Saturday, April 25, 2009

Say It Ain't So, Jackie!

Jackie Chan made some comments the other day that didn't go over all that well with some Chinese folks. He seems to think the Chinese people need an iron handed government to tell them what to do.
Now I'm not Chinese, but one of the things that I have noticed here is that day to day living goes on in pretty much an honest, non violent manner. There is theft, but no more than in an American city. Violence is a lot lower, possibly due to the fact that there are no guns. Traffic laws are ignored here, except most people stop at red lights, but you don't see many accidents. The police are kind of low key here, spending most of their time confiscating unlicensed motorcycles.
I was talking to a friend the other day about how it was kind of impressive how a city of 7 million got along as well as it did without a lot of police intervention. It may be chaotic, but there is also a level of civility that might not be present in other cities in the world. Maybe the unspoken threat of government intervention keeps people in line here, but I think there is a deeply ingrained cultural sense of basic right and wrong that keeps 1.3 billion people mostly in line.
Jackie Chan is a very entertaining guy. Except when he dips his toes in politics.

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