OPINION / OBSERVER
Extreme double standards over China reflect irreversible decline of the West
Published: Feb 07, 2021 10:32 PM

A man wearing a face mask walks along the Tower Bridge in London, Britain, on January 5. Photo: Xinhua

Two COVID-19-related articles recently published by Western and Chinese media outlets have discussed what human rights are from different perspectives. 

Unsurprisingly, the Western outlet has adhered to its traditional double-standard narratives. But this rhetoric has actually come to a dead end as such tricks can no longer fool people from developing countries. 

The Economist magazine published on January 16 an article entitled "Many in China are strikingly accepting of harsh virus controls." The writer continued stigmatizing China over human rights issues, even though the West is engaging in a dilemma of being unfair on COVID-19 vaccine allocation. 

On Thursday, CGTN, a Chinese media, released an article written by Maitreya Bhakal, an Indian commentator, with the title "Many Americans are strikingly tolerant of massive COVID-19 casualties." Bhakal said in the article, "Americans are proud of their freedoms... If only more of them had the freedom to survive a pandemic."

Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Hua Chunying said on January 6, "The most basic human right is the right to life, and that means the right and freedom to stay healthy and safe amid the pandemic." But the West has always denied this, and the reason is very simple. The West has sacrificed hundreds of thousands of innocent lives during its so-called defense of human rights amid the pandemic. 

A year has passed since the initial outbreak of the deadly coronavirus. But the West is still stuck in a humanitarian catastrophe due to its ineptitude in dealing with the virus. Meanwhile, Western media outlets are still trying to use double-standard tricks to cover the serious violation of human rights in the West. This is pathetic. 

What are human rights? The West has indulged too much in its double-standard rhetoric to know the essence. 

In the view of Western media, even though people are dying due to COVID-19, and vaccine allocation is in a mess, as long as the West emphasizes the so-called freedom - the core of West-upheld human rights - it can secure the moral high ground. Hence, they attempt to convince people anything that infringes the West-endorsed human rights is evil and harmful to people. 

This goes in line with what the Western governments have been injecting into their people's minds. Many Westerners are "proud of the freedom to believe whatever they want," Bhakal wrote. This is precisely what Western politicians and media want. "They talk in ways like they were true believers in human rights, but their actions make a travesty and mockery of human rights," Hua noted.

The West adopts double standards almost everywhere, in a bid to enhance their "exceptionalism" and maintain their dominant position in the world. Western governments are benefiting from such moves domestically, which help keep their people "in check and distract them from domestic problems," just as the CGTN article said. 

Such an approach is like shooting oneself in the foot. Deeply engaged in it, the West has no way to really protect human rights as it flaunts. But for the political purpose of attacking non-Western countries, especially China, the West intensified its efforts to push the double-standard approach to extremes. 

However, the pandemic is a mirror, revealing the ugliest side of the West. The West's double standards over China-related issues originate from its lack of confidence in the face of China's peaceful rise. And such insecurity comes out of the decline of the West, which will never be reversed as along as the West goes farther with its double-standard actions.

The US-led Western world fears that China will take over their leadership globally but are reluctant to figure out a way to compete in a benign way. By contrast, they resort to filthy means to slander and suppress China. However, the louder their double-standard rhetoric, the more clearly the decline of the West will be seen. 


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