Public Radio International’s The World reported on February 21st, that two viral videos depicting a verbal altercation between a Hong Kong native and a mother from Mainland China have fueled further animosity between the island and the Mainland.
The controversy began on a subway train when a Hong Kong man witnessed a Mainland Chinese mother permitting her child to eat dried noodles, dropping some on the floor. The man responded in poor Mandarin that eating on the train was not allowed. Other Mainland Chinese passengers then began to mock the man’s influent Mandarin. Upon hearing the remarks, he retorted that the Mainlanders were in Hong Kong and should be speaking Cantonese, the language of Hong Kong. When another Hong Konger came to his defense, the Hong Kong man said, “don’t bother. Mainlanders are just like this”. The argument escalated and the police was forced to get involved.
Footage of the argument was posted online, and quickly became viral. Kong Qingdong, a professor at Peking University, appeared on a Beijing talk show in response to say that Mainland Chinese have no responsibility to speak the Hong Kong dialect, while Hong Kongers have the responsibility to speak Mandarin. He continued to say, “many Hong Kongers think they are not Chinese. Those kinds of people were British running dogs. Now they are just dogs.”
Video of this interview also went viral, only adding to the enormous tension between Hong Kongers and Mainland Chinese.
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