CW: This article contains discussion about sexual assault and abuse.
Chinese-Canadian pop star Kris Wu has been arrested in China after being accused of raping multiple women by Du Meizhu. This is after at least one person has been arrested for impersonating a Du to, successfully con the celebrity , though according to AsiaOne there have been multiple attempts.
Police have said that Du and Wu had sex and then the singer gave Du 32,000 RMB (a little under 5000 USD) to go online shopping. The police allege that Du and a friend, Liu Mowen (刘某文), conspired to use the assault story to gain more fame online. Though this is only initial reporting (the full report from the Chaoyang, Bejing Safety account on Weibo), details may immerge as the trial begins.
The police also state that Wu is still under investigation for his “repeated tricking and deceiving of young women into sexual relationships.” This is probably not a good sign for Wu as Chinese courts have a 99.9% conviction rate. Hopefully this will be a fair trial, but with the history of abuses within the legal system in China it’s hard to know. Another important question that will come out of all this is whether the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) will begin to take the #MeToo Movement in China more seriously.
The CCP has a long history of shutting down dissent that it views as a challenge to their power. This of course includes the #MeToo Movement, just ask the Feminist 5, among a multitude of others. China has failed its female populations in many ways, just as number of other nations have. They have been slow to change with the times. This arrest may signal a change in this course, for women in China I certainly hope this is the case.
It also appears that xenophobia is being used by many in China against Kris, saying that he isn’t Chinese or should go back to his home. While it’s certainly not for me to litigate the heritage or national origin of anyone, many times these issues arise around diasporic groups. Again not my place or the purpose of this article to litigate, however it whenever in and out groups are created it is much easier to vilify people and view them as less than (though to be frank if he did commit these crimes I would certainly sympathize with those who would wish to do just that). However, it is important that justice is fair and meted our evenly, again not something that always happens in China (or a host of other countries that include my home country of America and we need desperate to fix these issues.)
We of course must also fight to end the abuse of women and take claims like this very seriously to ensure that victims receive justice and culprits are rehabilitated and do not perpetrate these horrible acts again. We also need to make sure that we educate people in order to prevent these horrible acts from ever happening, this is especially true for the education of young men on female autonomy, consent, etc. We must do better for our fellow humans. We must help survivors of sexual violence to speak out against their attackers, give them the support systems and resources necessary for them to heal, and strive to create a society in which all people are safe.