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社交媒体激发华裔人士民主大选激情
Social media has fueled Chinese people’s desire to vote in a democratic election

上周三早晨,美国民主选出了下一任总统 - 特朗普。虽然这场竞争激烈的美国总统大选以选民投票率最低而结束,但它似乎激发全世界华人对政治前所未有的热情,并让亚裔美国人冲到了政治浪口的前沿。显然,社交媒体起到了推波助澜的作用。

On Wednesday morning, Donald Trump has won the US presidency through a democratic election. While this highly contentious election has the lowest voter turnout rate among American public, it seems to have inspired Chinese people’s unprecedented political enthusiasm and pushed Asian Americans into the front wave of politics. It was the social media that has played a key role in this transformation.

特朗普的漫长、充满火药味和喜剧性地走进白宫让全世界看了一场让全世界都羡慕的民主历程,尤其是那些从来不给自己的公民选举权利的专制国家。由于美国允许世界各地的新闻媒体进行自由报道,此次大选进程从头至尾完全透明,并且以前所未有的方式突显出民主机制所推崇的新闻自由。

Trump’s long, raucous and rambling journey to the Whitehouse has highlighted an election process that has kept the US democracy the envy of the world – especially the authoritarian state that has never given their citizens the opportunity to vote. Allowing free coverage by news media around the world, the election process is entirely transparent and has highlighted the freedom of press in a democratic system in an unprecedented way.

随着两名总统候选人的竞争进入冲刺阶段,希拉里的电邮丑闻争议愈演愈烈,川普亦被爆出性侵前科,同时两名候选人的辩论也被广为播报。选民对候选人的新闻报道反应和意见被媒体紧盯不放,民调公司也及时预测大选的结果。

As contest between the two candidates entered the home stretch, scandals from Clinton’s email controversy to Trump’s sexual assault allegations were exposed and debates between candidates were broadcasted. Voters’ opinions in response to the news coverage were closely monitored as pollsters brought their latest predications on the election results in a timely fashion.

不夸张地说,这样的大选程序对中国来说简直不可想象。根据南华早报,由于害怕外国的影响,中国当权者一直就控制中国媒体对美国大选的报道。结果,所有中国网站,新闻单位和电视台均被禁止对美国大选进行实况转播,以防止“过分”的报道。

Needless to say, such an election process is unthinkable in China. Fearing foreign influence, the Chinese rulers have started its medial censorship machine to control the information on US democratic contest. As a result, all websites, news outlets and TV networks were not allowed to provide any live coverage on the election and to avoid "excessive" reporting of the story, according to South China Morning Post.

中国政府对媒体的控制反而加大了中国百姓对美国大选的了解欲望,他们转向社交媒体来获取更真实的美国大选信息。新浪微博,中国最大的社交媒体平台实况转播了美国总统候选人辩论的全过程。而中国最受欢迎的社交信息发送运用软件变成了人们查询最新美国民调数据、对候选人品头论足和辩论的平台。

But the government tightening control and media censorship has instead sparked public desire for knowledge and information as many people in China resort to the social media for more reliable information on the election. Sina Weibo, China’s biggest social media platform, lived-streamed the entire presidential debate and WeChat, China most popular social messaging app, has also provided a platform for bringing most updated poll results to its users and engaging discussions and debates about the candidates.

大中报,也就是本报的发行人贾宁扬指出: “微信让那些对西方民主系统和选举过程不感兴趣的,不论他/她是海外的还是国内的中国人士参与了美国大选的进程。贾宁扬自己就用微信这一平台积极地向中国国内的朋友们介绍西方民主系统。

“WeChat has engaged Chinese people – both living in China and overseas -- who lack political enthusiasm about Western democratic system and the election process,” said Jack Jia, the publisher of this paper who has been using the platform to actively promote the Western democratic system to his peers in China.

随着海内外华人对政治的热情高涨,有些中国的百姓还用微信平台做模拟美国大选。他们将总统候选人的视频或截屏发到微信平台,根据自己对候选人的政策和立场的理解,让自己微信账号的追随者来表达他们对候选人的喜好和憎恶。尽管模拟大选有嘲讽美国大选的成分,但它还是显示了中国公民对他们从来就没有得到过的选举权的渴望。

Amid this growing political passion, some people from China even tried to experience the election process by holding a mock campaign on WeChat. They combined video or screenshots of the presidential debate with interpretations of candidates’ policies and positions, allowing followers to express their favoritism and distaste through WeChat posts. Despite some teasing element in this mocking election, it has nonetheless revealed Chinese netizens’ desire for the democratic voting right that they’ve never been entitled to. 

贾宁扬说:“许多华人网民对大选话题不亦乐乎,他们争先恐后地在微信群里对美国总统候选人品头论足,这是过去从未见过的现象。”

“Many people were really thrilled about it, as posts about their opinions towards the candidates have flooded the WeChat room, which was an unprecedented phenomenon,” said Jia.

亚裔美国人通过社交媒体感受到大选的乐趣,并把他们对政治的热情提高到一给新的高度。一个美籍华人在微信上表达了她对投票权,这个自己祖国从来没有给予她的权利的珍视:

Asian Americans have captured this election excitement on social media and take their political fervour to the next level. A Chinese American posted on WeChat expressing how much she values the voting opportunity that she was never given in her home country: 

“我在投票站排了很长时间,一个排在我前面的人抱怨已经排了三个小时。对方问我在自己的祖国要排多长时间才能投上一票,我告诉他,他们已经等了5,000年了,而且他们还在等!”

“There was a long waiting line in my voting station, and a guy in front of me complained about his three hours long wait. But when asked me how long I have to wait to vote in my home country, I told him they have been waiting for five thousand years and are still waiting!”

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