Many of these interviewees were devoted to improving China or their lives, but experienced great personal hardship. There is one story of a man in his seventies who is almost singlehandedly working to keep lantern making alive in his area of China. There is another story of a shoe mender, whose dreams of attending university were dashed because her family was considered to have a “bad family background” due to a paperwork error that was not properly corrected. That shoe mender went through the stages of grief and finally decided to make it her life’s work to put her children through university and graduate school by living a life without basic comforts and saving every dollar of her shoe mending proceeds for tuition money. The courageous men and women featured in China Witness devoted their lives, relationships with their children, and every comfort in order to fight for what they believe in.
Sometimes I wish for a mistake
The longer that I wait the more selfish that I get
You seem like you'd be a good dad
Now all those simple things are simply too complicated for my life
How'd I get so faithful to my freedom?
A selfish kind of life
When all I ever wanted was the simple things
A simple kind of life