China's lazy 'Strawberry Kids' blamed on weak parents
China's "Strawberry Generation" of young adults has been blamed on parents who are far too lenient and overindulgent of their children's every whim and fancy to the point of spoiling them.
The term references the sweet looking fruit that's sometimes sour on the inside, and the label has been slapped on kids born after 1980. These "strawberry cupcakes" are also deemed too lazy to do any work hard and too weak to deal with the realities of life in the real world.
Several recent incidents have been making the rounds on China's social media sites. Last month, a boy threatened to kill himself by lying in the middle of a busy street if his dad refused to get him a car. Another slapped his mother in public for presenting him with a fake iPhone.
One girl screamed at her mum in public and reduced her to tears when her mum couldn't afford to pay for her iPhone, her iPad and her MacBook. And another threatened her parents that she would drop out of university if they wouldn't get her an iPhone.
In the case of 21-year-old Xu and his traffic-stopping stunt in Chongqing City, he had demanded a 150,000 yuan (RM75,000) car from his 50-year-old dad who runs a scaffolding business. The car, he said, was one of the requirements put forth by his fiancée's family in order for them to get married.
He had tried that trick before and twisted his dad's arm into giving him a 3,000 yuan computer, neighbours said. However, when his dad turned him down for the car, Xu dashed to the street and planked himself on the road. His dad was forced to promise to take a loan and deliver the car at the end of year.
Days later, however, Xu again demanded for the car but now he wanted it right away. When his dad said no, Xu attacked the family van with a fire extinguisher and smashed all its windows. He then laid down on Pan Long Road again—but this time motorists called the cops and they came to haul him off.
iPhone envy has also caused these "strawberry kids" to humiliate their parents in public. One man in Longkou City of Shandong Province slapped his mother twice after she—a fruit seller—tried to pacify him with an imitation phone in the middle of his shopping. Embarrassed by her, he smashed the phone to the ground and slapped her in front of other customers.
Girls haven't been spared from the "Strawberry Generation" phenomenon. One university freshman from Beijing yelled at her mum in the middle of a store when she was unable to pay for her daughter's iPhone, iPad and MacBook, which totalled over 20,000 yuan. "You don't buy for me, let me lose face in university!" she screamed at her weeping mum.
Another girl threatened to drop out of Huazhong Normal University if her parents didn't get her an iPhone on top of settling her tuition fees. "I won't study here if you don't buy [the phone] since you've paid for everything!" she yelled in the middle of the Hankou campus.
After an hour of talking down by her parents and university lecturers, she was finally persuaded to take the latest model from another brand, even though it was cheaper than the Apple.
Source: Chongqing Times; Xinhua
Published: 12th September 2012