SORRY THIS IS NOT A NORMAL PHOTO POST, IT IS MY LETTER RESPONDING TO THE STANDARD’S EDITOR MARY MA’S EDITORIAL POSTED TODAY, REFLECTING MY VIEWS AND HOPEFULLY (ACCURATELY) THE VIEWS OF THE HONG KONG PEOPLE.
To the Editor of The Standard:
Thank you for taking the time to read this e-mail; I greatly appreciate The Standard as a free-print newspaper in Hong Kong and read it - along with your articles - daily. However, your editorial today titled “Time to nip ill-feeling in the bud” is an issue that strikes very close to home for me and must warrant a response to express my views as well as the views of thousands of other Hongkongers. <p>
Your first line strikes out against the local population that makes it seem as though it were the locals who caused a scene, and made something out of nothing. “Local prejudices” are very real, but they are not from locals directed at mainlanders. As you work in a major Hong Kong news outlet, I am amazed that you fail to recognize the D&G protests were sparked because of racial discrimination and a clear violation of the freedom of the press, which is the industry you work in. The prejudices, if any, were not directed to mainlanders, but rather directed to Hongkongers. I am deeply offended that you ignore this issue and ignore the core reason as to why there would be such heated response from Hongkongers in 2012, 15 years after the handover. When people protested outside of D&G, it was not a riot, nor an act of hatred; it was the standing up for our rights in a time where they are very much in question.
In your opinion, what occurred in that video on the MTR may have been a “minor incident”, but it represents the breaking of the regulations set forth by the MTR and may result in a fine. To brush it off as a “minor incident” takes the emphasis off the fact that mainlanders have long ignored the local customs, rules, and regulations, and finally we have begun to speak up. To be in Hong Kong means to follow the law, and it means to respect the infrastructure we have in place. Eating may not seem like a blatant violation; how about urinating on the MTR? These incidents are well documented and I will link them to you at the end of my letter.
Perhaps what has been most disturbing and shocking to me were the three questions you posed, asking why locals felt such strong emotions towards mainlanders: was it because we fear we may lose our rice bowl? That they skyrocketed our price levels? Or because we lost our sense or “prestige”? Your last one was closer; it is because we lost our sense of law and order, or community, of unity, and of fairness. The manners in which they conduct themselves in public is an embarrassment to Hongkongers who see it, and an embarrassment to those who call themselves Chinese. No one begrudges their economic prosperity, but it is the attitude of superiority, that they can ignore the law, that angers us, because the culture of Hong Kong is that of a law-abiding and orderly society.
I well assure you hatred is well and alive on both sides, and while regrettable, it is unfair for you to mention one side of the story. I will further link videos of mainland TV hosts insulting Hongkongers at the end of this letter, and in your Monday issue, I hope you may address this issue in your editorial. Thank you for taking your time to read my letter and I hope we may continue a respectful dialogue on this issue which affects many of us.
Reasons Why We Hate