President Trump, right, with Chinese President Xi Jinping in Beijing in 2017. (Andy Wong/AP)

If only our political leadership could make the case that current China trade behavior is extremely detrimental to the United States [“China’s rise jolts trade dynamic,” front page, May 12]. If only U.S. shoppers could understand the degree and cost of industrial espionage. If only U.S. shoppers could experience the labor abuses, taste the pollution or see how currency manipulation has contributed to inexpensive products and a huge trade imbalance.

If only U.S. shoppers could do with a little less, or spend a little more on something manufactured closer to home. If only U.S. shoppers would accept a little more responsibility for why we are where we are today. If only U.S. shoppers would make a conscious decision not to buy products made in China. Then we might actually see meaningful change in our trade relationship with China based on behavior rather than threats.

Rob Veale, Elizabeth City, N.C.