The death of Wuhan doctor Li Wenliang on 7 February 2020 was a turning point in public reactions to the government’s handling of the coronavirus outbreak. The doctor had warned about the new virus, but was silenced and punished, because of the strict prohibition to spread any news about the virus.
He got infected himself and this made him a martyr. The days after his death, many people shared emotions of anger and shame on social media. One posting was widely forwarded: screenshots of CCTV news anchors announcing the punishment of eight doctors for spreading rumours about the various in Wuhan, with a caption from Mencius: “The shame of being shameless. That is shameless indeed.”