As tensions between the U.S. and China increased during the 2022 Beijing Winter Olympics, Chinese-American athletes face heightened scrutiny in the Chinese-led social media on Thursday, Feb. 10, with many of them receiving criticism for their alleged lack of patriotism.

Nathan Chen, a 22-year-old figure skater who won a gold medal on Thursday, received criticism in the Chinese social media app Weibo for being too American, with many calling him a “traitor” and telling him to “get out of China,” according to the New York Post.

Chen, who has refused to speak Chinese in interviews due to his supposed lack of proficiency, has also been condemned by Chinese social media for statements he and fellow figure skater Evan Bates made in October regarding the reported violations of human rights that China is currently facing.

He also received criticism for a 2018 Olympic performance where he did a routine with a song from the film "Mao’s Last Dance," a drama based on the real-life story of a Chinese dancer who defected to the United States in the 1980s.

In comparison to the reception that Chen has received, fellow Chinese-American Olympian Eileen Gu has received a welcome reception on Chinese social media, with many labeling her as “Miss Perfect” for representing China in the Olympics, CNN reported.

Gu, who has been called the “pride of China” on social media after her gold medal win on Tuesday, has evaded questions regarding her citizenship and as well as why she is currently representing China in the Olympics.

“When I'm in China, I'm Chinese. When I'm in the U.S., I'm American,” she said.

She has received fame in China for her poised looks and background, representing Tiffany & Co. and Louis Vuitton as a fashion model while planning to go to Stanford once the Olympics are over.

Gu has been criticized in Chinese social media, however, for insensitive statements regarding her background and knowledge of China, with a statement regarding VPNs being criticized for not taking into account the everyday conditions of normal Chinese citizens.

As China and U.S. tensions grow even more fraught, the Chinese-American Olympians who are currently competing in the 2022 Beijing Olympics have received increased scrutiny from Chinese social media. This is a representational image. Dave Kim/Unsplash.

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