China: He Kexin and “babygate”

Imagethief picks up the debate on the age issue of He Kexin, the golden girl of Chinese gymnastics, and notices a cold-war double standard in some of the mainstream media report with a story plot of Ours=plucky, heroic achievers. Theirs=manufactured robots/slaves/dopers.


  • Chinesekidintheus

    Well, I’m of course, Chinese kid in the us. Caroline is really sadly wrong. There is proof that they are under aged, a lot of proof, but the Chinese government has banned people from accessing it. I like China, not the government,but the people. The real reason the IOC is being such a fucking pussy is because china has home filed advantage. They are hosting the Olympics,and if they lost their medals, they would be disgraced for ever.

  • Lala

    To Sue:

    Judges don’t judge their own country. That’s one of the rules so there is no favoritism. The commentators often mention that.

  • Lala

    BTW, all Chinese girls look young. I think it has something to do with the diet. Most don’t enter puberty until 13 or 14.

  • Christi

    To clarify on the judging comment about judging your own country…I agree that it has become unbelievably confusing. As for the person who stated the He’s bar routine was much more difficult than Liukin’s, might I remind you that they both had a start value of 7.7 which is the highest you can have. They also tied for gold and their scores were so tied that it came down to only 3 judges scores that determined which one received the gold. I do not consider this a landslide by any means. Then we have the judging itself. If you have a competitor from your country in the competition, you cannot be a judge. Therefore, judges from the top countries of China, USA, Russia, Romania and other countries who have top gymnastics programs were not judging. The judges were from Australia, New Zealand and other countries who have never produced a single medal winner of any color. The biggest problem is the inexperience of the judges in being able to differentiate between skills with the new scoring system and it effected athletes from EVERY country!

  • Sophia

    “First of all to caroline-learn how to type and spell.It is very annoying when you post something for all to read and it makes you look like someone who does not care how others see you!I like my life and I’m happy to be in a country where you can speak your mind and have free will to do things as you wish!”

    To Sarasota,
    It’s not just about looks.

    Just like you think the Chinese gymnasts look young, you assume that they are underage. Caroline typed some words wrong,you assume that she’s inconsiderate. How do you know that she is not learning to type? Why does she need to care how others see her? She is only writing out whatever she thinks, the free will that you called.

    Stay wheverever you are, listening to the same old reportors that you favors. How dare anybody else give you any suggestions and ask you open your mind a little bit.

  • There is no way that girl is 16…..she still has her baby teeth. She does not even have a form to her body…so say what you want..there is no way she is 16.

  • Sue in Sarasota

    What I really wanted to type was that when you don’t take the time to spell correctly it makes you look like an idiot. Capitalizing the first letter in the sentence is nice too. It means that you are not lazy and can hold down the shift key. And the last time I checked “America” should be capitalized.
    I can open my mind but common courtesy goes a long way!!!!!
    How sad that people in this country can condemn a person for trying to better another. Get real!
    The issue here is whether China cheated. Which I for one believe that they did! So Sophia, get off of your soap box, take a step back, and relax! This is only a blog not a life and death situation!

  • mama

    I think that it is very disrespectful and grasping at straws for the NBC commentators to accuse the judges of being inexperienced. Further, Valeri Liukin’s comment about the judge not having a gymnast from their country qualifying is irrelevant.

    The FIG and IOC didn’t just pick up these judges off the street. These people have to qualify to be a judge. Nastia had errors and so did the He Kexin. The score was close, the tie break was invoked and therefore Nastia lost.

  • Anna

    Unfair to this little girl. They should have sorted it out before the Games — the question came up weeks ago. He Kexin looks about a Tanner III (pediatricians use this system to approximate a teenage child’s age), so she’s somewhere between 11-13, even allowing for her near-zero body fat, athleticism and ethnic background. They would have known they had a genius gymnast by the time she was about 6 or 7 at the latest, so she was ready to compete by about age 9, so the first date they gave, January 1 (isn’t that a coincidence for her birthday?) was probably a lie as well. Whatever the outcome, it isn’t fair to these girls who are so talented and worked so hard, and were always gracious to the other competitors. It’s too bad to have this controversy mar such a wonderful two weeks. The Chinese people have done a great job — this is just stinky politics. They should throw out the age limit, get some people who know what they’re doing on the IOC, and just drop the whole 2008 medal issue — it’s too late to do anything respectable about it now.

  • Julie

    I’m so sick of hearing “poor little Chinese girl”..He is NO WAY 16 years old..and please stop bringing in the factor of Chinese girls are small..that is all an excuse. The bottom line is she cheated. Her medals should be taken away period. Don’t think the Chinese government didn’t fix this so she could compete. I personally didn’t care for their opening ceremony and the fact that they cheated when they chose the prettier girl and dubbed her voice. The fireworks were ebelished for TV and my biggest complaint..choosing 12 year olds to compete and have them lie about their ages. Rules in the sport are meant to be followed…BY ALL COUNTRIES! To be totally honest, I got sick and tired of China winning everything. I stopped watching after a while. They are a country who lies and cheats to get what they want and I hope that they are never allowed to host another one again..unless that country learns how to play fair..doubt it!!!

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