People joke, and jokes mock, and by the way, mocking hurts.
We yearn for entertainment, spices of life, an escape out of our daily lives. We joke; we jest. Often totalitarian regimes conjure up “national enemies”, as to the Nazis are the Jews, as to the 50s U.S. are the “damn communists”. Well then, China is commonly regarded as a totalitarian regime, at least by the west.
So what are our “national enemies”?
Americans frequently overestimate the “oppressiveness of the totalitarian Beijing”. Judging by the fact that your average American cannot differentiate between Japanese, Chinese, Korean, the people, and the languages, sometimes I just think the average American conflates Imperial China, Japan, North Korea, Korea, Panda Express, Stalinist USSR, and anything that seems “oriental” into one giant concept known as the “communist China”.
Sometimes to comedic effects: before entering Beijing, some paranoid tech worker was surprised to find that the Chinese government had complete disinterest in his copy of “1984”, his laptop, and his thoroughly encrypted hard drive.
Well, why would the Chinese government just randomly confiscate or decrypt some businessman’s laptop?
Anecdotes like this pops up quite a lot: the U.S’s liberal stances on feminists theory or queer theory or whatever theory that the Chinese mass simply does not care about, some random American still thinking that Chinese people can take concubines, the U.S’s view on Dalai Lama, on Tibet.
American people can bring great fun to China. American people are funny!
They want racial equality! They want Muslim refugees into their nation despite them being in a war of terrorism against Muslims.
What a joke!
Well the problem with this “America is so funny” view is that: first, this is what Chinese media wants us to believe, and well, you know what Chinese media is like.
Chinese people maintain a weird sense of cynicality. They do not believe the “positive” aspects of many of the Chinese state media. They openly jest that the media only depicts the “good”, the “harmonious”, and the “politically correct”. Because of course if you do not judge those with a negative light you will be discarded as “naive”.
Yet the Chinese people fail to apply the same principles to their foreign news. They judge their news purely on face value. They like to mock the foreigners; they know that Americans are bad at maths, and every foreign news education-related, due to the nature of mass news, always seem to descend to the common denominator of “haha, these dumb Americans, so bad at maths”, or due to China’s long history of playing history whataboutism, descend to something like “but you Americans have such a bad human rights record too!”.
The second problem is simply, the American people also view Chinese people as ignorant, and usually on online forums, Chinese people are “fun”.
They cheat, and yes, when they were not allowed to cheat, they even marched on the streets in protest for “not allowing us to cheat is unfair when everyone else cheats!”.
They obey to their party; they are racists: hey they even played this super racist ad on their TV! They are great copycats, with a complete disregard for copyrights, or even human rights!
Well I am going to say that I am personally not feeling good when nations are making fun of each using facts that no one dare to critically consider.
It is like a perpetual “mocking” war to feel superior to other nations, and that is fine, as nationalism and patriotism always helps a nation, except to the individuals who should focus more on their own rationality.
And I do not know the solution at all. I am writing this just to procrastinate my finals review anyway.