Chinese Virus

This is a discussion panel from UCB LP380 on a podcast ‘I Become a Person of Suspicion’ - The New York Times

Mark Ma

Apr 13 at 12:42pm

I haven't experienced any of the racist behavior in the podcast yet, but I've heard of them and my parents are worried about my safety.

The whole thing has nothing to do whether coronavirus originates from China or not, it's just an excuse to express hate against a certain group of people.

You see, there are certain stereotypes that are cast upon us when talking about a specific group of people.

One the other side, for most of my Chinese friends, it's always a priority to protect their own safety over other things like political engagement to achieve respect from others. Chinese philosophy does emphasize humbleness and forbearance, which is often interpreted as weakness and easy to be bullied. Most of the Chinese would just ignore that racist behavior cause they sound really dumb and are not worth the risk to fight with some dangerous people. Things may be different for Asian-American since they don't share the same culture of forbearance. Now I'm not commenting on whether such forbearance is a good thing or not.

Personally, it's not even important whether the coronavirus is called the Chinese virus. But I do mind that in general, because it's a good tool to incite racial hatred. After all, politics are just means to steer public opinions, especially those without logistic thinking capability, no matter in China or the United States.

Truth always sounds harsh, so people tend to listen to those political slogans where they found themselves being favored than others. To a politician, it's just his job.

Ellen Rosenfield

Apr 14 at 1:42pm

You're right that some people interpret not fighting back as a sign of weakness. I'm assuming there are bullies in every culture that feel that way. And the US has always had bullies. And there have always been racists

But right now, since our president is seen by many of us to be both a bully and a racist, people with these tendencies have been given permission to behave badly. Usually such people would be frowned upon, but not now.

I sincerely hope this era passes quickly!

Mark Ma

Apr 16 at 5:06am

I'm kinda feeling sorry (not supportive) about Trump lol. He has to be desperate to use those racist weapons so the public focus can be redirected from the terrible virus situation. Use China as an excuse is tricky and subtle, despite not so morally and logically correct.

You can imagine how Biden and democrats will later repel those under-educated speeches by redirecting the public focus back on the terrible performance of Trump's administration against the virus.

Then you'll probably hear Trump criticizing Biden for being close to and trying to absolve China from the virus problem...

I guess no president (or candidate) of the U.S. dare show any positive attitude towards China today. It's literally political correctness nowadays (well it has its history), though people usually don't say it out loud.

So my conclusion is that, although being a little pessimistic, such an era is going to last long. Later there might be a morally better president, but those subtle anti-China attitude is going to stay around.

Nobody's fault, being racists is just human nature. It doesn't follow the logic, but who can say they have 100 percent totally no bias against any group of people?

Let's hope education saves humanity.