On the contrary, once arrested the Han people are generally prosecuted to the full extent of the law as opposed to minority groups who gets off much much easier. With that in mind, we have to realize that the police are mostly Han and they are also human, so they might not go after every vigilante they see after the terrifying events of July 5th.My take on this whole situation is this: The Uighurs seem to have instigated these riots and killed a lot of people merely for being Han. Those responsible should be punished lawfully. However it also seems that Han Chinese returned the favor in vigilante violence with a nasty racist character (i.e. going after any Uighur regardless of if they killed people or even participated in riots). Han Chinese that did this should also be punished lawfully. Chinese security forces seem to be doing a pretty good job of being neutral in this situation. If they really want to restore lasting order to the streets they will have to go after Hans that committed violence just as much as they go after Uighurs. However I doubt that will happen.
I empathize with their feelings of being surrounded, but to be honest they don't know real hardship because the government pampers them. The truth is there are people living in far worse conditions in China, and still the government prioritize minority groups above others.As for the causes of this violence, it seems to me that the main thing that motivated the Uighurs was a sense of being surrounded and pushed aside, drowned in a sea of Han, in their own "homeland". Mix that with a bit of radical Islam and the fact that there is really no way for them to effectively voice their concerns through politics, and you have a recipe for violence. Uighurs should learn Mandarin if they feel disadvantaged; life is unfair sometimes and the Uighurs should understand that. People all over the world have to learn new languages to get employment. But they should also be able to speak their own language and practice their own customs within their own community. Ensuring that right would go a long way towards ending the violence and Uighur separatism. So would making a real effort to educate Uighur children in Mandarin (maybe that's being done already, I don't know, regardless its probably thought of/would be though of as "brainwashing" by Uighur separatists and dumb Westerners).
Uighurs have every right to practice their own customs, they can speak their language in the public and no one will stop them or reproach them. On the contrary, I still see some North Americans who would walk up to Chinese people speaking Chinese on the streets and say "Speak English".
As it stands the Chinese government supports all minority culture as long as it respects basic human needs and has no political elements. Uighurs do have their own cultural schools where they can teach their young, but the problem is that's all they teach, and that's not going to help them much when they are a minority.
For example, I live beside a Jewish school, I can go inside and speak English with any one of the students and we would communicate perfectly fine. However, if I went into an Uighur school in China I would be amazed if more than 20% of the students can speak fluent Mandarin.
Their cultural school does not teach them how to survive in a modern world, no language fluency, no practical skill = no job, no income, in North America we call those people bums, but when the same kind of people appear in China, North Americans call them freedom fighters.It seems to me that the Uighurs are trying to build a sandcastle to protect them from the oncoming wave of China's economic rise. All sandcastles fall eventually, and the Uighur's sandcastle isn't even very large or well built. As it crumbles they will become more and more violent and China will inevitably win. Then the Chinese will be stuck with the problem of a bitter minority underclass that underperforms economically, in education, in society, has higher crime rates, etc. etc. Lose-lose for everybody. The Chinese government has the opportunity to manage the Uighurs transition to minority status in the modern era. By allowing them to keep and promote their language and culture while integrating them into the Chinese economy by ensuring Uighur education, especially in Mandarin, and responding firmly but fairly to any violence, Uighur or Han, they can tie the Uighurs to China more firmly than repression ever could.
It is easy for other people to feel bitterness against the Han people, Hans come from the most intensive competition for survival simply because of their vast population, so they can endure hardships no other people can. As a result, they can prevail in situations where others falter, this gives the false impression Hans are privileged, and create cultural bitterness.
For example, in the gold rush period, Han people were sometimes defaulted the worst possible locations when no Caucasian man wants it. Because of the stoic nature of Han people, they were able to make a decent living off of those gold sites where no white man could, this resulted in much bitterness.(Source can be found from any North American high school History text book)
Minority events on holidays occasions are over represented compared to their population, minority students in Universities are also over represented, but the Uighur population as a whole does not want to be part of a greater society.
I can say that the Chinese government has tried to appease the minority groups through pretty much any means within reason. Most likely anything you can think of has either been considered or tried, but people will always find things to complain about.
When I see these events, I just want to shout out in frustration, WHY ARE PEOPLE NEVER SATISFIED?
A split second I always scold myself for my naivety, the answer is constantly staring at me in my face......