Illegal dog names

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This odd headline caught my eye:

"Man in China detained after giving dogs 'illegal' names," by Travis Fedschun | Fox News (5/15/19)

And what were the offending names?  Not what you might have thought:

Chéngguǎn 城管 ("Urban Management")

Xiéguǎn 协管 ("Assistant Management")

Zhangzhou Police said on Chinese social media site Weibo that the names were "insulting law enforcement personnel".

Authorities added that "in accordance with the relevant provisions of the Law of the People's Republic of China on Public Security Administration Punishment," the man must spend 10 days in an administrative detention center.

A police officer told the newspaper Beijing News that Ban had been increasingly provocative on his WeChat account, and his actions had "caused great harm to the nation and the city's urban management, in terms of their feelings," according to the BBC.

That is to say, by naming his dogs "Chengguan" and "Xieguan", Ban hurt the feelings of these public security officials who are roundly detested for their brutality and thuggish behavior (especially the former; the latter tend to be more innocuous, functioning as traffic warden assistants, etc.).  "Hurting the feelings" of the Chinese people is the same rhetoric used by the CCP to denounce foreigners who say or do things that are perceived to be critical or disrespectful of the PRC.

Hats off to Mr. Ban for a clever dig at two of the most despised representative forces of the government, but he'll be lucky to get out of "detention" after ten days.  People have disappeared and died in the Chinese penal system for lesser offenses.

Readings

"Proliferating police " (6/28/18)

"Special diligence: police and security forces in China " (4/14/18)

"'Suffered We Protect They'" (12/22/14)

"Pinyin in practice" (10/13/11)

"More anti-Japanese slogans, but with a twist" (9/21/12)

"'Hurt(s) the feelings of the Chinese people' " (9/21/11)



5 Comments »

  1. Kristian said,

    May 16, 2019 @ 8:28 am

    I gather from this news that dogs are very looked down upon in China. In the West naming a dog after someone or something wouldn't usually be an insult, unless you were somehow suggesting, for example, that the dog actually looks like that person.

  2. Bathrobe said,

    May 16, 2019 @ 10:01 am

    I hate to think what would have happened if he called one of his dogs "Xi Jinping".

  3. Philip Taylor said,

    May 16, 2019 @ 11:22 am

    Unintentional ambiguity. I initially parsed "the former" in "these public security officials who are roundly detested for their brutality and thuggish behavior (especially the former; the latter tend to be more innocuous, functioning as traffic warden assistants, etc.)" as referring to their brutality (as opposed to their thuggish behaviour". It took several re-parses before I finally realised that "the former" referred a lot further back, presumably (but not incontravertibly) to "Chengguan" as opposed to "Xieguan".

    As regards worrying for Mr. Ban's safety, I am even more concerned for the safety of his dogs, since it is only to easy to imagine that dogs with names such as "Chengguan" and "Xieguan cannot be permitted to continue to insult law enforcement personnel by remaining alive …

  4. Ralph Hickok said,

    May 16, 2019 @ 5:03 pm

    I guess police dogs are illegal in china.

  5. chris said,

    May 18, 2019 @ 9:42 pm

    People have disappeared and died in the Chinese penal system for lesser offenses.

    I'm having a bit of trouble imagining what exactly would constitute an offense that is lesser compared to dog-naming.

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