A group of Hong Kong residents have placed an advertisement in a popular tabloid calling people from mainland China ‘locusts’. The term is an insult commonly used on the web by some of the city’s residents to refer to mainlanders.
Blatant xenophobia has worsened in recent years. Internet forums amplify anti-Chinese sentiments, labelling them as a ‘nuisance’ and a ‘disease’. Other nationalities, including Malaysians, had all at some point been equal victims of the blame game. A slew of personal experiences posted online, places the blame for the actions of some Chinese individuals on an entire country.
In Singapore, we often speak up against racism of other ethnic races. Some of us have ourselves, suffered discrimination in one form or another. Yet today, there is only silence and condonation when the attack falls upon the foreigners.
It is easy to blame an other, but is it untrue that our place of origin cannot define us as a whole? Even if we are culturally different, our birthplaces can never make us less than human.
“All penguins are the same below the surface, which I think is as perfect an analogy as we’re likely to get for the futility of racism.”
– Russell Brand