I’m not buying this. From my experience, Chinese netizens online can be amazingly jingoistic about other countries but does this represent the average Chinese person? I have no idea because I’m not from China.
However, I can say:
- are the people scorning immigration eligible to immigrate in the first place?
- there’s often a gap between what people say(esp. online anons) and what they do in reality. Would they really turn down a chance to move to the U.S.?
I also don’t like the way mainlanders grouch about overseas Chinese. Grouch about the first gen immigrants if you like but please bear in mind that if we were born overseas or underage when we moved, it definitely wasn’t our choice.
It might appear that we were living sybaritic lives while China was poor but there’s a price to be paid. It can be anything from loss of culture/language/identity confusion to discrimination and even being the target of violence.
Reading these articles are fine, but like you said, don’t ‘buy’ everything from it. Afterall, they are the ones providing the quotes from selected users…it probably would be best to go to the actual site and search for yourself, if anything.
Personally, I never met a mainlander that grouch about overseas Chinese…so, it’s probably only a group of them that do, and not all. After all, many Chinese who choose to immigrate back then did so without much choice either. Who would want to go to a place they never seen before, without knowing whether they can even go back home alive or not? (Though that would apply mostly to the very first immigrants) The choice to immigrate is mainly the concern of one’s family wellbeing…I don’t think there is much that can be blamed for that reason.
I occasionally lurk on mainland forums and there are a lot of angry people who claim that anyone who left China is a traitor and if you’re born overseas, you’re the descendent of a traitor. They also say outrageous stuff like if overseas Chinese got beaten, bullied or even killed overseas, it serves them right for leaving China. According to them, if you give up Chinese citizenship you’re not “Chinese” anymore, have nothing to do with China and should stop calling yourself Chinese.
Take a look at these comments about the Chicago beating incident (before people found out the attackers were also mostly Chinese):
Take a look, the vanity of Chinese people wanting to emigrate abroad, serves them right for being beaten to death! Anyone with a bit of national pride would not go abroad. Foreigners think Chinese people are fools. Foreigners don’t dare to be so cocky in China unless they want to be beaten to death! Why I fucking JB hate the most are those ABCs! Think you’re so niubi, right? Go out and you’re just like a dog!
I’ve seen even more rabid comments like this online.
What I want to know is whether the average person thinks like this in mainland or if it’s just the usual internet lunatic fringe.
I should give up reading mainland forums seriously, it’s not good for my mental health but it’s…addictive. Maybe I am a masochist :/
I think the fact that it’s on the net does have an effect… :’D Though of course, some of these opinions may be what the person really thinks. That comment is just one of the more extreme ones on there, and it’s not the majority, so I think it’s safe to assume only a few people in Mainland China think this way? If all those comments were like that, then that would be worrisome.
Also, I noticed a few comments about ‘ descendants of corrupted officials’ which would then relate directly to the government itself…I’m not sure, but it probably points out to people who have committed crimes while in the government and then immigrated to another country to save themselves. Anyways, those comments aren’t very intellectual since how would they know if they are a descendant of an corrupted official? But from that we can see why some have the mindset that immigrants are traitors. (Not that it’s a good reason, for the ratio of people who work in the government will always be alot less than regular citizens)
Based on personal experience, I would say an average person that lives in the mainland doesn’t think that all immigrants are traitors. When I went to the 2010 Expo in Shanghai, I remember a taxi driver saying that he wanted to apologize on behalf of the city, since we came all the way from another country to see this, and yet we have to line up beside everyone else who lives within minutes of the Expo. While I haven’t been to China alot, the times I was there I did not feel hostility… Besides, it’s a very extreme point of view. There are so many Chinese immigrants in comparison with other countries (seriously, there are Chinese people in almost every single country you can think of) how can every single one of them be a traitor?
One thing for sure though, China really does want to boost about what they have achieved now, what with all these tours especially made for overseas Chinese. For sure they want to show us, ‘look at our country now’.