One concerned, culturally-sensitive citizen in China recently photographed a foreigner “disrespecting” a historical artifact from the Ming dynasty era, but somehow failed to generate the expected outrage after the photos were uploaded online.
In the images widely shared on Chinese social media, the foreign mother was shown placing her two kids on a 600-year-old horse sculpture located along the popular “Spirit Way” near the Ming Xiaoling Mausoleum in Nanjing.
The path leading to the mausoleum which is lined with majestic ancient animal statues has been an ideal spot for selfies or group photos by both local and foreign tourists. The netizen who uploaded the photo probably wanted to point out that the expat mom ignored the nearby Chinese sign that said visitors are not allowed to mount the historical artifact, NetEase reported (via Shanghaiist)
While the photo indeed went viral, most Chinese social media users didn’t find the photo too controversial as the sight was actually a normal occurrence. It turns out, local tourists have also been guilty of the prohibited behavior for a very long time.
“The spirit animals at the Ming Xiaoling Mausoleum have been ridden year in and year out, so much that their backs have become smooth and slippery,” a netizen was quoted as saying.
Another commenter seemed to sum it out perfectly by saying, “When in Rome, do as the Romans do.”