I wouldn’t call the article Tom Miller wrote journalism at its worst, but it’s certainly reckless and it’s certainly terrible.
If I talk too much about this I’ll become enraged and lose out on sleep. Also, Beijing Boyce has completely circled the wagon and far out-reported the original author of the article. That said, allow me just two thoughts:
1. If you publish an inflammatory story, you should at least have the decency to not use a headline as ludicrous as “Authorities order bars not to serve black people.” No one would even need to read the article to jump to a website like MediaTakeOut and start tossing out “chink,” “well i stop eat chinese food from now on!!!!!” and “DAMN! I JUST HOPE JAPAN IZ A LOT MORE CIVIL TOWARDS ANY AND ALL BLACK PEOPLE”.
I hope you’re happy with what you’ve incited, Tom Miller and SCMP editors, this in a country that’s been friendlier to African nations than most others.
2. Co-Ed Magazine is a piece of shit, and this is the most moronic thing I’ve ever read. If I ever meet Andrew from Hunter College, I would have a difficult time — so help me somebody — holding back punches.
Also, I know sports blogs like Deadspin and With Leather are just for humor, but do the writers there have to make asses of themselves? I now sort of — and I can’t believe I’m saying this, considering — see why Buzz Bissinger was so mad at them. (Will Leitch, come back to Deadspin, please.)
3. Okay, I’m worked up… might as well throw in another penny…
From Beijing Boyce:
- Most interesting, two people working at one bar had different perspectives on the terminology used by the police. One said the police used “black” in reference to skin color; while the other said it was used in terms of bad elements (the Chinese character for “black” is part of a phrase used to describe criminals).
I believe it takes a 2nd grader’s command of the Chinese language to understand that 黑 can refer to “criminal.”
- Time: “The paper also suggested that ‘not all bars in the [area] had been ordered to refuse black customers,’ contrary to the original claim that all bars had been asked to discriminate against black people.’”
- The Humanaught: “…a number of others have jumped to the call and found no evidence that supports the SCMP article.”
- Granite Studio, via Peking Duck: “YJ checked out the rumor with some people “in the know,” looks like the SCMP pulled this at random off of some BBS. Rumor: BUSTED.”
- Blogging for China: “For this post, I just want to point out an interesting quote Tom Miller managed to extract from an unnamed black British national: ‘Chinese people are prejudiced, but I would have hoped that the government would set a better example as it debuts on the world stage.’” (And a longer post here.)
- Beijing Olympic Games 2008: “This report in the South Morning China Post is probably one of the less researched stories and paints Beijing and China in a particularly bad light.”
- World Affairs Board: “But to believe a report like that, you must be borderline retard or a hater, or both”
- GeoExPat: “Not entirely accurate it seems.”
- Because we have to complete the circle… Beijing Boyce: “Apparently the policy is so secret that the police are keeping it from all but a few bar owners who can be trusted to reveal it to foreign journalists.”