A group of young Chengdunese women are taking their message of traffic safety to the streets.
Donning skintight, midriff-baring, off-the-shoulder T-shirts and short shorts, the traffic-stopping team of eight volunteers handed out information pamphlets in the Hejiangting area (half a block east of the Shangri-la) on Saturday.
The movement's instigator is a 23-year-old who told Sichuan Online that widely publicized local traffic violations, such as the recent death-penalty sentence handed to drunk driver Sun Weiming, moved her to come up with the "My Generation" traffic-volunteers team.
The volunteers are all women in their early 20s who wear T-shirts emblazoned with their slogan "My Generation, not the spoiled generation" ("我一代,不是富二代").
The generation of Chinese born in the 1980s is often referred to as "the spoiled second generation." The "My Generation" slogan is a way to rebuke that stereotype. The group's leader, who herself is from a well-to-do family, explained that although she and her peers are often labeled as the prodigal children of a society suddenly steeped in abundance, they " ... do feel responsibility and the need to contribute to society. 'My Generation' expresses courage, strength, and self. Anybody with these qualities is part of this 'My Generation.'"
The pamphlets, titled "Civilized Vehicular Traffic, the Message of My Generation" and "Civilized City, the Message of My Generation" (《文明行车,我一代语录》 and 《文明城市,我一代语录》), contain quips meant to discourage drivers from dangerous behaviors.
Quotations from the "My Generation" fliers (translated from Sichuan Online:
"Driving a car enables you to go to the places you want to go. Heaven is in Hangzhou, but it's a bit far. Please drive safely."
"Passing other cars does not show that your car is superior to people."
"Being able to pass cars of the same make or better does not show that your technology is superior to others'."
"The first one to go when the light turns green might still get stuck at the next light."
"During traffic jams, waiting your turn patiently does not show foolishness."
"Racing other cars doesn't reveal your bravado."
"Arriving safely is what you should be most proud of."
"Being able to evade traffic police doesn't make you smart."
"If you park your car where it gets in the way of others, it will be towed."
"When driving through puddles, please drive slowly to avoid splashing pedestrians, especially the elderly, children, and disabled people. Suggestion: Let them go first, and exchange a smile for a smile."
"When you get out of the car, take your bag; place this interesting pamphlet inside your car. During a traffic jam it'll be more useful to you than swearing."
"Life can be short, and sometimes only as short as stepping on the accelerator, running a red light, or failing to brake."