Bipartisan Leaders Praise Falun Dafa’s Values, Fly US Flags to Celebrate Anniversary

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By NTD Newsroom
May 19, 2024Falun Gong
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Bipartisan Leaders Praise Falun Dafa’s Values, Fly US Flags to Celebrate Anniversary
A United States flag flies at the U.S. Capitol in Washington on May 13, 2024. (Lei Chen/NTD)

U.S. governors and lawmakers have proclaimed Falun Dafa’s values—truthfulness, compassion, and tolerance—and adherents’ contribution to local communities, at the 32nd anniversary of the spiritual practice’s introduction to the public by its founder Mr. Li Hongzhi.

“Celebrating this festive occasion allows us to reflect on the indispensable values of truthfulness, compassion, and tolerance for ourselves and each other,” said Pennsylvania Democratic Gov. Josh Shapiro in a letter to the Falun Dafa adherents in the Keystone State.

Sen. Chris Van Hollen (D-Md.) and Rep. Brian Fitzpatrick (R-Pa.) also sponsored flying U.S. flags over the U.S. Capitol to celebrate the annual occasion.

On May 13, 32 years ago, Mr. Li introduced Falun Dafa, also known as Falun Gong, to the public in northeast China. The spiritual discipline, which involves meditative exercises and moral teachings focused on improving the mind and body, is now practiced in more than 100 countries.

Through word-of-mouth, the practice grew to some 100 million adherents in China by 1999. That year, the Chinese Communist Party (CCP), which saw the practice’s popularity to be a threat to its absolute grip on power, started a nationwide campaign of persecution that include torture, psychiatric abuses, and the killing of practitioners for their organs.

Since July 20, 1999, when the CCP made arrests in over 30 provinces, Falun Dafa adherents have mounted 25 years of peaceful resistance, with volunteer-based coordination between those in and outside of China to raise public awareness about the CCP’s persecution.

Over the years, various campaigns have included anti-torture exhibits on the streets of Manhattan, the interception of Chinese cable TV broadcasting, and the distribution of homemade underground flyers and news bulletins in China.

Besides informing the public about the persecution in China, Falun Gong practitioners have continued offering the practice’s mind and body benefits via free teaching to the public.

A flag of the United States
A flag of the United States was flown over the U.S. Capitol on May 13, 2024, at the request of Rep. Brian Fitzpatrick (R-Pa.) in special recognition of Mr. Li Hongzhi, the founder of Falun Dafa. (Courtesy of Jennie Sheeks)
Falun Gong practitioners take part in a parade
Falun Gong practitioners take part in a parade to celebrate World Falun Dafa Day while calling for an end of the persecution in China, in New York City, on May 10, 2024. (Samira Bouaou/The Epoch Times)

Governors Proclaim Falun Dafa Day

U.S. governors in multiple states have acknowledged the positive spirit that Falun Gong adherents demonstrated in their local communities.

Many have found “a deeply rewarding spiritual path in Falun Dafa,” Indiana Republican Gov. Eric Holcomb said in his proclamation designating May 13, 2024, as Falun Dafa Day in the Hoosier State.

Maryland Democratic Gov. Wes Moore complimented Falun Dafa practitioners’ “demonstration of high integrity and ability” and said it “merits our great trust and respect” when he awarded them the Governor’s Citation for their “outstanding services” to his state’s citizens.

In recognition of this year’s anniversary, Minnesota Democratic Gov. Tim Walz granted a certificate to local Falun Dafa practitioners “for their continued commitment to service and for facilitating cultural engagement opportunities in communities across Minnesota and throughout the world.”

Nebraska Republican Gov. Jim Pillen also declared May 13, 2024, Falun Dafa Day in his state.

Falun Gong adherents in the Washington
Falun Gong adherents in the Washington DC metropolitan area celebrate Falun Dafa Day at the Washington Monument ground on May 11, 2024. (Bin Xue for The Epoch Times)

Bipartisan Congratulations from Lawmakers

Sen. John Cornyn (R-Texas) and Ted Cruz (R-Texas) congratulated Falun Dafa practitioners in Texas on the anniversary of Falun Dafa Day.

“I applaud each of you for sharing the illustrious history and rich culture of China as well as drawing attention to the violence and persecution the country has endured,” wrote Mr. Cruz. “Falun Dafa practitioners have continued to demonstrate the determination and courage to stand up for Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance.”

Sen. Ben Cardin (D-Md.), chair of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, issued a Certificate of Special Recognition in honor of “Master Li Hongzhi introducing Falun Dafa and the principles of Truthfulness, Compassion, and Tolerance.”

House representatives across the aisle, including party leaders, also celebrated the occasion with their constituents.

House Minority Leader Rep. Hakeem Jeffries (D-N.Y.) recognized the Falun Dafa community’s “impacts on facets of life on their members and the public.”

“During its many years as an organization, Falun Dafa has been an integral and positive part of the lives of many,” he said in a statement. “Not only is it a wide-reaching movement, but its practices also have tangible effects on our society.”

Rep. Elise Stefanik (R-N.Y.), chair of the House Republican Conference, sent Falun Dafa practitioners a special congressional recognition for the practice’s anniversary.

From The Epoch Times

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