The following rap song by Taiwanese rapper “Daddy Chang” (脏爸爸) was written as a “Japan prayer song” following the 2011 March 11 Tohoku/Sendai earthquake disaster. It was viewed over 1.2m times within 48 hours of being uploaded onto popular Chinese video-sharing website Youku, while also receiving over 60k upvotes, compared to over 400 downvotes from Chinese netizen viewers:
A copy on YouTube:
“我的邻居” ["My Neighbor"] Lyrics and English Translations:
[Note: Rap lyrics can be very difficult to translate accurately. Please feel free to offer corrections or suggestions in the comments below.]
My neighbors, I am praying for you,
I hope in the future we will no longer compare ourselves over our position in Asia
Right now you are weak, so I will put aside arguing about history for now
though it doesn’t mean I will no longer be against having been attacked
My enemy, I still remember our Wenchuan Earthquake,
at the time you too sent a rescue team to my motherland in support
So I hope this song will bring you some comfort
and in the dark lonely night, give you some light
Chinese are also human, and I’m not afraid of losing this face
Yes, they are our enemy, but I am unable to embody
the attitude of gloating at others’ misfortunes, that is definitely not the Chinese way!
We represent peace, so I have decided to donate
some cash, wrapped in a Muslim letter,
and sent to the [Taiwan] Tzu Chi Foundation
Of course, my donation to Yunnan province was 10x and up!
Because blood is thicker than water, this is principle.
Representing myself, I don’t represent all my brothers [fellow countrymen]
because the historical setback/hurt they have suffered is still very present [in their hearts]!
My attitude, only represents Chinese values of peace!
I am personally resolutely against things like celebrating natural disasters
It is not courage, this is a kind of human morality
Let all my fellow countrymen who disagree come and curse me
But I have the responsibility, to raise mankind’s character!
As a Chinese person, I represent the Chinese in wishing the best for the Japanese!
Because the facts of history has given us scars,
but the lesson of scars does not mean China can lose its mind,
This tsunami, has killed many of our neighbors
and the bodies of many family members for many families are unable to be buried
Just like the tragedy we ourselves have also had in history
Refugees and ruins and the like are all grievances we too have had
but always holding a grudge is not what Confucius taught
I sincerely hope that repaying evil with good has effectiveness in bringing peace
Our neighbors in the past, said that China has no character
I now show you the cultural aims of Chinese people:
Peace to the world, praying that the entire planet will have plenty of food
working towards peaceful development, walking towards proper/just principles and goals
In the past I cursed those who admired Japan as traitors,
But much of their culture, is indeed worth respecting
Like the rare hope and order maintained by the people after the disaster
this is worth us learning from
Not only is Daddy Chang a Taiwanese rapper who raps for mainland China, he is also a Canadian citizen and Muslim. Many of his other videos on his Youku page have had hundreds of thousands to millions of views. ZhongTV, a Chinese music and entertainment service, claims that Daddy Chang’s videos often reach a million views within 48 hours of being uploaded. Daddy Chang also has a YouTube page.
Comments from Youku:
Ding this up, gloating at others’ misfortunes is indeed not a principle/philosophy of us Chinese people. Well said.
With Japan as our neighbor, we must help the disaster victims there. Wish them the best.
