The First of all Virtues – Part 9/9

There are always exceptions when it comes to practicing piety. Even in China, there will be the occasional rude individual. The thing is, I haven’t seen or heard one yet, and I have visited China many times since 1999.

I did have a disrespectful, American born Asian student (once) during the thirty years I was a teacher.

I also had a small number of hard-working, respectful students from all ethnic groups—even those that were American born, but those types seem to be a dying breed in Western culture.

My best students were usually immigrants that came to the United States after living in their birth country for several years.

In addition, I had one American born student enter high school as a freshman after being home taught for eight years by his Caucasian, conservative Christian parents. He was a great person—polite and he worked hard.

He never said, “Hey, old man.”

Visit this site and you will quickly discover that someone does not agree with me about China. China, rude, dirty and annoying.  Maybe this person has a Chinese face.

The Chinese can be very abrupt and rude with each other but usually treat foreign faces with respect.

Return to The First of All Virtues Part 1 or return to Part 8


Lloyd Lofthouse is the award-winning author of the concubine saga, My Splendid Concubine & Our Hart. When you love a Chinese woman, you marry her family and culture too.

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4 Responses to The First of all Virtues – Part 9/9

  1. tvnewswatch says:

    Indeed, the link is to my blog post. I did not hate everything about China, but there are many aspects which can make life uncomfortable. Living in China is very different to being a tourist. Anyone wishing to spend any length of time in country would be well advised to purchase a VPN prior to arrival. The free ones often fail. Internet access is probably the biggest frustration for most westerners, especially if they use social networking sites. I met many good friends in Beijing through the use of Twitter and Foursquare. Such interaction is more difficult now that Foursquare is blocked and that Twitter have rolled out OAuth instead of basic authentication.

    Regards cleanliness. Of course you cannot avoid bad hygiene. It is not just China. Bad hygiene can be seen in Europe too. But it might be advisable to pick restaurants carefully, use your own chopsticks and carry soap with you!

    Rudeness does not apply to everyone. And it could be recognised as partly cultural. A Chinese friend told me much of the problem was down to education. And this may well have much to do with the apparent ignorant attitudes seen at bus stops and on subway stations as people push and shove as they board or disembark.

    There are many things are are great about China, and I shall indeed return. But it has a long way to go. But then again, the west too has certain problems it needs to address, least of all the high crime rate.

    As regards my article, it has raised a great deal more interest than I would have expected and drawn many comments with similar stories. There are no comments from Chinese users to date, but that is not surprising given blogger is blocked in China!

    • Thank you for the comment and what you say here is correct. I’ve had similar experiences riding the subways and busses in Shanghai and Beijing.

      I remember returning to the U.S. after being gone for more than a month and riding BART (Bay Area Rapid Transit) home. It was strange sitting in a subway car that had four people in it since public transit in China’s major cities is often very crowded and people do shove and push to find enough space to stand. Since there are so many people in China’s cities, pushing and shoving in crowded conditions is normal.

      However, what a Westerner sees as rude behavior is often normal in China as the Chinese often grow up treating each other that way. I wonder how it is in India where crowds are probably similar. A friend recently spent several months in China on a photo shoot for his next book and said it was harder and more challenging to get around in India than China where he has lived for years.

      Yet, I’ve also been treated with courtesy and kindness in China while in the U.S. I’ve been treated rudely. It depends on the circumstances.

      One thing I like about being in California is I can cross a street with a better chance of making it to the other side. Most cares in California stop for a pedestrian. In China, you take your chances.

      As for censorship, China may drop the Net Nanny one day but is it necessary? China appears to be doing fine without opening up to the world.

      There’s a down side to too much freedom of expression. Just look at most political campaigns between Western political parties like the American democrats and republicans and you will see what I’m talking about. They lie, misrepresent facts and often slander each other with abandon.

      Then consider conservative talk radio and often-deceitful political voices like Rush Limbaugh.

      What might happen when everyone with a political agenda is allowed to twist information to influence the reactions of citizens who don’t’ have good reasoning abilities? In America, everyone with a political agenda is doing it, which causes much confusion and anger.

      In China, only the centeral government seems to be doing it and it appears that their goal is to maintain harmony in a country with too many people and too many spoken languages and a long history of more rebellions inside China than most countries have had in their histories.

  2. I take it that the link leading to “Rude, dirty and annoying” was yours? It’s too bad you had such an experience. I’ve witnessed Chinese treating other Chinese without courtesy but I haven’t been treated that way–yet.

  3. tvnewswatch says:

    Thank you for the link posted on your website. Indeed I do not agree with many of the aspects about China you highlight. However, as a serious blogger, photo-journalist and commentator I can often be sharply critical. China has many good points. Many people, once friends, can often open up their homes and be extremely hospitable. I have had taxi drivers going out of their way to find places one has sought. One even stopped further up the street after dropping me off, left his cab in the middle of the road and come running back to point out the bar I’d been seeking. Sadly these are rare but welcome occurrences. The anonymity of blogging can of course hide many things, one of which gives you the the impression I may have a ‘Chinese face’! I am in fact British, though it has been said I remind people of Johnny Depp [I really am not kidding with you].

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