A Telegraph writer has been widely mocked and accused of xenophobia after tweeting from her Chinese-made iPhone that once the Covid-19 crisis is over, owning any products ‘Made in China’ should be seen as “a badge of shame.”
Columnist Allison Pearson tweeted the incendiary remarks on Monday night, just hours after British PM Boris Johnson ordered a three-week nationwide lockdown of the UK in an attempt to counter the spread of the deadly coronavirus.
The irony of Pearson’s seemingly anti-Chinese sentiments was – unfortunately for her – not lost on many Twitter users, who highlighted the fact she had made these comments using an Apple product almost certainly manufactured in China.
When she realises her iPhone is made in China 🙄 #racist pic.twitter.com/k51aENMeEJ— jeds0808 (@jeds0808) March 24, 2020
The 59-year-old British journalist was accused of stupidity as well as xenophobia and racism, with some pointing to the huge 5G deal Johnson has struck with Chinese telecommunications firm Huawei, in addition to the deal sealed for the nuclear plant at Hinkley Point C in Somerset.
Straight up xenophobia, not helpful, nor intended to be so…. pic.twitter.com/fsYC3Cl7pR— Monsignor it’s all Corbyn’s fault. (@ItCorbyn) March 23, 2020
Is it possible to be more stupid than Allison Pearson?Boris Johnson has a huge deal with China for the nuclear plant at Hinckley point and has just signed up for 5G Huawei. https://t.co/GySjQlVoKY— Angie 🕷️🇪🇺🇬🇧🇫🇷🐟 (@Angieeclectic) March 24, 2020
Others suggested Pearson’s rhetoric showed a disregard for the many Chinese workers who were helping to prop up the UK healthcare system, struggling to deal with the effects of the coronavirus outbreak.
One person fumed: “How f**king dare she, lots of Chinese doctors/nurses are working themselves into the ground saving lives in our #NHS what a vile, heinous individual.” Consultant acute physician Dr Phillip Lee – who originates from China – asked Pearson: “Should I be ashamed working for the NHS?”
During his address to the British public on Monday, the prime minister demanded that the populace stay at home or risk getting arrested. “If you don’t follow the rules, the police will have the powers to enforce,” Johnson warned.
This means no direct contact with friends or family members who do not live in the same home, and only leaving the house to shop for food “as infrequently as possible,” to get “one form of exercise” a day, to obtain medical care, or to commute to and from work if absolutely necessary.
8,077 UK patients have tested positive for Covid-19, while there have been 422 deaths – an increase of 87 in just 24 hours.
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