But “foreign virus” is xenophobic. Much less “Wuhan virus.” Which is racist.
I read BIRTH OF A VIRUS … several days ago and found the commentariat there split: Between 1) people who are critical of China’s political system and public sanitation practices; and 2) those defending China, primarily by accusing the blogger (Regie Hamm) of xenophobia and racism. For good measure this faction attacked the United States health care system as insufficiently socialized.
Mr. Hamm did call China a “cesspool of filth.” He gave first hand evidence. For a large plurality of the population, China’s sanitation most certainly is… um, unsanitary.
It is true there have been individual instances of xenophobia on New York subways, for example, and many people decided that dining out at Chinese restaurants – in crowded sanctuary cities where immigration credentials are suspect – was not their first choice. Even before their dining out preferences were eliminated.
Donald Trump’s travel ban on flights from China, the infection source, was not racist. Nor was Mr. Hamm’s post.
No country has a perfect health care system, but some are objectively better than others. Mr. Hamm’s suggestion was that Chinese public health suffers from the country’s totalitarian political system. This observation is not xenophobic. It is indisputable.
The Chinese Communist leaders razed the Wuhan wet market – a theretofore approved pit of disease and pestilence. Only after acknowledging it was ground zero for a major new pathology, however.
And that’s not to mention world famous unbreathable air, drinking water on par with the input to Mexican waste processing plants, and worse than San Franciscan sidewalks.
Xenophobia and racism cannot be reasonably inferred from the article. Briefly paraphrased, Mr. Hamm said: “A totalitarian government, well known to hold little regard for the effect on its citizens of third world class public sanitation, will also be likely to produce a substandard health care system.”
This view is not likely to please Xi Jinping. It invites consideration of the lingering effects (unfettered, preferential abortion of girl babies) from China’s former one child policy… and it might rekindle inquiries into forced organ harvesting. Most particularly, it could raise more questions about the covering up of the coronavirus outbreak. After previously having done the same thing with diseases like swine and bird flu. China’s health system has a track record.
Then, as the Quillette article below notes:
[T]he Chinese government has learned to weaponize our own progressive tendencies, and has learned to exploit false accusations of racism against democratic societies.
The Big Lie: Chinese officials are pushing a conspiracy theory that the United States Army planted the virus in Wuhan.
Mr. Hamm’s critics are probably not Chinese disinformation agents, but they certainly read the talking points. (“The Washington Post routinely comes delivered wrapped in a special advertising section called “China Watch.” It’s official, state-sanctioned Chinese propaganda that reports fake news.”) Perhaps they are merely unable to distinguish between the Chinese people and the Chinese Communist government. That does say something about their knowledge of history and political theory.
NO. IT. DOES. NOT.
Oh, and this just in. 4:49PM:
Time to ban wet markets