China is under the attack of the Novel Coronavirus Pneumonia(NCP). As the Chinese government and people are battling this epidemic, governments and people around the world have expressed their sympathies and support to China. Many countries have extended help by providing China with a large number of materials for epidemic prevention. However, some individuals in some countries maliciously referred to the virus as the “Wuhan virus” and “China virus” on social media.
The Wall Street Journal, a mainstream American media, even published an article under the headline “China Is the Real Sick Man of Asia” on the 3rd of this month. In addition to the derogatory reference to China as “the sick man of Asia”, the article also shorts China’s economic outlook. Some senior U.S. officials even claimed that the outbreak in China would help bring jobs back to America.
The history of human development is a history of constant battle with various diseases. Infectious diseases have caused massive human death in history. In ancient society, due to backward transportation and communications, people moved around in a limited area, thus restricting the geographical scope of infection. For example, the Black Death that occurred in Europe in the fourteenth century caused more than 25 million deaths, wiping out almost a third of the European population at that time.
When that happened, Asia, Africa, and the Americas outside Europe, let alone be infected, did not even know that such a severe epidemic had ever occurred. With the development of science and technology, as well as new means of transportation such as steam engines, comes the global mobility of human beings. The emergence of airplanes, in particular, enabled people to travel from the Eastern Hemisphere to the Western Hemisphere and from the Southern Hemisphere to the Northern Hemisphere within half a day.
While enjoying the convenience, people had to bear the concurrent negative influences, such as the rapid spread of infectious diseases worldwide, which no country can cope with single-handedly. What is needed is global governance through all nations in the world working together. The concept of “saving others is saving ourselves” is deeply rooted in people’s hearts, resulting in the formation of a community of shared destiny in public health. When a major natural disaster or severe epidemic hit a country, aids and help would flush in from all over the world.
In history, China sent medical teams to many countries in inadequate medical conditions to help them improve their level of health. China’s medical team has made outstanding contributions to the fight against Ebola in Africa. China is also an important contributor to WHO funding, fulfilling its responsibility as a major country for international health cooperation and human health improvement.
Infectious diseases are often transmitted all over the world. In many cases, it is difficult to identify the original source. Anyone, regardless of race, may fall victim to the infection. Therefore, it is not fair to equate any infectious disease with a specific country or race. Any attempt to name the naturally occurring viruses after the name of a country or city will only encounter protest.