DuckDuckGo offers me interesting articles from Medium that I might want to click through to. This helps me discern which publications consistently put forth cultural sermonising disguised as intellectual discussions. This is useful, because cleverly crafted titles from The Atlantic keep coming up short. The few I click to turn out to be "Where's the beef?" articles, even when they are not offensively trying to steer me to understand that their culture, their audience, are really the cool kids who should be elected Homecoming Queen, not like those cheerleaders and cute girls that you morons have been falling for. I swear all of the national media is still playing out their frustrations from high school.
Thus it is fairly predictable that the NYT articles are similarly interesting at first but also similarly lightweight. Almost as predictable as Sam L telling me how irritated he is with them - I can feel his frustration through the interwebs even as I type. One recent article is how Asian-Americans, especially Chinese, are being treated badly by bigoted other Americans during the era of C19. I made a prediction, and it proved true. The number of actual incidents was small, and the sample of those interviewed was clearly steered toward "Please! Someone here! One of you must have experienced some bigoted treatment. Could you please tell us about that? Then we can spend the other 47 paragraphs talking about how this is in danger of happening everywhere, and it's all Donald Trump's fault for using the phrase Wuhan Virus, which we ourselves used four weeks ago but have since erased that and now declare to be unbearably bigoted."
Let me tell you what is actually happening up her in New England. There are no incidents of people making the mildest anti-Asian statements that I have heard. None. There may be some, but I have not heard a whisper. I have heard assurances from liberals at work that it is happening everywhere, but nothing that one would er, care to try and bring into court or a debating society as evidence.
I am sure if one scours the comments sections of conservative sites one can find some vile examples, who may even be real people and not trolls or sock puppets, blaming all Chinese people here in America for trying to infect us with their biological warfare. They never show up answering that way in any poll, but I'm sure they are exactly the Deplorables that Hillary Clinton assured us were 50% of her opposition. They're just disguised. But those who know, like the people at the NYT are sure they are just everywhere.
What is really setting people off is out-of-state license plates. A work crew from NJ that has been here (correction. It was in Maine) for a month doing interior work on a Lakes Region vacation home had someone fell a tree behind them in the driveway so they couldn't get out and infect the town. The police are still working on this. Rhode Island has troopers going door-to-door looking for New Yorkers. Cape Cod is petitioning that the only two bridges be closed. Maine is questioning out-of-state people at the border (more likely at the toll booths). Apparently NH residents are being waved along, but anyone else is being intimidated.
Well, that is ugly. That is unfair prejudice with more than a whiff of violence and people deserve to be punished for that. We have long been guilty of that and I don't excuse it. If people look different, especially racially different, that likely intensifies. But at the moment, if you've got NH plates people will smile and wave whatever race you are, while New York plates might provoke truculent and challenging responses.
Prejudice is the default setting of mankind, but it moves flexibly depending on circumstances.