A day after Chinese state media outlet Xinhua published an op-ed calling Taiwan President Tsai Ing-wen extremist because she’s single, a government directive to remove the article from all media has been leaked (in Chinese).
As BBC noted in its translation, the original article claimed, “As a single female politician, Tsai Ing-wen does not have the emotional burden of love, of ‘family’ or children so her political style and strategies are displayed to be more emotional, personal and extreme.” The criticism was aimed at Tsai’s choice to not mention the 1992 Consensus in her inauguration speech. She has, however, said that Taiwan would maintain the status quo with respect to relations with China.
The article received significant backlash on Chinese social media platform Weibo, with one netizen chiming in that “They are probably threatened that a cat lady like Ms Tsai could beat any men she sets her mind to – they are intimidated.”
As China faces its own criticism for the population of so-called “leftover” women and a widening gender gap, many readers felt that the editorial was unfair for criticizing single women in general.