"When Tang Xiaozhao first saw a copy of the pro-democracy petition in her e-mail inbox, she silently acknowledged she agreed with everything in it but didn't want to get involved.
Tang, a pigtailed, 30-something cosmetology major, had never considered herself the activist type. Like many other Chinese citizens, she kept a blog where she wrote about current events and her life, but she wasn't political.
A few days later, however, Tang surprised herself. She logged on to her computer and signed the document by sending her full name, location and occupation to a special e-mail address.
"I was afraid, but I had already signed it hundreds of times in my heart," Tang said in an interview.
Hers is the 3,943rd signature on the list that has swelled to more than 8,100 from across China. Although their numbers are still small, those signing the document, and the broad spectrum from which they come, have made the human rights manifesto, known as Charter 08, a significant marker in the demands for democracy in China, one of the few sustained campaigns since the 1989 Tiananmen Square protests. Those who sign the charter risk arrest and punishment."
Continue reading about this interesting development, as reported in the Washington Post, here.