The garbage bin where the five homeless boys were found dead in Bijie, Guizhou province in China. Their death brought about a storm of angry condemnation of China's social ills and the goevenment on Weibo. Photo: Weibo.com
A piece of appallingly tragic news seized the top place of Weibo’s hot topic on Monday: Five homeless young boys were found dead in a garbage bin in Bijie, Guizhu province November 16 2012.
The five boys, all aged around ten years old, were found dead by an old woman who scrounged in the garbage bin. Police said initial investigation revealed the cause of death of the five boys was carbon monoxide poisoning as a result of a fire they lit up in the garbage bin for warmth. Informers said these boys were wanderers and were seen playing in the nearby construction site before the tragedy.
The police have determined that three of the five children were local people, and none of them went to school in the city. The security camera near the site was not clear enough to provide clue for the investigation.
A rain fall one day before the tragedy brought the temperature down to 4 degrees which might have driven the vagrant children to the garbage bin for protection and warmth, which tragically ended up in their death.
The news enraged the public, who voiced their anger and sadness on Weibo, China’s equivalence of twitter. Many quoted a famous line of Du Fu, a well-known poet from the Tang dynasty: While wine and meet rot behind the rich’s door, the poor die of cold by the roadside.
It was the ultimate sarcasm that children die of cold and lack of care in the world’s second largest economy with its government vowing to improve its people’s livelihood. This shocking news became an outlet for people to vent their frustration of China's social ills.
@ Mother baby Joy garden: The tragedy of the Little Match Girl became reality once more… Poor children… Hope they will no longer feel cold in heaven.
@ Uncle Dou: A sad society! Where is the social security the Government is supposed to provide? Maybe it’s not capable to guarantee even the survival of so many ordinary people from whom it gets no profit!
@ Nanyuan tel Beizhe: Heartache and speechless. I want to ask Boss Xi, what does he think of this?
@ Happy cat with boots: Stop mentioning the so-called harmonious society. It’s no difference to the past.
@ imsuperbella huaqiqi: Heaven Dynasty (Note: cyber talk referring to the CPC government) should take a look at its own wandering children and take care of its domestic mess before squandering away its money to other countries. What’s the use of a nice face? Inside it’s all rotten.
@ memories89 Xiaohao: (The government) has been talking about improving people’s lives for years, but it can’t even protect the basic rights of these children! … Strong youth is the provision for a strong nation. The children are our future. We should look after them.
@ Loving Nanning’s summer: A country that cannot even protect its children are the darkest and the most shameless!
@ Yang Erche not car: The leaders talk rubbish in their luxuriant meeting rooms while these children died of cold because they have nowhere to go!
@Richa 521: Have the Chinese people lost its ability to protect the next generation? Our children are dead wandering, wearing bikini as car model, and getting abused in kindergarten…
@ My man is Tabi: There are so many poor people… To all the parents: think twice before you have children. If you can’t be responsible for them, then don’t have them!
@ Devil-Hy: If you can’t give them a good life, don’t being them to this world to suffer… Even though abortion is abdominal, to die such a tragic death is even crueler.
@ Niuniu LJQ: If you have love to spare for stray cats and dogs, save some for these poor vagrant children!