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  • Dec 27, 2014
  • Updated: 11:10pm
NewsWorld
CANADA

Picture of boy urinating in Vancouver bin sparks anti-China vitriol

'Mainland Chinese' blamed after photos of young child's act in a Vancouver mall go viral on web

PUBLISHED : Friday, 30 August, 2013, 1:31pm
UPDATED : Saturday, 31 August, 2013, 10:58am

Photos of a small boy urinating into a rubbish bin in an upmarket Canadian shopping mall have sparked a debate about standards of behaviour in the Vancouver satellite city of Richmond, North America's most Chinese municipality.

Photos of the Asian boy with his pants around his knees at the Richmond Centre mall, steadied by a woman as he stands on the rim of the bin, provoked a fierce reaction after they were posted by Twitter user Brandon Beavis. The vehement response mirrors that which followed an incident in Hong Kong last month, when a Putonghua-speaking girl urinated on an MTR train.

This kind of undignified behaviour is common amongst Mainlanders
internet user

The images of the boy, aged about two or three, went viral this week and were the subject of a report on the main CBC news bulletin on Thursday night.

Internet reaction focused on the ethnicity of the child and woman - and varied according to the proclaimed ethnicity of some respondents. Some said such behaviour was typical of "Asians" or "Chinese", but the fiercest reaction came from people who identified themselves as Hongkongers or Canadian Chinese, and said they were certain the pair in the photo were mainland Chinese. There was nothing in the photos to prove this.

The responses reflect changes in the demography of Vancouver and its satellite city of Richmond, which have seen waves of Chinese migration, first from Hong Kong in the 1980s and 1990s, followed by even greater numbers of mainlanders in recent years. Richmond is now about 50 per cent Chinese by ethnicity.

"That is not how normal civilised people behave, and it is inexcusable," wrote SkinnyPupp, whose profile on the Revscene website - a car modification site popular with young Vancouver Asians - listed his hometown as Hong Kong. "This is not a 3rd world country", wrote another Revscene user.

A posting on the Vancitybuzz news website prompted "Embarrassed Chinese-Canadian" to suggest that the ethnicity of the Richmond Centre pair was obvious. "Why not go one step further and say Mainland Chinese," the user wrote.

"This kind of undignified behaviour is common amongst Mainlanders in Hong Kong. I can't have a conversation with my cousin in Hong Kong without him telling me at least once how much the Mainlanders are mucking up the city," wrote Canucks Star, a member of a fan forum for the Vancouver Canucks ice hockey team.

Some users unfamiliar with discontent over the supposed behaviour of mainlanders in Hong Kong were confused by the ferocity of the reaction.

The CBC report noted that going "diaper free" had long been practised in China and a veteran foreign correspondent said "manners … and the standard of toilets" in rural China were "very different" to those in Canada.

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This article is now closed to comments

Stephan
What do you mean beautiful islands etc...Ever heard about the pollution, the violation of human rights etc. etc. which China is infamous for? Think twice before you post a silly comment like this!
pseudotriton
Isn't it interesting that comments from some of the real Canadians actually try to put things into a little perspective, mentioning the differences in practices in China, etc., whereas comments from HKer's are basically lopsided condemnations? For one thing, do you think Caucasians can tell or even care about the difference between HKer's and mainlanders? They can't even tell Japanese from Chinese for Pete's sake. You're all just "Asians" to them. And like some have pointed out, such indecent behavior are carried out by grown men (and women, as I have personally witnessed) of all ethnicity and nationality all the time. But it's always the HKer's who want to make a mountain out of a molehill when it involves some mainlander (kids). You never hear a peep from HKer's when a wasted Frenchman is pi$$ing all over the place outside a bar. Get over yourselves, "HK people".
HiggsSinglet
Must be a mainlander, very typical of what they do!!!
lizapak
Poor old men ravaging in bins for food... and look what they'll find!
chaz_hen
What's everyone so stressed aboot? Hongcouver is practically a Chinese city anyway...
Dai Muff
"Hongkongers' behaviour demonstrates a typical colonial mentality." Ah, that must be why the Shanghainese are just as outraged by kids peeing on the MTR there, and Guangzhou citizens are outraged by images of a boy taking a dump on the MTR there. There's also widely circulated footage from Shenzhen of a woman taking a dump in a metro elevator. All of which have caused big internet controversies there in the past couple of months. Don't try to make this about race or "colonialism" when it is about incontinence, lousy parenting, and lack of culture and concern for others. I am sorry but the "Why shouldn't you deal with my cr*p?" attitude sadly doesn't stop with them being kids. Your racist obsession just shows the chip on YOUR shoulder.
Dai Muff
Well we're paying for the mainlanders' kids.
jenniepc
Article clearly stated that the boy's, in the photo, identity can not be verified. Why Hongkongers or Canadian Chinese vehemently claimed that the pair in the photo were mainland Chinese?! If the river is polluted, it does not give anyone dumping rubbish. Besides, the boy can be a Canadian. One can not be judged based on his appearance. As long as the boy is a Canadian citizen, then, he is a Canadian.
Jennie PC Chiang/江佩珍 08/31/13 美國
Dai Muff
People take my money when I travel too. I still consider it is only civilised to follow THEIR culture when I am in THEIR home.
ssslmcs01
Would you mind explaining how the mainlanders have benefited Hong Kong's economy significantly?
Causing inflation that has made it nearly impossible for the majority of Hong Kong people to purchase a flat, in fact inflating the price of nearly everything in Hong Kong. And, causing a shortage of commodities such as infant milk formula.
As a resident of North District I have to put up with the visitors from the mainland on a daily basis. It is easy for a person living far away from the problem to say they are "happy to put up with their shortcomings" when they don't have to deal with them (the shortcomings).
There are two possibilities, you are among the one percent (the richest Hongkongers) or you have no clue what you are talking about.
In response to "batwong": Are you comparing tourism to hoarding goods? People who spend a wee in Canada or France are likely staying in a hotel and going sightseeing. Spending money on meals shopping etc. That can't be compared to the nuisance parallel traders cause clogging up the streets and trains in N. District.

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