PUBLISHED : Tuesday, 17 February, 2004, 12:00am
UPDATED : Tuesday, 17 February, 2004, 12:00am

Q Should the Victoria Park cats be saved?

I have always regarded stray dogs and cats as the victims of irresponsible humans. With the involvement of the SPCA's cat colony scheme, whereby they are de-sexed, vaccinated and micro-chipped, they should be left alone and given a place to live. They should not be exterminated. They have a right to survive. Please respect them as living creatures, not things.

Yvonne Tang, Mongkok

I think the cats in Victoria Park should be exterminated - they carry disease, they are pests and they have fleas. They are no different to rats.

Excluding them from the pest exterminator's poison on the grounds that they are 'cute' is out of order: I think chickens and ducks are cute but that hasn't stopped millions of them being brutally slaughtered. Why should cats get a better deal?

Name and address supplied

Having just moved here, I was delighted to walk around Victoria Park and see the cats playing with each other. I noticed they brought smiles to many other people's faces as well. Trapping and destroying them is not the answer. I support the local residents' ideas to trap, neuter and vaccinate them. They are living creatures and they deserve to have their place in the park.

Holly Duncan, Mid-Levels

Victoria Park's cats should be saved. I am a cat lover and have four cats in the apartment. The well-being of a pet depends entirely on the owner. If the owner takes care of his or her pet, there will not be a problem of any sort at all. In short, I think the owners are the root of the problem. It is unjustified to kill the animals on account of the bad behaviour of their owners.

I suggest that all kittens be micro-chipped at their very first medical check-up. Having done that, the SPCA or Agriculture Fisheries and Conservation Department would have no problem tracing the owners and holding them responsible. A penalty of some sort should be imposed on the owners. This would at least cut down on the bad human behaviour.

Tina Niem, Repulse Bay

Q Should Wedding Card Street be saved?

I am a foreign exchange student from Singapore. I learned about Lee Tung Street only when I read reports on its imminent demolition, prompting me to make a trip down to the place over the weekend to have a look for myself.

Lee Tung Street seemed to be tucked away - it does not stand out from the rest of the streets, nor does it have bright lights attracting people to the place. But as one walks down the street, the age of the buildings and the shops conveys a distinct nostalgic flavour that skyscrapers and shopping malls cannot provide.

At the moment, tourists probably wouldn't take the trouble to travel down to Lee Tung Street just to look at the place. But with the help of the Hong Kong Tourism Board, Lee Tung Street can be made into a tourist attraction.

Why not offer a cultural class in Chinese wedding customs and tradition and bring visitors to Wedding Card Street to see the artwork of the wedding invitation cards, as well as other wedding souvenirs such as chopsticks and the like?

This way, Lee Tung Street can be preserved and the business of the printing shops will not be affected. The whole district will become more bustling and vibrant.

It is tragic that with the imminent reconstruction, not only the old shops and buildings of Wedding Card Street are to be demolished but with that, the character and personality of the place.

Maria Ng Shu-yi, Clear Water Bay

Q What should be done to combat school violence?

I have the good fortune to have lived and studied in both Singapore and Hong Kong for 18 years. To many people who view Singapore as the clean-and-green, extremely safe city, school violence in the island state is surprisingly high. This may shock some people.

To give some background on the system in Singapore, most schools have large class numbers. Many classes have more than 40 students, some even approaching 50. Although weapons are seldom used, there are many fistfights in most schools on a regular basis, some resulting in severe injury.

However, the one main factor that prevents these problems from getting out of hand and causing serious harm is the discipline management of Singapore schools. Some people may know that school discipline is very strict. Also, corporal punishment is used frequently, in the form of caning.

I was shocked to learn that any form of corporal punishment is banned in Hong Kong schools and even hitting a student's hand with a ruler can result in complaints and court cases. This is probably why students can get out of hand.

I feel that Hong Kong students are no more violent, mean or destructive than Singapore students. The lack of corporal punishment is what causes a lack of deterrent from committing violent acts.

Another factor is how the police deal with these cases. In Singapore, most fight cases, besides being punished by the school's discipline committee, will be handed over to the Secret Societies Branch of the police for further investigation as to whether secret societies or gangs were involved.

I would like to commend the Hong Kong police for their success in making Hong Kong much safer in recent years. However, from what friends here have told me, there may not be enough done in investigating these cases in schools.

John Lim, Sai Kung