The rich should help the poor

PUBLISHED : Monday, 14 March, 2011, 12:00am
UPDATED : Monday, 14 March, 2011, 12:00am

I was appalled by a comment by Zong Qinghou, China's richest man, that poor people on 'should help themselves'' (Young Post, March 8).

In recent decades, the wealth gap on the mainland has widened greatly. Despite the great wealth in cities like Beijing and Shanghai, millions of people in rural areas remain poor.

The central government has made some efforts to narrow the gap between rich and poor, but it hasn't done enough.

Unfortunately, the mainland's richest people are rather stingy when it comes to philanthropy. Instead, Zong blames the poor for their poverty by implying that they don't work hard enough. Clearly he doesn't know how hard poor people need to work just to make ends meet.

Many poor people from villages travel great distances away from home to become migrant workers. They suffer loneliness and hardships. I hope rich people on the mainland will do more to help them.

Karly Sung Ka-lee, King Ling College

From the Editor

It looks like Zong's callous comments have touched a nerve with students at King Ling College. Quite a few have written to us expressing their opinions.

While it is easy to be upset about Zong's remarks, he does have a point. He himself did not have much in the way of education or wealthy parents to help him out. He started out running a small grocery shop in a school, but today he owns Wahaha, the biggest beverage company on the mainland. He is the richest man in the country and has earned his fortune the hard way.

You can see more student letters under the opinion section of Tell us what you think.

Susan, Editor