Letters to the Editor, September 14, 2017

PUBLISHED : Thursday, 14 September, 2017, 4:58pm
UPDATED : Thursday, 14 September, 2017, 4:58pm

Teach teens that suicide is not a solution

Over the last few years, there has been a rise in the number of teenage suicides in Hong Kong.

So I can understand why there are efforts to cut the workload of students (“To prevent teen suicide, cap number of hours Hong Kong pupils study, group urges”, September 10).

The group wants seven hours to be the “standard study” time, but I wonder if that is a realistic goal. Students reading the report will probably feel the same way as I do.

They face a heavy workload during the school day and in the evening with homework. Even when they have a holiday, the teacher gives them assignments to complete.

Many youngsters are just too busy to be able to pursue a ­hobby or relax properly. They feel tired and stressed, trying to meet the high expectations from parents and teachers alike.

The government should ­arrange talks to help students with stress management. ­Emotional education is the key.

Youngsters need to be taught to develop the coping mechanisms that help them to deal with stress, and recognise that suicide is not a solution.

Oscar Au Yeung, Po Lam

Cut syllabus to set standard study hours

About 90 per cent of respondents to a concern group survey, comprising mostly parents and students, backed calls for ­“standard study hours”.

Students in local schools are under a lot of stress, particularly with the Hong Kong Diploma of Secondary Education exam. The exam creates a very competitive environment, as teens fight for a limited number of places at local ­universities.

This puts them under a great deal of mental strain, especially when teachers and parents expect so much of them. Some who cannot handle the ­pressure even take their own lives.

In order to resolve this ­problem, the government must come up with a modified ­syllabus which reduces the number of hours students are forced to put in during the day, and also after school with ­homework.

The administration should recognise that teenagers are the future of our society and so it must act responsibly.

Walter Chong, Tseung Kwan O

Tear down this wheel with no ‘wow’ factor

The embarrassing debate that played out recently in the media about our waterfront Ferris wheel shows how low affairs have sunk in Hong Kong.

The Hong Kong Observation Wheel is yet another in a long list of mismanaged projects, showing a complete lack of imagination. Add to this the Kai Tak Cruise Terminal, the West Kowloon Cultural District and that “bridge to nowhere” – the Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macau bridge. The list just keeps growing.

The Central harbourfront should be the crowning glory of Hong Kong and not the disgrace that it is today.

Our wheel is not special in any way and would be more ­appropriate as a visiting fairground attraction. What is ­special about it? It is not the largest, there is no “wow” factor.

It is dwarfed by almost everything around it ­(unlike London, Singapore or soon Dubai).

Hong Kong has one of the greatest harbours in the world, a natural focal point for the entire community and visitors alike. Yet, all we see are failed, poorly ­managed or ill-thought-out projects that are just a waste of taxpayers’ funds.

I hate to say this, but Singapore didn’t even used to have a harbourfront worthy of note; however, they have built an ­attraction around the Marina Bay area out of very little. Nature gave us our beautiful harbour. What have we got? An underpass and some rough land.

Tear down the wheel I say, and show leadership that the community can be proud of.

David M. Dixon, Central

Waste water drive by textile sector laudable

Most industries produce waste water and sewage during their production process.

So I welcome the news that some clothes manufacturers on the mainland are reducing their waste water in an effort to ­ensure a greener production process and reduce pollution.

I hope industries will invest in more new technology, like water treatment facilities, so that they generate less pollution. It is good to see more firms making these investments, so that less waste water is discharged.

Kristy Lam, Kwai Chung

Kim must see that talks are smart option

I agree with Icy Po that talks are the best way to resolve the crisis in the Korean peninsula (“North Korea should aim for negotiations”, September 11).

The nuclear tests that have been carried out by North Korea are causing concern throughout the region. Indeed, leaders of countries the world over are ­worried about the implications of what is ­happening there.

I understand that Kim Jong-un wants to display his country’s strength, but this is not the right way to do it.

One miscalculation could lead to a serious conflict.

Even in a conventional war on the peninsula, there would be a heavy casualty rate, with many people killed and injured in South and North Korea.

The only way to ensure this does not happen is through negotiations.

Talks will give all sides the opportunity to say precisely what they want and come to an agreement on what North Korea can and cannot do.

I wish Kim would recognise that this is the only sensible course of action that is open to him and that further nuclear tests are not the answer.

Louis Fung Lam-lap, Sau Mau Ping