Yesterday a video was uploaded online showing multiple passersby rush to aid a pregnant woman who collapsed in Luxun Park in Shanghai on Sunday. Around a dozen people gathered to carry the woman to the park entrance and hailed her a car. When the cameraman asked one of the good Samaritans for his name, the man simply said “I am Shanghainese” (我是上海人).
The video has struck a cord with Shanghai microbloggers, and obviously compassion is a poignant issue following the tragic death of Yueyue last week, the two-year-old left to die after a hit and run. But the Shanghairen comment is quite interesting. There is a very popular sentiment among Shanghainese that they are more civilized than other Chinese cities. As one commenter says:
The level of civilization in a city is directly proportional to the quality of its local residents.
This is in stark contrast to the widely-held opinion around China that Shanghai people are all all cold-hearted money-grubbers. But Shanghai Daily reported today that this wasn’t the only collective display of compassion in Shanghai this week:
In another good Samaritan incident yesterday, passengers on a crowded No. 85 bus delayed getting to work in order to help a woman who had fainted in the stuffy environment. More than 80 passengers asked the driver to take a detour to get the woman to a hospital, although they knew it would make them late for work.
What do you think? Are the Shanghainese any more or less compassionate than the average Chinese city-dweller? Feel free to share your opinions or experiences in the comments below!