Long Blog 2 Suzhou locals hated new coming non-locals
Locals should have lived in Suzhou for several generations, they feel like they are the owner of the city. Why do the locals have an innate pride?
As many people come into the town, the conflict between local people and non-local people gets more intense.
Local people a spontaneous sense of pride that they are better than everyone else. The reason behind it is just the brilliant history of Suzhou.
There is a brief overview of Suzhou’s history. Just providing a sense of what kind of city Suzhou is in the past thousands of years.
Suzhou has a warm and humid climate, fertile land, dense rivers and lakes, and is convenient for irrigation and fishery. It has been a land of fish and rice since ancient times. As early as thousands of years ago, the ancestors of Suzhou began to fish and grow rice. By the Tang and Song Dynasties, Suzhou had become the national agricultural center. According to historical records, in the Song Dynasty, Suzhou and Huzhou produced more than 10 million shi (per shi equals 60 kilograms) each year. Based on the population of more than 11 million households in the country at that time, the grain produced in Suzhou could be distributed to every household in the country with one shi(per shi equals 60 kilograms). At that time, people said: “Su Lake is mature and the world is full.” （“苏湖熟，天下足”） Which means the amounts harvested in Suzhou is enough for people all over the country.
Suzhou has developed industrially since ancient times. The “Wu Jian”(a famous sword) in the Spring and Autumn Period, the sea boats in the Three Kingdoms period, and the “Song Jin” and “Wu Jian” （huge boats）in the Northern Song Dynasty are all excellent products that were produced in Suzhou and were well-known throughout the country. And Suzhou’s embroidery (Su embroidery), fan-making, and jade carving craftsmanship are leading in the country, and they are still selling well both at home and abroad. During the Tang and Song Dynasties, Suzhou was already a prosperous commercial port. “There is heaven on the top, and Suzhou and Hangzhou on the bottom” as the saying goes, means that Suzhou and Hangzhou were well-developed society and economy at that time, and their people lived well.
Here is a drawing capturing the ancient commercial street in Suzhou. Reflects the richness of Suzhou before. Many people row a boat to shop and buy goods. Shows the development of Suzhou’s economy and manufacturing industry
Additionally, Suzhou has been miraculously free from any major wars. Even in World War II, Suzhou is considered a relatively lucky city. This helps the economy stay stable and developed rapidly. Which attracts many people to come to Suzhou to find a better living.
Local people in Suzhou look down on foreigners, so you will find in many old Suzhou shops that when you order food, if you speak Suzhou local dialect, the waiter will be very enthusiastic, but if you speak Mandarin, they will ignore you. Suzhou local’s point of view is also really simple: “Because there has never been a place like Suzhou that has been accepting refugees for hundreds of years. Your life was going well. Suddenly, a group of people ask for money. Would you give them a good face?”
However, this is never fair for non-local people. The macroeconomy is slowing down, and even the income of the financial and real estate industries is not as good as before. However, the housing prices in the first-tier cities (Like Suzhou)have not fallen. Although they are temporarily forcibly held, they will continue to grow with the money supply M2 at any time in the future. In fact, megacities are “kicking out people”, using various administrative or invisible methods to control the permanent population. The young new Beijing/Shanghai/Shenzhen/Guangzhou/Suzhou non-local people are facing increasing pressure in life.
These people are under pressure of living, and the opportunity cost for them to work in Suzhou is higher than the local people. Therefore they need to work extra hard than local people. It is already really hard for them to survive in the city, and they have to deal with the inequality at the same time.
Here is a picture of people going back to their hometown for the spring festival. They are facing an extremely hard condition.
This issue needs everyone’s attention, it affects the quality of life of many people. Just as I was writing this article, the Chinese government held two sessions (annual plenary sessions of the national or local People’s Congress and the national or local committee of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference. ), where people’s representatives can raise some social issues to make the leaders pay attention to. The conflict between locals and non-locals is a huge social issue that needs attention.