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抗议玉林狗食节凸显西方“宠狗”文化
Fierce backlash against Yulin dog festival underscores Westerners’ dog obsessed culture

中国南方玉林为庆祝夏至日到来而举办玉林狗食节。狗食节中因1万至1.5万只狗遭屠杀而引发全球热议,并使中国食狗文化置于全球聚光灯下。随着玉林狗食节在社交媒体上激起一片愤慨,已有数百万西方人士签名请愿要求中国取消玉林狗食节。

Yulin dog meat festival which has seen 10,000 to 15,000 dogs slaughtered in celebration of the Summer Solstice in Southern China has drawn heated controversy across the world, putting the Chinese culture of dog eating under global scrutiny. The festival sparks outrage on social media, with millions of Westerners signing petitions to stop the festival. 

在西方人眼里,狗是人类最好的朋友,屠宰和食用狗肉是异常残忍的行为。但对于玉林当地居民和许多中国人来说,食用狗肉是流传数千年的中国传统文化习俗。

To Westerners who believe dogs are man’s best friend, slaughtering and eating dogs symbolize cruelty. But for local residents and many Chinese people, dining on dogs is a tradition and culture that has been carried on for over thousands of years.

虽然以高度忠诚而顺服著称的狗深受西方人喜爱,但一些中国人却对狗的这些天性嗤之以鼻甚至产生恨意。在汉语里,“狗奴才”一词常常被用于贬损那些附炎趋势、巴结权贵的小人。而在中国的某些地区,狗更是被视为会攻击人类的凶残动物。

While Westerners love dogs for their loyalty and obedience, these same traits only elicit hatred and contempt from Chinese people. In Chinese terms, ‘dog slaves’ are frequently used as derogatory remarks to refer to those who suck up to the powerful and the elite. In certain parts of China, dogs are believed to be vicious animals that attack human beings.

在中国的美味佳肴中,狗肉也一直占据着一席之地。由于在中国流传着食用狗肉可以增加热量的说法,许多人都将狗肉视为冬季御寒的佳肴。而在夏至这一天,食用狗肉也被认为可以带来好运和健康。

Dog meat also serves as a delicious Chinese delicacy. According to Chinese lore, eating dog meat stimulates internal heat, making it a food that wards off the winters’ cold. But on this inaugural day of summer, the meat is also believed to bring good luck and health.

 

拒不屈服的狗食节主办者和支持者认为西方人借狗发挥的帝国道德行为毫无根据、且虚伪做作。如果食用狗肉被西方人士视为残忍恶行,那北美人每年屠宰和食用的数千万只牛、鸡和猪又作何解释?西方人士对狗食节的愤怒只是反映出他们视狗为尊偏见,和对其他动物冷漠。但这只是一己之见,并非事实。

Defiant organizers and supporters believe that the Westerners’ moral imperialism on dogs is unjustified and hypocritical.  If eating dogs are cruel and evil to Westerners, what about the tens of millions of cows, chickens and pigs slaughtered and eaten by North Americans every year? Their outrage against the festival is just a mere reflection of their biased preferences toward dogs and insensitivity towards other animals– they consider dogs cute and friendly animals.

正因为如此,狗食节没有理由激起西方人士的强烈愤慨和严重不满,由此引发的争议最多也只是凸显出中西方的狗文化差异。

As such, the event does not warrant the outraged emotions and fierce backlash from Westerners. At most, the controversy stemmed from the event has only highlighted different cultural attitudes between Western and Chinese people towards dogs.

我对中西方的狗文化之不同有深刻的切身体会。我那体重达到80磅,每天都必须外出散步的宠物狗Fluffy也是这种文化差异的活见证。在多元文化盛行的多伦多市,Fluffy常常很不受人待见。许多少数族裔居民,尤其是来自中国的新移民对她望而生畏, 有时候一些人甚至会流露出对她的仇恨和厌恶。我常常听到邻居抱怨称Fluffy一度吓到他们的孩子,还有一名华裔男子甚至要求我在上下学高峰时段将Fluffy锁起来,以保障其孩子的安全。

I’ve seen first hand the differences of cultural attitudes towards dogs from Chinese and Westerners. My 80-pound dog Fluffy, who follows a stringent daily walk routine, is a living testament of this different cultural attitude. In a multicultural city Toronto, she is often quite unwelcomed and sometimes perceived as intimidating to a lot of minority residents, mostly newcomers from China, who sometimes express hatred and distaste towards her. I frequently receive complaints from neighbours of how Fluffy is intimidating to their children and at one point, a Chinese man even demands me to lock Fluffy up during school rush hours – for the safety of his children.

因为我本人就是在亚洲文化中长大,因此对这种态度很是理解,对他们的排斥心理也习以为常。但在当地大多数加国本土居民眼里,Fluffy是一条非常讨人喜欢的狗,他们会友好地和她打招呼,将她视为可爱的宠物狗。而在两年前发生的一起事件,更是让我震惊而深切体会到中西方狗文化差异。

Growing up in Asian culture myself, I can see where the attitude is coming from and felt at ease at their rejections. But to most local Canadians, Fluffy is a very well liked dog. They greeted her amicably and treated her as an adorable pet.  And an incident two years ago led me feeling deeply shocked by this different attitude.  

在一个寒冬清晨的早高峰时段,Fluffy突然挣脱我手中的颈带,径直冲过一条车辆川流不息的街道。她突如其来的举动导致一辆黑色货车及其后面的车辆紧急停车,造成暂时性交通堵塞。作为Fluffy的主人,我原本预期会听到来自一位亚裔司机的叫喊、指责乃至痛骂,但结果却只见一位泪流满面的白人女士忙不迭地向我道歉。她为差点撞到Fluffy不停地表示歉意,并坚持要陪我一起带Fluffy立即去看兽医。在我向她保证Fluffy没有受伤后,她似乎得到稍许安慰,但在她不情愿地离开时还是给我留了一张名片以备急需。

During a morning rush hour on a cold morning, Fluffy suddenly ran off my leash and dashed across a busy street. Her unpredictable action caused the abrupt stop of a black van and vehicles behind, causing a temporary traffic jam. As Fluffy’s owner, I expected yelling, blames or even scolding from an Asian driver, only to hear apologies from a white woman with tears streaming down her face. She kept apologizing for almost hitting Fluffy and insisted to accompanying me to see a vet immediately. My assurance that Fluffy wasn’t hurt seemed to give her some comfort, and as she reluctantly walked away, she left me a card for emergencies.

此次事件让我感到难以置信,在我看来为一条安然无恙的狗伤心落泪显然是反应过激。同样,我认为对玉林狗食节的强烈不满和抗议也是凸显西方“尊狗”文化的过激反应。而我的亲身经历和玉林狗食节则给我们提供了探索中西方狗文化差异的第一手机会。

The incident has left me shaking my head in disbelief, and I think shedding tears for an unharmed dog was definitely an overreaction. And I also believe that the backlash and fierce protests against Yulin dog festival is also an overreaction that underscores this Westerners’ dog obsessed culture. My experience and Yulin dog festival serve as a best opportunity to explore our cultural difference toward dogs.

 

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