Mother slams use of daughter's photo for Japan boast on July 7 Incident anniversary
Published: Jul 09, 2021 12:27 AM
The 84th anniversary of July 7 Incident Photo: cnsphotos

The 84th anniversary of July 7 Incident Photo: cnsphotos

A Chinese mother on Thursday rebuked the unscrupulous behavior of some social media accounts stealing her daughter's photos to make up stories boasting about Japan on Wednesday, the 84th anniversary of July 7 Incident, an unforgettable event to the Chinese people as it marked the start of Japan's full-scale invasion of China, and China's whole-nation resistance against the Japanese invaders.

"I'm contacting a lawyer to prosecute the rumormongers," the irritated mother, surnamed Xia, told the Global Times on Thursday evening.

Xia happened to see a screenshot of an article on news aggregator app Jinri Toutiao on Thursday morning, which showed a photo of her two-a-half-year-old daughter Xixi standing on the subway train, and a dozen lines of texts.

To Xia's surprise and anger, the article described Xixi as a Japanese girl, and even made up a story to advertise the "kindness" of Japanese people.

Take a look at this cute little girl in Kobe, Japan, the article said. "The girl bravely stands alone on the train, although there are some empty seats near her," it said.

The article then introduced a "tradition" in Japan, "Japanese parents and teachers educate kids to stand when taking public transportation, leaving the seat for the hard-working adult passengers [who potentially need to sit and rest]."

Xia said she was very upset seeing this obviously fictitious story. "I felt as if my child's reputation was soiled," she told the Global Times. "Xixi and I were born and grew up in China. We've never ever been to Japan. We are 100 percent Chinese!"

Xixi's photos were taken in the subway in Hangzhou, East China's Zhejiang Province, Xia said. "I took the photos when we commuted between kindergarten and home," she added.

Along with Xixi's photos, this fake story was widely spread on Chinese social media on Wednesday. On Weibo, many accounts kept posting and forwarding the story, accompanied by a few words praising Japan and its people, such as "Japan is the safest and most civilized country," the Global Times reporter found.

Xia clarified the rumor on Weibo on Thursday afternoon, posting several photos of Xixi wearing traditional Chinese costumes, including hanfu and qipao.

Xixi, wearing a traditional Chinese costume <em>hanfu</em>, stands in the subway of Hangzhou, East China's Zhejiang Province. Photo: Courtesy of Xixi's mother Xia

Xixi, wearing a traditional Chinese costume hanfu, stands in the subway of Hangzhou, East China's Zhejiang Province. Photo: Courtesy of Xixi's mother Xia

"I hereby declare that my daughter is Chinese, not Japanese. She deeply loves our motherland," she posted, asking the rumormongers to "shut up."

Xia's post, forwarded 6,000 times within hours on the same day, attracted wide attention among Weibo users. Numerous users commented under the post, criticizing the rumormongers' "evildoing" of bragging about Japan around July 7. On this day 84 years ago, the imperial Japanese army launched an assault on the Lugou Bridge in Beijing as a pretext for the overall invasion of China.

"How could they steal a Chinese girl's photo and make up a story to brainlessly praise Japan on such a special day?" one user wrote, criticizing them as traitors.

Some users doubted that there were extreme Japan worshippers or even anti-China forces behind the rumormongers. "I'm afraid there are enemies behind the curtain, ordering these people to constantly glorify Japan around this day (July 7), indirectly whitewashing Japan's previous atrocities of invading China."