Slow, polluting seniors removed from Beijing city streets


Journalist-blogger Zhang Rui reposts the following report on Beijing's new regulations:

* * * * *

According to trustworthy rumor (source:, Beijing will completely ban the old and middle-aged from the streets starting on 1 January 2007.

To relieve transportation pressures in the city, to continue the positive social trend of restricting small vehicles, motorcycles, and electric bicycles, and in response to insistent requests by the greater public, the elderly are now restricted. Reasoning is as follows:

1. Low speed: As everyone knows, because of their age and sense of self-preservation, seniors' legs are not that great. They move slowly; according to incomplete statistics, most seniors over 60 travel at speeds less than 0.5 kph, far slower than adults, and this has a large effect on traffic pressures; they cannot keep up with the pace of the times.

2. High pollution: Seniors' respiratory systems are in decline, and they also have their own personal bad habits; they frequently spit or blow their nose on the ground, and they litter. This has a large effect on the environment.

3. Silent movement: Seniors typically make no noise when they walk. Unlike planes, artillery, or trains, which are detectable from far off, they typically only register when they are right in front of you. This leaves little reaction time for people walking or driving and makes accidents highly likely.

4. Many hidden threats: Seniors have brittle bones; should they bump into something, they may easily be hurt. And since they cannot be repaired, fees are high for nursing care, giving an extremely high level of emotional stress to the city's residents. Many animated citizens told this reporter that when they see old people walking on the road, they stay far away, afraid of getting into an accident. And a few drivers said that even the breeze whipped up by passing cars could topple old people; they supported the government restrictions on seniors 200%.

5. A boost for other needs: If all seniors are unable to go out to buy groceries, the old people shut in at home may accelerate the development of the nanny industry, increasing the employment rates of rural women.

The regulation in detail:

From the occasion of their 60th birthday, seniors will be banned from the roads; restricted areas include all bridges, main roads, and curbs, with neighborhood roads excluded. On-site supervision will be administered by our valiant army of chengguan [urban administration]. Inspections of residents' IDs will take place at scheduled times, and chengguan have the authority to check the ID of any suspicious person. Anyone discovered to be exceeding the standard will be impounded and sent to a community control center; if in three days family members do not post bail, then they will be considered abandoned and dealt with accordingly, with no further responsibility assumed.

This reporter interviewed a random selection of young people on the street; 100% of the public supported the government's policy, and they all said that after the restrictions on small vehicles, motorcycles, and electric bikes, this once one more project done with the people in mind. The government had done a good thing for the common people.

Those people who had seen losses because of the limits on small vehicles, motorcycles, and electric bikes, also said:

When they began to restrict small vehicles I did not say anything;
When they began to restrict motorcycles I did not say anything;
When they began to restrict electric bikes I did not say anything;
So now that they've started to restrict the elderly, why should we say anything?!

These contents herein are completely fictional, any similarities are entirely preposterous!


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There are currently 12 Comments for Slow, polluting seniors removed from Beijing city streets.

Comments on Slow, polluting seniors removed from Beijing city streets

I am sorry to say this is something unbelieveable. If it really happens, there must be something wrong with the authorities.


This will mean no popping out of any senior Party meetings to enjoy the fresh Beijing air.

This really is funny. Some words in it deserves thinking. Most Chinese keep silent when bad things happen to people but not to themselves.

I realize this is humor, but the intended comparison between banning the elderly and banning motorcycles is absurd. Motorcycles present a very real danger. They come roaring down the bicycle lane at full speed, completely oblivious to anyone in their path. If motorcyclists would discipline themselves, they wouldn't need to be regulated. But they simply will not stay on the road, so they need to go. The elderly are actually treated quite well in Beijing (except that many of them are forced to retire sooner than they would like). They are not a threat to anyone and most of them are very pleasant. Comparing them to undisciplined motorcyclists is very unfair.

i propose we eat people who don't enjoy satire

you must realize that is isn't certainly impossible in a country that has some of the most absurd rules and restrictions to begin with (try to post old used clothing out of the country). But it is certainly fiction, with a worry of truth. as things are in China.. restrictions come at a pace allowing the peoples adaptation to it to hold with the simple thought "there is nothing I can do about it". and in time.. with the frog in boiling water analogy people accept greater and greater restriction. leading such a comment as "So now that they've started to restrict the elderly, why should we say anything?" to be far from unheard of.

Funny and fictional for now, but with the Olympics coming up, no one should underestimate the will of the Beijing gov't and the CCPC to make Beijing looking as modern and clean as possible and Chinese people over 50 generally do not contribute to either goal at all.

Heck, they could ship all of the old people and migrants out and fill the city with college students and young PLA soldiers in civilian clothes from all over China.

Why oh why do Chinese cardrivers blind their side windows of the car? This is very dangerous as there is no visual contact possible between the other traffic, bikers and walking people.

Blind side windows is in the western countries absolutely forbidden. It is proven to cause many road accidents. Victims are most of the time the vulnerable road users like bikers and walking people. Yes I am a biker! I don't smeer up the air, I don't cause injuries to other traffic users, and I don't waste our natural sources, so, a little bit of respect from crazy cardrivers in Beijing should be not too much to ask!

I found this article very amusing. I do respect the elderly but I must say, if you're too slow, whether young or old, get the hell out of my way. Special attention to all the retards walking through office halls at 6 steps per minute. You will be piked!

unbelievable. quite mean though. you will be old one day too. unless you have a elixir...

Oh yes, seniors have absolutely no reasons to be outside period ... it is just best for them to wither away in their wheelchairs in nursing homes, fed by others, watch TV and play card games all day (please note the intense sarcasm) ...

Um..wait till you get old

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