I feel like the Boxers were very barbaric and didn’t really have a reason for all their killing. I believe that the Boxers do deserve a bad reputation.
A cause of the Boxer rebellion was the drought. In shandong there was a flood and then directly after the flood was a drought. Droughts often make people very desperate to survive because it does many things to a normal village: It ruins their livestock, It kills all their crops, and it’s very hot and dry. The Chinese villagers in shandong came up with many theories of how the drought started and one of them was the Christians. The Christians had churches that had rooftops that were shaped like the blade of a knife. The villagers thought that the roof of the churches was stabbing into the sky (The belly of the gods) and was angering the gods which made them put the drought on shandong. Some of the Chinese villagers decided to do something about that and later became the boxers. You see, having a drought can literally turn a place into a barren wasteland.
The Christians had nothing to do with the drought (Obviously) and were suddenly attacked by the boxers. The innocent Christians had literally no idea what was going on because the boxers came to the city/province they were living in and suddenly became hostile. At Yokohama bank the boxers killed their first victim: A Japanese man. After that the boxers slaughtered a lot of people however they did not have the firepower of the western people and the imperial force. There was this greedy leader/governor that saw the boxer’s rage upon the Christians and decided to send out the imperial army not to help the Christians but the support the Boxers because he saw the boxers as a potential threat for himself and wanted to be safe from them. With the help of the imperial army the Boxers slaughtered more people. When all this chaos was slowly unfolding, everyone in the outside world didn’t know what was going on in the city. The post office controlled all communication system from the outside world and from the inside of the city. I believe that the needless slaughter of many people has earned the Boxers their well deserved bad reputation.