Coronavirus, which originated in the Hubei province of China, has now spread to nearly 200 countries and has affected more than a million people worldwide. At least seventy thousand people around the world have died. But it seems, the xenophobic people of the world have decided that their person of hate won't be the virus, but everything that is Chinese. Yep. So, there has been anger brewing on social media against China and the Chinese for having "introduced the virus to the world".
With more than half the countries being forced into quarantine and isolation, people are lashing out against the Chinese for not being able to contain the virus in the initial stages of the pandemic. Hashtags like #MakeChinaPay and #ChinaLiedPeopleDied are also doing the rounds on Twitter.
In India too, hatred against China and everything Chinese seems to be on the rise. Even Chinese app TikTok hasn't been spared. #BoycottTikTok and #BoycottChineseProducts. Trends show that a large number of people are deleting TikTok from their phones and what's more alarming is that they are calling it "revenge" against China.
Tiktok, which is now one of the fastest-growing social media companies, is owned by the Chinese organisation Bytedance. The app has 800 million users across the world, and at least half of them belong to India. On average, Indians spend 52 minutes a day on TikTok. Well, what do TikTok influencers, whose only source of income may be the app itself, have to say about this "cancel culture" in India?
— Jami Kodanda Harsha (@JamiHarsha) March 30, 2020
— Mahender Vyas (@Mahendervyas276) April 3, 2020
Chinese Markets have been reopened to Sell bats, dogs & cats. They will never change.
At least for the sake of your Children's future #BoycottChina
— Dipiya Dilawari (@Dipdil) March 31, 2020
Since we are talking about boycotting Chinese products. Let's start with the app that's being used by most of us. Tiktok. #BoycottChina #BoycottTikTok pic.twitter.com/acAwZ002zZ — Salil Tripathi (@SalilTripathi17) March 30, 2020
China is the enemy, they unleashed the Corona Virus on the world, they lie, steal, threaten, and are coming for the domination of Canada. Say no to any & all Chinese ownership in Canada. Boycott anything & everything Chinese including their spy tool Huawei.#BoycottChinapic.twitter.com/AuB0UHXsqj
— Jesse (@JesseLonnen) April 1, 2020
The underlying tone seems to be that China unleashed the virus upon the rest of the world on purpose, and therefore all businesses and products originating from China must be boycotted. If we were really to boycott everything Chinese, we'd probably have to throw out a lot more than just TikTok.
Even the President of the United States, Donald Trump has previously endorsed such acts of xenophobia. He made it abundantly clear in multiple speeches that referring to the virus as Wuhan Virus or Chinese Virus is "payback."
In other bizarre news, lawsuits have also been filed in the US against China in order to make them "pay".
Yet, this is not the first time an epidemic has resulted in communities and people pointing fingers at each other. In the past, contagious diseases like the Spanish Flu, SARS or Ebola have led to communities being ostracized just because the disease in question originated from a specific region. Back in the 14th century, the emergence of the Black Death had triggered violence against Jews who were blamed for carrying the disease.
Through generations, such uncontrolled outbreaks have fuelled animosity against specific groups, and clearly history is repeating itself once again.