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Daily Drip

“America Started as Pirates”: China Reacts to “Lifetime B*tch” Tweet

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If you’ve been on Twitter recently, you may have witnessed this rather direct bombshell moment:

When Tennessee Senator Marsha Blackburn tweeted a line about China’s “5,000 year history of cheating and stealing,” people were not happy. The line was criticized as meaningless, seemingly content in its identity as a half-baked dig against a fifth of the world’s population.

A slew of commenters dismissed the line as racist and Sinophobic, many pointing out that the history of Blackburn’s home country was actually born in theft.

“Check out what immigrants to the Americas did over past centuries – like cheat & steal from the Native Americans who initially welcomed them,” reads one tweet.

But no tweet rivaled the impact of China Daily journalist Chen Weihua’s succinct “Bitch.” The tweet rang out through cyberspace, receiving over 15,000 retweets and 55,000 likes at the time of writing.

When the smoke cleared, Chen returned to double down on his statement.

The tweets caused a firestorm, with international media outlets reporting on the exchange. Chinese news outlets also picked up the story, drawing reactions ranging from amused to indignant.

“I really wonder where westerners get their sense of superiority from,” reads one highly rated comment.

“Europe and America started as pirates, killing people everywhere to establish colonies,” reads another. “Really shameless.”

“When Chinese medicine was already treating people for syphilis and gonorrhea, the King of England was still using 40 drops of human skull fluid mixed with sheep’s stones as a treatment for minor strokes,” wrote a third user. “When China outlawed the marrying of close relatives, Europeans were still sleeping with their mothers and daughters to preserve the purity of the family line!”

“Sounds like Game of Thrones,” another replied.

Adan Kohnhorst
Adan Kohnhorst is a Shanghai-based writer, producer, and multimedia artist, and the Associate Editor at RADII. His work has been featured in publications such as Maxim and the Chinese-language StreetVoice, and he’s an active member of the hip hop and DIY music scenes in Shanghai, NYC, and Dallas. He learned Mandarin in high school so he could train at the Shaolin Temple, but now just uses it to interview rappers. He blogs about China and Asia on Instagram: @this.is.adan