Subway security unleashed the fury of China’s goths after forcing a young woman to remove her makeup, provoking an online backlash for which metro authorities were no match.
A security guard in the southern Chinese city of Guangzhou likely did not understand the dark power she was toying with when she demanded a young woman remove her dramatic black lipstick and heavy eye-liner before riding the metro, fearing it would “distress” the other passengers.
In a post on Chinese social-media site Weibo, the unnamed woman recounted her run-in with security, and her post was quickly shared over 5,000 times. The post brought to light similar incidents of discrimination against goths’ horror-inspired fashion choices, inciting widespread anger over the authorities meddling in passengers’ self-expression.
“As a Chinese citizen, I’m hoping to use this relatively public platform to challenge the authorities: What laws grant you the right to stop me and waste my time?” she wrote, in a post republished by Chinese news site Sina.
Using the hashtag #ASelfieForTheGuangzhouMetro, goths across China heeded the call, flooding Weibo with a deluge of pale faces, black lace and dyed hair. The selfies were accompanied with messages of solidarity, and warnings for those who would dare to defy the goths of the Chinese metro, such as “We are not like others, And WE Will not Apologize.”
Their efforts were not in vain, as days later the Guangzhou Metro offered a full apology. They admitted that security personnel had acted improperly in asking girls to remove their “gothic makeup” and put forth some concrete steps they would be taking to improve security standards.
According to China Daily the worker in question was temporarily suspended and will be required to take a remedial retraining course upon returning, something like goth sensitivity training, probably.
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