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  • Sep 3, 2014
  • Updated: 12:42pm
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SOCIETY

Chinese Americans protest across US over Jimmy Kimmel's 'kill Chinese' skit

PUBLISHED : Monday, 11 November, 2013, 12:00am
UPDATED : Monday, 11 November, 2013, 7:04pm

Thousands of protesters, mostly Chinese, rallied in 27 US cities over a perceived anti-Chinese skit that aired last month in a talk show hosted by comedian Jimmy Kimmel.

Chinese state media reported that protests swept across the United States on Saturday. One was staged at the Los Angeles headquarters of broadcaster ABC, which aired the programme. Participants argued that ABC and Kimmel had not taken full responsibility for what they perceived as an insult to their heritage.

The protesters called for Kimmel to be fired over a segment of his talk show called "Kids' Table" that aired on October 16. Both ABC and Kimmel have since apologised for the episode, in which a six-year-old boy said "kill everyone in China" when asked by Kimmel how the US should pay back the country's US$1.3 trillion debt to China. Kimmel responded: "That's an interesting idea."

However, Chinese-American groups were not impressed. While some accepted the apologies that were offered after the subsequent uproar, others viewed them as insincere and demanded more. Charles Lu, chairman of the Roundtable of Chinese American Organisations, told the Los Angeles Times last week that they wanted a formal apology from ABC not just to the groups protesting, but to all Chinese people around the world.

Online pictures of Saturday's protests showed demonstrators, including college students, parents and children, dressed in red T-shirts with logos reading "Teach kids to love, not to kill", and chanting slogans such as "Kimmel must go" and "Shame on you, ABC".

Protest organisers distributed free posters to demonstrators. One featured Kimmel with a swastika just above his head.

"The protest plays an important role in improving our prestige and national cohesiveness," a Chinese demonstrator in New Jersey said on internet chat room Mitbbs. "The parade is intended to raise the social status of Chinese Americans in the US."

The segment also prompted the submission of a petition to the White House to investigate the Jimmy Kimmel Live! show on the grounds of offensive content. The petition garnered more than 100,000 signatures.

Xinhua said 800 people attended a rally in Washington, where a letter of protest to ABC was read out. The letter urged the broadcaster to fire Kimmel and hold a press conference to officially apologise to Chinese communities. It called on ABC to make sure that such "rhetoric of racial discrimination" was prevented by stepping up regulation of its televised content.

No one from ABC attended the event in Washington to accept the protest letter, reports said. Police were mobilised to maintain order, but the day ended without incident.

The demonstrations are believed to have been the largest held by the Chinese community in the US since those just before the Beijing Olympics in 2008 in response to CNN commentator Jack Cafferty labelling Chinese leaders "goons" and "thugs".

Video: Animators in China to Jimmy Kimmel: Why you shouldn't 'Kill the Chinese'

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This article is now closed to comments

jiawang@adb.org
So what's your point? Stay on topic. Don't get confused.
downtrend.com/robertgehl/china-releases-graphic-showing-nuclear-attack-wiping-out-western-us/
Reported last week China would target major cities on US West Coast.
jayb
which chinese media writing about nuking midwest? like to verify your source before i buy your argument.
speaking as an american, we are certainly not more popular than the chinese around the world (one can say we are less popular than the chinese especially in middle east, asia and africa). as such, i am not sure it is important to be popular worldwide. at the end of the day, it's all about $$$$.
wailunscmp
Most of the protestors are Chinese born in China (not so much American-born Chinese) so we can understand why they are agrieved. They are recent immigrants or students or Chinese citizens working in the US. They wont' understand satire because it doesn't exist in the PRC and certainly disallowed. Furthermore, the world in which they live in is a Chinese centric world even though they may be in a western country.
Kimmel's skit is terribly bad taste and very insulting but doesn't warrant such an uproar. It's just a awfully bad joke at the expense of other people. Chinese people need to mature up to understand what is a joke, even if it's a bad one. Han chauvinism or Chinese ultra-nationalism will only put off other non-Chinese. Remember, there are 6 billion non-Chinese in this world who won't look favourably to displays of ultra-nationalism and chauvinism. If China is to win the world over with soft power, it needs to wise up.
We should get angry over injustice, deceit, corruption, inequity, unemployment, high cost of living and poverty but not over a bad joke or satire.
BTW, I don't recall the Chinese government apologising to the American people after an important Chinese general threatened to nuke L.A. and the west coast a few years ago?
andrew.lee.ca
You appear to think airing and supporting pro-genocide statements is ever acceptable.
notjoke
you are wrong, most protestors are americans with chinese heritage, and interestingly, white people said asians have the highest IQ, which means asians are most wise people in the world. if you don't know anything, please don't act like you are the expert of it.
jayb
"most of the protestors are chinese born in china"? what is your source? i checked AP, NYT and could not fact check your claim.
gravity.rk
yeap, i heard that many of them are students from mainland.
XYZ
The original comment was made by a six-year-old child. Broadcasting it may have been insensitive and in bad taste. Both Kimmel and ABC have apologized. The protesters say they want Kimmel fired and a further apology issued to all Chinese everywhere in the world. In America, the right to peaceful protest is protected. Economic boycotts are a legitimate means to bring political pressure to bear on companies. If the protesters are successful, God bless them.
.
Of course, this terrible tragedy of thousands of lives ruined could easily have been avoided if the U.S. had simply granted Chinese a form of visa that prevented them from ever applying for American citizenship or right-of-abode in the first place, the way forward-looking Hong Kong does with Filipina domestic helpers.
.
notjoke
Who is U.S.? What is U.S.? U.S. is made of european immigrants, african immigrants, spanish latino immigrants, jewish arabian immigrants, asian immigrants including chinese immigrants, etc. It's an immigrant country. What are you talking about? You sound like U.S. has to belong to Euro white people who acturally robbed the land from the native amercians who you call indians.
lily.guo.961
Chinese Americans are still amercans. Especially if they were born in America. It is insulting for others to say otherwise. One thing to some of you people, WE ARE NOT CLOWNS OF ANY SORT

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