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masque wrote

I visited with my family as a kid. We saw a curated list of sights with a government-approved guide, though, so I can't really comment on much based on that experience, except to say that there is so much smog in Beijing. We also saw one of those infamous tiger-and-bear zoos that I guess the government thought reflected well on them? As a result, I am one of the few westerners of my generation who has legitimately seen a tiger jump through a flaming hoop, and a monkey riding a goat on a tightrope.

I briefly had a Chinese roommate who claimed that "There is absolutely zero crime in Shanghai" (dubious) and "My standard of living was higher in China than it is here in Canada" (I'll take his word on that one), but also "In China we aren't free to criticize the government, unlike in Canada where everyone complains constantly."