What do Chinese people misunderstand about America?

  • Americans != White people

almost 30% of Americans are not white. But whenever Chinese (or other Asians) think of ‘American’ they think of a ‘white’ person. You cannot generalize all Americans as this or that, since America is one of the most diverse countries in the world, even more so than China is.

  • Americans do not directly elect the President and they do not elect by popular vote. They elect their President using an archaic system called the United States Electoral College – Wikipedia which is quite different from any other democratic country. The Electoral College can in fact be quite undemocratic in that a minority of people (NOT the majority as in a democracy) can actually elect the President and this has indeed happened in 2016 with Clinton getting more votes but Trump becoming President. Furthermore, the votes for President are cast by electors, not by the people. The people merely decide who the electors *should* vote for, but in many cases like in 2016 the electors don’t actually vote for who they are supposed to vote for. It is more about who wins more states, not who wins more votes. So next time Chinese people want to talk about Trump being a result of the ‘failure of democracy’, it is incorrect because Americans did not directly elect Trump by popular vote, like in other countries.
  • Americans are not as nationalistic as Chinese think. In fact, more than half of Americans disapprove of the job President Trump is doing. How Popular Is Donald Trump? 54% disapprove of the President. Every mainstream news channel (except Fox News) and late night talk show constantly derides and mocks the President. This is in my opinion, one of the major differences between America and China. You will never hear about Chinese state media or a Chinese talk show mocking the President of China, Xi Jinping.
  • Americans are not ‘brainwashed’ by the media. In fact, the vast majority of Americans don’t even believe their own media. ‘Fake News’ Fears: 95% of Americans ‘Troubled’ by Current State of Media, Poll Finds
  • Not all Americans have an unfavorable view of China. Yes the number is higher now than before due to the trade war, but many Chinese believe that all Americans are brainwashed to hate China, and that’s just not true. In fact at one point (2006) the majority of Americans had favorable views of China. It is due to the recent trade war + increasing nationalism and hostility towards America from Chinese people themselves, that has caused this unfavorability to grow

  • Not all Americans own guns. There are a lot of guns in the US, but this is due to a large number of people owning multiple guns. What Percentage of Americans Own Guns? 30% of American adults own a gun. This is not a small number – but it also means 70% of American adults do not own a gun.
  • America != Western countries. Chinese people like to use America as a proxy for ALL Western countries, but it’s not true. All the above I just mentioned makes America quite different from Europe, or Canada, or Australia. I really dislike it when as a Canadian, our country gets grouped together with America as the same type of country, what a broad label and brush to apply to millions of people.

I just want to clear these things up. I see many Chinese people on Quora (obviously either overseas or using VPNs since Quora is not accessible in China) claiming that ‘Americans are like ___’ ‘America is ___’ American news is biased and brainwashes Americans to hate China etc. You cannot generalize Americans as this or that.

Yes there are a lot of questions on Quora that are basically trolling Chinese people or insulting China. You know what you should do? Ignore those trolls and move on. Don’t be a hypocrite and start insulting or generalizing Americans/America back. America is a very diverse country, that particularly prides itself on individualism, which means that everyone is going to be very different from one another and have very different opinions from one another. I don’t think its fair to take some online trolls as an example and extend it ALL Americans + ALL Westerners. That’s over a billion people on 3 continents (Australia is considered a Western country and is its own continent). That’s just ridiculous.


What do you think of Chinese people?

Things I like about Chinese people:




-Willing to take risks

-Brutal honesty

Things I don’t like about Chinese people:

-Too nationalistic, they like to brag about China and how its better than other countries a lot, their cities, their food, their women etc I wish they had more humility

-Ironically even though they criticize other countries like USA/Japan/Korea etc all the time they cannot seem to take criticism of their own country well. They share this in common with Americans. Dude, just accept that the CCP makes some mistakes and that China isn’t perfect. Don’t jump down by throat for giving some honest feedback/criticism about your country. And they will inevitably talk about you are ‘brainwashed’ by Western media even though you are being the open minded one here.

-Face culture. Hate it. Created a generation of materialistic snobs.

-Gender inequality. I hate the BS ‘women hold up half the sky’ talk. If they hold up half the sky shouldn’t they pay for half of everything too? I don’t get why in the country with the lowest gender wage gap, the men still gotta pay for everything. Everything should either be equal and fair to both sexes, or if they insist men pay for everything, then they should do more than men at home or something. Otherwise its not equal.


Tardiness and Unreliability

One of the things I pride on myself most is that I’m reliable. You ask me to do something, I’ll do it, and I’ll do it on time. You ask me to be somewhere at this time? I’ll be at that place at that time. It’s almost a common sense thing, that I wonder why most people can’t adhere to it. Why are most people unreliable? You ask them to get something done, they forget about it. You ask people to be on time, and they’re either late or can’t make it last minute. It annoys the hell out of me, since I’m always so punctual. I’ve rarely been late for anything, and the times I were late were not my fault (the buses were tardy, not me).

Like yesterday, I planned to meet up with my organization. They’re the ones who planned it, and said be at XXX street at 6:30. I was on time, everyone else was late by 30 minutes. That’s inexcusable, how can they ALL be late by that much? I had to stand there in the cold waiting for them? Its gotten to the point where I will purposely add 20-30 minutes to all my schedules because I KNOW that they will be late by that much. Geez. You said you will be there at a certain time, then be there. And the excuse that blah blah happened isn’t an excuse. I always plan for my contingencies, so I give myself extra time. People should plan for unexpected events, and plan accordingly. Thats why I aim to be exactly on time, because I approximate my travel times well.

There are other common sense things that are more to deal with courtesy than anything. When someone texts me, or messages me on MSN, I respond right away, I don’t wait 30 min and then answer just to be ‘fashionable’. I don’t get that, if your status is available, you should be able to answer right away. Some people never answer at all, and just ignore you. That’s just rude. If you’re at a computer, even when you’re busy, are you so busy that you can’t take a second to look at the flashing message window and type something like ‘I’m busy right now’? Even that is better than ignoring me. I find ignoring people the rudest thing, just be honest.

It kind of ties in with being reliable, I’ve always just been reliable, there to help people, and honest about things.
But there are a lot of things in this world I still don’t understand. Why do girls like to sign into MSN and appear offline? If they don’t want people to message them, just don’t sign in, else they should just appear online, be honest about your status. On Facebook, why do girls like to set their relationship status to “married” with another girl? That’s just confusing. Why do so many people post a bunch of pictures of their food and like none of themselves? Why are people so obsessed with sports? Why do people post so much about their dog or cat or pet (more than themselves)? Why do people think baby pictures of themselves are cute? You know, just give me a picture of you over your baby picture any day. I might think you’re sexy or good looking, but would I ever find your baby picture sexy or good looking? No. And Why are people so tardy and unreliable?

Yeah thats all my ranting for now, just got some pet peeves out of the way :D.