I am posting this for friend-of-the-blog Huaiyu Wang; please direct any comments to him.
When asked about how the US should deal with the huge debt to China, one kid suggested to kill everyone in China. Jimmy commented: “That is an interesting idea!” The audience responded with a great laughter….
The content of the show (including a video clip) can be found at:
A Whitehouse Petition to investigate the racist content of the show was started on Oct.19:
With the number of Petitioner reaches over 55,000, ABC networks issued an apology on Oct. 27.
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It is true that one should not blame the kid too much as he is still too “young and innocent.” But on the other hand, would it be particularly horrible that such an idea of genocide should come out of the mouth of a young kid? Does this prove exactly the “lack of innocence”? What are more disturbing than the kid’s remarks, of course, is Jimmy Kimmel and the audience’s responses. It is puzzling how the suggestion for genocide can be “an interesting idea” and what makes it so funny to provoke a great laughter from the audience (or are they supposed to laugh at “any” idea these days?).
There seems to be something wrong. But what is it? Is it a lack of enough legal restraint for the media (e.g. too much freedom of speech)? Is it a lack of basic moral conscience? Is it the culture of egoism that precludes any respect for others other than their instrumental value? Or is it that the Chinese have been historically too impotent to wield the weapon of human rights to protect themselves in this country, so that they are still the sitting targets of racism (viz. they in a way “deserve” it because they failed to “fight” against it)? After all, with unprecedented economic interdependence of US and China, with all cultural exchange between US and China and growing academic programs promoting Chinese thoughts and culture, it is a great irony that there is still a tendency for major US media to present Chinese as “aliens” that should be killed without scruples.