Scary Stat of the Day or Why the Paralympics Needs to Be the Disabled's Coming Out in China

There has been a lot of talk about the Olympics being China's "coming out party", which most intelligent China bloggers are calling bullshit. If you don't think China's already "out", then you've been under a rock for the past 15 years or so. However (and in light of the upcoming wheelchair basketball competition this weekend), the Paralympics really needs to be the coming out party for the disabled in China, hopefully it will be able to show that, yes, there are disabled people in China and that they can achieve a lot (if the Games are anything like in Athens, China will dominate in almost every event).

What motivated this post was an extremely scary stat in the papers today, published in an article announcing the first blind member of the Guangzhou Provincial government. Guangdong, which includes the major cities Guangzhou and Shenzhen, is far more advanced than most other provinces. However, according to the article (Chinese only), of the province's over 5 million disabled people, only 1% have university degrees and only 5% have high school degrees. I'm sure these stats are similar (or worse) around the country. Hopefully the media coming over for the Olympics will stay for the Paralympics and shine some light on this shocking situation.

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