After I read an online story today about the Chinese Olympic organizer’s decision to have a young girl lip-sync a song because the other girl was not cute enough it reminded me of a dysfunctional phrase I used to hear a lot when I was growing up, “Children should be seen, not heard.” In this case though, it was the other way around – “a child should be heard, but not seen.”
In this story, it was confirmed that nine-year-old Lin Miaoke, who performed “Ode to the Motherland” as China’s flag was paraded into Beijing’s National Stadium last week during the opening ceremony, was not singing at all. Turns out, she was lip-syncing to the sound of another girl, seven-year-old Yang Peiyi, who was heard but not seen, apparently because she was deemed not cute enough.
“The reason was for the national interest,” said Chen Qigang, the ceremony’s musical director, in a state radio interview. “The child on camera should be flawless in image, internal feeling and expression. Lin Miaoke is excellent in those aspects.”
This is just sad. National interest based on one child being cute and another one not cute enough to appear on camera. The child on camera should be flawless in image, internal feeling and expression. How they can say something like that? To Yang Peiyi’s parents she is the most beautiful child in the world and for organizers to come up publicly and say that she is not cute enough is simply cruel and outrageous.
Yes, let the outrage begin.