Beijing is about to launch a crackdown on its toughest enemy yet: dancing aunties.
A new law will take effect next month that could see ladies of a certain age face “administrative punishment” ranging from fines to criminal prosecution for bringing the ruckus and disturbing their neighbors in China’s capital city.
“Individual or group activities should not disturb public order, advocate superstition or affect other people’s work, studies or life,” the updated regulation reads.
In the past, Chinese residents fed up with the blaring, monotonous music that often accompanies the outdoor dance sessions held by older ladies have tried to deal with the problem by giving the dancers headphones, installing sound-directing speakers, locking them out, throwing feces at them, and, when all else failed, just shooting them.
But none of that has worked. The damas have only grown stronger. They’ve even started coordinating their movements on social media.
Even the government has proved helpless. Back in 2015, China introduced a set of 12 standardized dance routines set to the overplayed tune of “Xiaopingguo” in an effort to guide the rebellious aunties “with national standards and regulations.”
This effort was quickly lambasted online and a spokesperson was forced to clarify that the move was done only to “provide scientifically sound alternatives” to current routines. It seemed the dancing aunties had won.
But recently local governments have started pushing back against the scourge with local measures. Last year, a community in Hefei began instituting a real-name registration system for its dancing aunties. Meanwhile, the Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region placed a ban on playing music or using loudspeakers for dancing between 10 p.m. and 6 a.m. in parks located near residential buildings.
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