TAIPEI (Taiwan News) -- As protests against a controversial extradition bill and calls for Hong Kong head Carrie Lam (林鄭月娥) to quit her post, a meme has resurfaced on social media comparing Lam's relationship to Chinese President Xi Jinping (習近平) to that of Piglet and Winnie-the-Pooh.
The comparison was originally made by Leung Pak-kin, a well-known Hong Kong lyricist on his Facebook page after Xi and Lam were photographed together at the opening of the Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macau Bridge on Oct. 23, 2018. The rotund Xi has already been compared to the chubby little cubby all stuffed with fluff for several years now, while Lam was likened to Piglet because of the flesh pink outfit she was sporting and the fact that Piglet is Pooh's best friend in Hundred Acre Wood.
Displaying images that compare Pooh to Xi is an act of defiance for people in Hong Kong, as all images and even films about the cuddly bear are strictly banned in China. Hong Kong citizens are calling for Lam to step down after she has continued to ignore calls to completely withdraw an extradition bill that would send criminal suspects in Hong Kong to China and for the brutal, violent crackdown by Hong Kong police against some 2 million protestors on her watch.
On Tuesday (June 18), Lam offered a personal apology to Hongkongers for her bungling of the controversial extradition bill, expressing her sadness about the injuries that occurred during protests against the legislation. However, because she refused to step down and she left the door open for the bill to be put up for consideration later this year or next, Hong Kong citizens are continuing to stage protests and memes such as this are being shared across social media.
With the rampant spread of the African swine fever virus across China and the communist government's unsuccessful attempts to cover up news of the outbreak and its devastating effect on the pork industry, the meme has taken another sarcastic meaning.
The light-hearted comparison between Xi and Pooh reportedly first surfaced in 2013 when Obama met with the Chinese leader, and netizens compared the former to Pooh's lanky friend Tigger. A similar comparison was made with Xi as Pooh and Japan's Prime Minister Shinzo Abe as Eeyore, the sad donkey.
Chinese netizens jokingly compared Xi and Obama to Pooh and Tigger in 2013. (Weibo image)
Chinese netizens compared Japan's Abe and China's Xi to Eeyore and Pooh. (Weibo image)
After the Lam-Xi meme became popular, netizens also compared Macau Chief Executive Fernando Chui to Eeyore, and put the three together:
Lam, Xi, and Chui likened to Piglet, Pooh, and Eeyore. (Facebook meme)