Brother Zhang is really speedy, being able to write this new song so quickly…
I am a rural worker who helps others carry manure. In order to express his feelings about this earthquake, I went through a lot of trouble and walked 2 days and 2 nights to this county town and found an internet bar. I spent 20 yuan to find someone who knew how to go online and post comments. Through a lot of effort I express my feelings at this time and moment: 1. I am very excited. That the earthquake has brought harm to Japan, I celebrate! I am expressing the celebration in my heart! 2. To the many ignorant people who think they are experts, I warn you, we are not fenqing. Even though it is said that the 1937 has nothing to do with the Japanese ordinary common people, the government is formed by the ordinary common people. If at the time the ordinary common people insisted on opposing war, we wouldn’t hate you guys as we do now. 3. Japan’s descendants are not human/people, this you guys can go search for, most of them have bad natures. Actually, we don’t need to go save Japan, it is better to let them quietly die from this earthquake, because if we save them now, they will bite us back, and then we will still have to exterminate them. Rather than cruelly destroying Japan then, it would be better to just let them quietly go now, I will pray [for it/them]. 5. We must unite together to resist this inhuman Japan, they haven’t even returned the Diaoyu Islands [aka Senkaku Islands] yet. Fellow countrymen, wake up…how can those who don’t acknowledge history be people/human? Even I as a manure carrying rural laborer wants to properly regard history, but them, even though they are prosperous, they still want to falsify their history books. This kind of people simply aren’t human. Going now to rescue them means that in the future, we will have to fight them again. Rather than suffer years of cruel war, it would be better if we just don’t go rescue them now and quietly let them die…
[Note: This netizen consistently wrote the Chinese word for Japan with a punctuation mark in between the two characters 日本 like this: 日，本 or 日.本. Normally, people only do this because they think it will make their comment or posts harder to match keyword filters. It appears this commenter thinks writing "Japan" will be filtered or monitored.]
Have you thought of why our people would gloat at their misfortune like this? If this kind of disaster happened to any other country, would our country’s people be like this? [No, we would] definitely also be sympathetic, encouraging, and help, definitely also wish for the best. But what red-blooded Chinese person could forget the Japanese people’s beastly behavior of 70 years ago? If you put on the veneer here of being humane and say we are beasts, then what are you? An angel? You want to show your lenient, benevolent, open-minded heart here? You found the wrong place!! True, those expressing their patriotism here are a little unbalanced, but it also indeed everyone’s true feelings. Our country is not yet powerful enough, not yet able to go all out and avenge our ancestors, because we can only endure hardships, endure the fury in our hearts and struggle to develop in order to surpass Japan as quickly as possible, and then we will see if those bastards will still be so cocky. Under the current situation of our country, aside from grumbling a bit online, what else can we do? Apart from gloating a bit while Japan faces natural disaster, what else can we do? Apart from from advocating the boycott of Japanese goods, what else can we do? But this doesn’t mean this will be all that we will ever be able to do!
As a Chinese person with character, I only hope that Japan does not change history books as it pleases.
But as a member of humanity, let us rebuild our homes together.
Remember history, don’t remember hatred~~
There are good and bad people amongst the Japanese. Towards right-wingers, one shouldn’t be benevolent.
Those people who are taking pleasure from other’s misfortunes, do you guys have any common sense? Do you guys understand what butterfly effect is? And yet you guys are still there stupidly rejoicing. You guys think that with Japan being destroyed by an earthquake like that that China wouldn’t be affected at all? Use your brains and think! And with such a destructive earthquake, if Japan can still rise up, that is deserving of people’s respect and admiration, making the Japanese even more powerful, and you guys are stupidly rejoicing!
Us younger generation stop being all talk and no action, put your energy to comment into more productive work. The day China’s true national strength has surpassed Japan is when we will really have the right to laugh at them. Why is China the world’s factory? Our product technology unable to surpass other countries? All because there are too many people who can only pick fault with others, too many people who talk nonsense. If you want others to respect you, you must have something you are strong/a leader in!!!
However, as a country that suffers a lot of earthquake disasters, Japanese buildings truly hold up well!
This is something China needs to learn from,
where quality is king [the most important].
I know that China and Japan has an irreconcilable hate due to history. I admit I hate that Japan ruthlessly invaded our country, but towards Japan being severely hurt this time I feel sympathy. After all, it is not this new generation of Japanese people who were at fault, nor can they forever carry the crimes of their ancestors. They are innocent. I hope Japan can quickly recover and hope they can stand up again after this disaster.
What do you think of this song?