Gun violence diminishes US image in China
If gun violence is a consideration in assessing Donald Trump’s “Make America Great Again,” it is by no means good news for the US. Although it has not received much attention, a recent shooting in South Nashville, Tennessee is surely a case study for Chinese wanting to better understand the US.
A 74-year-old Chinese man was gunned down while picking up trash outside his South Nashville home last week. The investigation is ongoing. Only a few US mainstream media outlets covered the incident. Shootings are an all too frequent occurrence in the US, and in this case the victim was an elderly Chinese man. From the perspective of “news value,” the South Nashville shooting doesn’t meet the standard of “novelty” and “impact,” and therefore, the US media have apparently diverted their attention from the tragedy to more eyecatching events such as “Russiagate” and Trump’s Asia tour.
From October’s mass shooting at a music festival on the Las Vegas Strip and this month’s Texas church massacre, to last week’s senseless murder in Tennessee, the frequency of gun murders in the US has astounded the world. Statistics from the Gun Violence Archive shows the number of gun-related incidents has reached 53,446 in 2017, resulting in more than 13,000 deaths and covering almost all US states. Astonishing, isn’t it? Citizens of few other countries would accept such attacks.
In the past, most Chinese associated the US with sound social welfare, an enviable healthcare system, highquality education and a friendly environment. Nowadays America’s image in the minds of many Chinese is far different. A glance at US-related news mainly features the country’s chaotic politics, the fight between Trump and the media, and the unimaginable gun violence. The US is no longer a secure country in the eyes of many Chinese. Worse still, the government has yet to take effective actions to curb gun violence, and American citizens can only hope they are lucky enough to avoid being attacked. Chinese have long been bored by the excuses given by US politicians for their inability to pass effective gun control legislation. Chinese have no right to interfere with US domestic affairs, but we are shocked at the country’s indifference to the loss of life.
While Trump continues to mouth the slogan “Make America Great Again,” he is failing to ensure the personal security of ordinary US citizens. Instead of deploying incredibly costly military excursions overseas, he should rethink his priorities.