ping had survived the four and a half years’ jail life while

ill with cancer, and his health was severely damaged.

In 2021, the enforced disappearance of Mr. Gao Zhisheng(高智晟), one of the pioneers of human rights lawyers, entered its fifth year; the whereabouts of Fang Bin(方斌), a citizen of Wuhan and a citizen journalist, continued to be unknown.

In 2021, we witnessed the fall of Fu Zhenghua(傅政华), one of the kings of legal authorities. His fall was previously expected by the legal profession, including lawyers, but the day of his fall on October 2 was quite unexpected, but it is not unusual for a curel as well as corrupt official like Fu to fall on any and each day. The lawyer community has been suffering Fu for too long a time! We cannot hide our happiness with this guy’s fall, and we have reason to gloat about it, because we cannot understand and cannot forgive him for his inexplicable hatred and persecution of lawyers. Meanwhile, as lawyers, our professional vision reminds us that we should not be overjoyed, because his fall, just like the falls of Zhou Yongkang(周永康), Wang Lijun(王立军) and a lot other evil officials, can not eradicate the inroooted legal chaos. We are still deeply worried about the prospect of the rule of law.

In 2021, the situation in Hong Kong is heart-wrenching. Just three days earlier, on December 29, six people, including Ms. He Yunshi(何韵诗), were suddenly arrested; the situation across the Taiwan Strait and the relationship between China and the West are also cloudy and gloomy.

Too many other absurd cases and events as well as a lot of names of persons oppressed are not necessarily be listed one after another.

......

In facing of all the above-mentioned, how can we not be in deep despair? How can we not feel as if our thoughts have blasted to ash? How can our heart not be like dead water?

Despair begins with awakening, and awakening derives from the rejuvenation of rationality. One must make his rationality rejuvenated, then awakening, despair and extinction of thoughts follow up, and finally one may seclude from or abandon the world, like Zou Rong(邹容) who jumped into the sea, like Wen Yiduo who shouted the "dead water" cry, like Wang Guowei(王国维) who left his last words "morally refuse to suffer more humiliation", like Lao She(老舍) who resolutely cut off from the earthly world and killed himself by sinking in Taiping Lake(太平湖) without leaving a single word, like Li Huizhi who commited suicide by drinking poison......

Despair must go to its extreme and then hope is born.

The history of despair in the last two centuries can be traced back to even much earlier. Guo Songtao(郭嵩焘), the very substantially first person to see the western world with awake eyes, was falsely accused of being a traitor by the old guards only because he defied slander and became China's first ever minister to foreign countries (Britain), and repatriated two years later in big defeat. In his later years, he expressed his extreme sense of desolation and despair by the poem “By sea I bounded to foreign countries for my office, the waves soared and the slanders roared into the sky; on the same ship around me were the stubborn subordinates. With no means to pull the sail down, letting the wild wind blowing wilder; even a mere pillow was not allowed, for me to have a deep sleep alone”.

This kind of despair is not just the despair of individuals, but the despair of the nation as a whole. This despair stems from the collision of reason, ideals and the status quo, from the difficulty and even impossibility of social transformation. It is the millennial cycle and stagnation characteristic of the central empire, just as Hegel asserted, "China's history is essentially without history".

We despair, and we share this despair with Guo Songtao and Wen Yiduo! Our despair, and the despairs of Guo Songtao and Wen Yiduo, are of same essence and derived from the same origin, though separated by time and space.

We can despair, and we have reasons to despair, because this despair is a historical, cellective and inevitable one in a period of transformation.

We are in a time of prosperity at first glance, but also a time of moral collapse and a time that everyone is at uncertainty; a time of highlight when many "high-end people" are over-complacent, but also a time of worst despair when many middle- and lower-classes people are struggling to make a living, unable to afford to give birth, to get sick and to die; a time when legislation has been quit inclusiv and there exist laws basically covering and to be followed by every area of society, also a time when the laws on paper are hard to be followed in reality and governmental violatios of laws are omnipresent ......

What to do? How to do? Should we let despair consume us and merely go from despair to bigger despair, or should we lift our spirits to drive away, get rid of and overcome despair?

We are sure that "this is a ditch of desperate stagnant water" is not an expression of helplessness to despair, but a deep expectation of overcoming despair; " and what “the breeze cannot bring about a single ripplet" conveys is that not just having our hands tied and taking no action in face of despair,but a strong longing for the wind to rise from above the green weeds.

On January 1, 1925, a little before Mr. Wen Yiduo's "Dead Water," Mr. Lu Xun(鲁迅) wrote his essay "Hope" since he was "astonished at the sinking of the youth," calling out “Hope, hope, use this shield of hope to resist the onslaught of the dark night in emptiness”.

Every age and every generation have their own despair. Likewise, every age and every generation have their own hope. This is the ironclad path of human progress.

Despair is like a bottomless abyss that makes the bad even worse. We should not keep ourselves addicted to despair, and we should not let the abyss of despair swallow us up; we must keep hope in our hearts, since hope are like a lofty mountain, like the boundless sea, like the immense cloudy sky that gives us inspiration, imagination and guidance to overcome despair and move forward towards our ideal and future.

As legal professionals, our hope and ideal is the rule of law and constitutionalism which is the common hope and ideal of all human legal community.

We hope that the chaotic situation of non-compliance with the law and arbitrariness of power will finally change; our professional mission is to restrain power and safeguard rights by law and the underlying principles of law. In order to fulfill this mission we have encountered too muchfrustrations. We are still obsessed with this mission, no regrets, no repentances. Though bruised and battered, and suffered and lost, we still proceed regardless of all those repeated defeats, like the moths flying onto fire. We are sure that the rule of law and constitutionalism will take root in the entire territory of China, and that the Chinese people will learn and enjoy the rule of law like all other rule of law pioneer nations, and will be among the rule of law countries and respected as a peer nation by all other rule of law countries worldwide.

In 2022, we will welcome the return of lawyers Yu Wensheng(余文生)and Zhou Shifeng(周世锋).

In 2022, we hope that the epidemic that has plagued humanity for three years will subside and economic activities and daily life will return to normal.

We, all Chinese people, lift our spirits, shake off the despair of 2021, the despair of the epidemic, the despair of the legal chaos, and the despair of the hardship of livelihood, and enter 2022 with hope full in our hearts. Let us console Mr. Wen Yiduo with this very hope of ours: we will by no means sink in despair.

On the upcoming moment of the year of 2022, let us recite in unison:

Waiting for the spring sunshine to fall and the rule of law to bear buds and bloom.
Waiting for the spring moon to hang high, holding together up till the dawn.
Waiting for the spring thunder to suddenly ring, the mountains and rivers and grasses freshened.
Waiting for the spring breeze to blow, even the dead water rippling!


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