The Onion has finally done it. I am pretty sure that this was the plan of the Onion and all of its content for the last decade. Last week the Onion released a piece, in classic Oniony fashion, naming North Korean supervillian/supreme leader/newlywed Kim Jong Un the sexiest man alive.
Most Onion readers didn’t think much more about it than when they reported on the tragic car accident that sadly, did not kill Glenn Beck. But the People’s Daily, China’s state run, communist mouthpiece reported, very seriously, that Kim Jon Un was in fact named the sexiest man alive.
People’s Republic of China- 0
But what is even weirder about the whole situation is that they ran a 55-page slideshow of Kim Jong Un in all of his boyish, Hitler-haircut glory. I would love to link you to that sideshow (I perused through it yesterday…very serious captions throughout) but the Chinese Government has taken it down.
However hilarious this whole debacle might be, it does reveal two things about the Chinese government that are somewhat disconcerting.
Second, it reveals (once again) that China cannot take a joke. We all make mistakes. Heck, one time in Junior High, I thought some girl was writing me love letters, turns out it was my buddies playing a joke on me! We have all been in China’s shoes. But to pull the story and then refuse to talk to anybody about it, that’s just being uptight. And I assume that this lack of flexibility doesn’t just concern their press tactics.
This pride can be deadly, on an organizational level or an individual level. I will give them a pass for thinking that the Onion is a legitimate publication, and that they found Kim Jong Un sexy (I’m not here to judge what you’re in to, China), but to pull the story and refuse to comment on it shows a misguided sense of infallibility. This collective sinful nature that exists within the Chinese government is possibly a clue to the heart of why they oppress their people and operate in secrecy. With the recent underground revivals in China, maybe the social fabric can change. You could even imagine an underground church having a knowing Proverbs 11.2 laugh over this one. Because we’ve all been there.