American support for Chinese robbery must stop


By Lauren Wasserman ’19


A theft has been reported. The perpetrator has stolen somewhere between $225 billion and $600 billion. The victim is charging the perpetrator 25 percent taxes on $50 billion worth of items given back. When stated this way, almost any person would say the victim is rightfully seeking justice. But what if I told you the perpetrator was China and the victim was the United States? And the 25 percent taxes is tariffs America is placing on Chinese exports. Why when put in this way, do so many people think twice in determining if trade restrictions placed on China (from America) are justifiable.


As American companies create factories in China, they trust China with their intellectual property. Intellectual property is defined as the designs, ideas, technologies or inventions to which one owns. China has stolen mass amounts of this intellectual property in order to grow their own economy. In reaction, Trump has placed tariffs on Chinese exports to stop the economic imbalance building amongst the two countries. Many citizens are criticizing these regulations, claiming Trump is causing an unnecessary dispute with China and is contradicting the American ideal of free trade. However, Trump’s actions should be supported as he is protecting the economy and is simply prioritizing certain American ideals, not neglecting them.


As China steals America’s intellectual property, they are creating cheaper counterfeits of our original products. These knockoffs are more appealing to the consumer due to their lower prices. Due to such competition, American companies are losing business which takes a toll on employment rates. According to MarketWatch, one-third of our manufacturing jobs were lost due to Chinese theft. While the American economy is shrinking due to such theft, China’s economy is growing. According to, China’s economy is expanding three times the rate of America’s economy. With this increasingly rapid rate, China’s GDP will have surpassed America’s by 2028. Money is power, and falling behind China can cause many military and social imbalances for the country. Thus, imposing such tariffs is necessary. These regulations complicate Chinese sales and exports; slowing down businesses that have affected American employment. If such businesses are slowed down, American jobs can be restored. In addition to this, these tariffs work to gain back lost money, strengthening the economy as a whole. While China may be unhappy with the tariffs, a leader must look out for his / her people’s well being. By restricting Chinese exports, Trump is relieving American stress and protecting the country from further economic decline.


Although the United States has advocated for free trade in the past, this is not an evergreen idea. It is undeniable free trade has benefited the country and the world in the past. It has paved the way for improved technologies, growing markets and expanding diversity. However, just because it has produced positive outcomes in the past, does not mean it always will. As Chinese factories steal American inventions, America must take action. Citizen’s who strongly advocate for free trade need to understand this is a crisis, and sitting back accepting defeat is not an option. It would be ridiculous if Trump allowed China to freely take money and jobs from the United States solely due to ideas that were fostered years ago. By allowing China to grow, and possibly outrank America, we are simply contradicting our core beliefs. China is a communist country. If China continues growing, communism influence could as well. According to, GDP is a top factor in evaluating a country’s ability to influence others. While America may have supported unrestricted trade in the past, it is now a question of free trade or a potential spread of communism. Allowing communism to spread under our watch would be very disrespectful to soldiers who have fought in anti-communist wars like the Vietnam War. By contending that Trump’s actions are hypocritical simply because they do not follow precedent, we are neglecting other American ideals. It is important to consider consequences and note that as time changes, so does emphasis placed on certain values.  


So, tariffs placed on China from America are fair, as they simply work to reverse the harm China has caused. Furthermore, they actually support what the United States stands for. People will nitpick anything the Trump administration does without taking into account Trump’s reasoning. Labeling such actions un-American just because this country has previously placed emphasis on other ideals is unprogressive and disappointing. America is a country of power, and to maintain such power we must be adaptable to changes in the world around us. Trump is working to help us gain back and sustain our power. Conflict with China may be a side effect, but it is important that America fights for itself instead of conceding defeat.