People the world over are watching the American presidential race, and Chinese netizens have come up with some interesting nicknames for the candidates.
Trump may call her “crooked” Hillary, but Chinese internet users have given Hillary Clinton two even more unflattering nicknames. Given Clinton’s less-than-glowing track record with China, many Chinese netizens, in online forums like Tianya Communities and Baidu Tieba and on blogs like Weibo and WeChat, call her the “old hag” (lao niang men). Others call her the “old witch” (lao yao jing).
This trend has actually been going on for years now. Clinton’s China-bashing include regular criticisms of China’s actions in the South China Sea and harsh statements on China’s human rights violations have left bad tastes in the mouths of the Chinese people, and it shows in the harshness of the online community.
While Chinese netizens sometime refer to Donald Trump as the “old monster” (lao guai wu), which isn’t that much better than Clinton’s nicknames, don’t misinterpret the nickname as overwhelming Chinese dissatisfaction with Trump’s candidacy.
Although Trump regularly targets China in his speeches, causing the Chinese government to label him a “big-mouthed, racist clown” and criticize his views, the Chinese people are surprisingly fascinated by this boisterous new figure in American politics. In fact, there are numerous Donald Trump fan clubs online in China.
Many Chinese netizens respect Trump as a businessman. They also see him as an individual who will do what he says — or at the very least try. They also appreciate the fact that Trump is not a career politician, people who tend to look out for their own interests over the interests of the people they serve.
Of course, the most important reason Chinese people tend to favor Trump over Clinton is simply that Trump is not Clinton. Over the years, he has been more of a friend to China than Clinton, and he is willing to stand up to her. That makes all the difference to the Chinese people.
While popular opinion in China tends to favor Trump, the Chinese government has been much more critical; however, the state government seems to appreciate Trump’s willingness to stress economic issues over China’s human rights abuses and non-democratic political regime. China propaganda specialists also enjoy using Trump as an example for the failure of democracy.
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