First, to keep this issue in perspective: USA Today reported (back in November 2013) that “Fatal hit-and-run crashes on rise in U.S.”
USA Today said, “Crash data from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration show that the number of fatal hit-and-run crashes (this means someone was killed) is trending upward, from 1,274 in 2009, to 1,393 in 2010, to 1,449 in 2011, the most recent year for which statistics were available.”
Now to China (which usually gets roasted in the US media without any balance or perspective)—ChinaSMACK said a foreigner driving drunk and without a license, hit a 23-year old Yiwu girl crossing a street in a crosswalk.
If you believe the Chinese media is completely controlled and censored, you may be surprised to learn that ChinaSMACK is a daily-updated collection of translated Internet content from the Chinese-language Internet.
ChinaSMACK (launched in 2008) covers stories, pictures, videos, and topics that have become very popular and have spread across China’s major BBS forums, social networking websites, or through forwarded e-mails sent between normal Chinese people every day.
ChinaSMACK attracts millions of visits and page views each month featuring a vibrant community of commenters.
ChinaSMACK did not identify the foreigner (laowai), who was driving drunk without a license. The victim was thrown over 20 meters (more than 65 feet), and she died in the hospital.
The laowai sped away from the scene to avoid being caught, but the Chinese police tracked him down and arrested him. The victim’s family is poor and her father died three years ago.
The first two comments to the ChinaSMACK post said, “If you had hit a person, you too would be arrested and administratively detained first and then what should be done will be done. Laowai cannot escape Chinese legal punishment.”
“Our country’s criminal law does not put foreigners outside of our country’s criminal law. As long as the foreigner does something that matches a crime in our country’s criminal law, then the foreigner cannot escape the criminal laws punishment.”
This news clip talks about drunk driving and hit-and-run accidents in China
The next story is about the killing of a 20-year-old college girl in another hit-and-run. When confronted, it was reported that the drunk driver (Li Qiming) yelled, “My father is Li Gang!” Li Gang was a high-ranking police officer and a member of the Communist Party. The victim was the daughter of a 49-year-old peasant from rural China.
The father of the victim said in an interview, “I’m just a peasant. If it is unfair, let it be.”
However, an angry Chinese public on the Internet overruled the victim’s father and refused to “let it be.” Although there have been many hit-and-run accidents in Hubei province, there was anger at China’s powerful elite and the arrogance of some children of money and power.
If you want to learn more about the rich, powerful and famous escaping punishment for horrible crimes, read Celebrity Justice: Prison Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous.
Matt Clarke writes: “There are two criminal justice systems in the United States. One is for people with wealth, fame or influence who can afford to hire top-notch attorneys and public relations firms, who make campaign contributions to sheriffs, legislators and other elected officials, and who enjoy certain privileges due to their celebrity status or the size of their bank accounts. The other justice system is for everybody else.”
And then ask: Is there a difference between China and America when it comes to justice for the rich and famous?
You be the judge: In January 2011, Li Qiming was arrested for the hit and run and sentenced to six years in jail and ordered to pay the equivalent of $69,900 in compensation to the family of Chen Xiaofeng. Li was also ordered to pay $13,800 to the injured woman.
Lloyd Lofthouse is the award-winning author of My Splendid Concubine [3rd edition]. When you love a Chinese woman, you marry her family and culture too. This is the love story Sir Robert Hart did not want the world to discover.
His latest novel is the multiple-award winning Running with the Enemy.
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