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Chinese kick woman out of PCR test center for wearing kimono

Test center staff and bystanders demand woman changes clothes to undergo COVID test

Woman in kimono is escorted away from testing center. (Douyin screenshot)

Woman in kimono is escorted away from testing center. (Douyin screenshot)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — Chinese staff and bystanders at a COVID testing station were angered by a woman wearing a Japanese-style kimono and demanded that she change her clothes before she could be tested, in a video that caused a commotion on Chinese social media.

Amid an outbreak of the delta variant in China's Fujian Province, the video that surfaced Monday (Aug. 23) shows a Chinese woman arriving at a PCR testing station in Xiamen clad in a light blue kimono. A number of people can be heard angrily shouting at her as she is hurriedly escorted out of the premises by two volunteers flanking her on either side.

One volunteer can be heard calling her "Japanese" in Hokkien, while the man holding the camera repeatedly shouts that she cannot go inside. As she realizes the outrage her outfit has caused, she appears to be exasperated.

At least two volunteers can be heard telling her to change her clothes and come back later. She then makes an OK gesture and swiftly shuffles away from the scene.

Chinese kick woman out of PCR test center for wearing kimono
Text reads: "Come back after you change your clothes." (Douyin screenshots)

Chinese netizens had a mixed reaction to the incident. Given the 76th anniversary of the Japanese surrender is Sept. 2 and Japanese officials visited the Yasukuni Shrine in Tokyo on Aug. 15, Chinese nationalism is at a fever pitch:

"You must wear Chinese clothes if you want to get a Chinese vaccine."

"Go to Japan for testing, since you like it so much."

"We respect your freedom to wear any clothes you like. Please also respect our stubborn emotions toward our national identity."

However, some felt the nationalism went too far:

"What's the problem with wearing a kimono? Why is PCR testing being denied for the slightest reason? Blind nationalism is bad!"

"So this means you have to wear a qipao or hanfu to undergo PCR testing, otherwise you will not be tested?"

"This video was shot with an Apple iPhone, wasn't it? Next time you need to change to Huawei."

Some sharp-eyed netizens noticed the woman was wearing a name tag from a nearby Sushi restaurant and that her kimono was in fact her work uniform. The woman had, apparently, taken a break from her job to undergo testing and did not have the luxury of changing her clothing.

Chinese kick woman out of PCR test center for wearing kimono
Name tag shows she is an employee at a Japanese restaurant. (Douyin screenshot)

Updated : 2021-09-29 04:31 GMT+08:00