China Can't Walk in America's Racial Shoes

While I struggle with two future posts at the moment, one of which may never see the light of day, it’s all so easy to just stop and write about something easier.

So let’s talk about Race in America.

And if the mood hits, Democracy, too.

But my story takes a brief detour through Nanjing, Christmas Eve 1988.   A few Africans were bringing some Chinese ladies to a party.  A security guard, thinking the only way a Chinese Lady would be with an African Male was if she was a prostitute, refused her entry.  And just like that Anti Black riots ensued for the next several days.  No one was killed.  No guns apparently fired. 

After all it is always easier to write about a subject when one’s passion rules the day.  And yet while writing this I felt the need to stop for a few days to further reflect.  Some topics cannot just be pounded out. 

For several days I’ve sat. Wondering where this way overdue post will take me.

Right now I’m quite positive that China’s papers have forgotten the above incident in Nanjing, that I read about as a university student, and yet are full of all the indignation and hypocrisy that China’s vast army of “control the narrative” warriors can muster.    And it’s quite the story to tell.  Pretty much that America has a “Black Problem” that will never go away.  That America is an incessantly racist culture and Blacks just don’t get a fair shake.  Let me first say Blacks have been getting killed in America by cops in this country for not decades, but perhaps centuries.  That’s a lot of injustice to make up for Folks.  And when it comes to Racism in America Black-White(as if they forget the Hispanic and Asian populations exist) relations are an easy target not just for the Chinese Press, but for anyone half literate enough to pick up a newspaper.

It’s not fun to be overseas and see one’s country plastered in a negative light.  

Smug Japanese reporters broadcasting in front of a rusty, locked American factory gate.
Chinese playing and replaying the Rodney King beatdown.

It’s quite shameful. 

And we all know how impressionable the Chinese People are, right?

But then I remind myself that is what life is like On Top of the Hill.  While overseas, all Americans are assumed to be foreign policy experts.   Everyone everywhere demonizes you, and demands you explain why America’s foreign policy is so overbearing and unfair(there is never a good foreign policy) towards their own particular countries.

Those that live On Top of the Hill in fact live in a bubble.  Under a very fucking big microscope.   

Their  interactions with others studied, replayed and reexamined for all the World to see.

What to do?


Minus a terrorist explosion,  One never hears of social upheaval in England or France, or anywhere else.  Because perhaps the internal upheaval that every country faces and lives with simply doesn’t make the cut.   Rather, everything in America is news.  Every fart, sigh, and wrinkling of the nose. 
In China The Party drives the narrative.  In America The Media drives the narrative.  Or rather, they decide what you will hear and listen.  Good news is boring.  It’s not exciting and good news doesn’t make a reputation.  It’s the same I’m sure in every democratic country.

The power of the internet fools one into thinking Chaos and Disorder are at hand.  The ability to instantly communicate news(we choose the bad) instantly inflames not only a People but everything their ideals stand for.   

So it is with race riots in America. 

My gut instinct tells me that all my readers from Andorra or Morocco, let alone from China will need a lot of persuading to agree that in my view Race Relations in America really aren’t all that bad.   For example, there is a lot of interracial dating, and marriage. 

But in America we strive for the Perfect Society.  The American Media will demand no less.  Every imperfection, freckle, sweat from a butt crack or sneer caught on camera is there for the world to see, examine and comment on.

We Americans are acutely aware of how imperfect our society is.  The Media will not let us forget it.  The American Media considers it its job to be the judge, jury and executioner” of everything vile about this place.  And it is there for all to see.  And as a democratic, free nation we are all better for it.  Around the world nations know more about America and its infinite number of imperfections than we ourselves will ever know about those that exist in other countries. 

Other nations shrug and move on. Others do not.

China has a lot of people continuously working on the goal of making America the laughingstock of the world in the Chinese Press and amongst The People.  The Party controls the narrative.   You are excused for confusing American Media with either the China Media or The Party for believing American Society is on the precipice of a dark hole that swallows all hope and light.

Meanwhile, I get to see the warts of my country not only in America but from a Chinese TV screen as well.

But if one has lived in China and if one can get past the emotional knee jerk response that overwhelms any American of how far short from that Media Induced Standard we fall then the casual observer will know only all too well how far away China is from perfecting their own Nirvana as well.

Those of us that travel to both Europe and Asia will easily understand just how unique a position America is in.  Korea, Japan, China as they are all fairly homogenous societies are adversely quite racist compared to the USA.   America is probably more heterogeneous than at any time in its history.   My subdivision is minority white.  Majority Asian.  One black family.  

It’s funny the more undesirable a place the Chinese Press make America out to be the more Chinese I seem to come across here.

I can leave my subdivision, turn right and travel in a straight line 8 miles to the other side of the city and see nothing but Hispanic and Black.  If you want racial harmony America is a rough place to start.  But if I were to turn 35% of your country into a minority population how would your side of paradise fare?

My guess is probably not as well as America has. 

But you won’t see that in a Chinese newspaper.  Because that is not the narrative the Chinese Media wishes to portray.   

Am I the pot calling the kettle black?  You know I am.

Am I writing from within a Glass House?  Of course.

But I figure its all fair game when one nation calls out another. 

You probably expect me to lay down a line about China here.  The wanton and undocumented police brutality, the lack of an iphone video calling out a social injustice on China TV, etc but I won’t.

Our system is the product of a free press.   The light shines where it wants to.  Their system chooses not to have a free press, and as such it avoids the dark side.   Ours seeks it out. Two nations came across a path that diverged into the unknown.  They each took a separate turn.  And the result….well, the result is already known to us all.


Popular posts from this blog

KTV in China

The worst sex I've ever had with China Girl is with China Wife

Pros and Cons of a Chinese Wife