What young Hongkongers need for a sense of national identity
I refer to the debate over how the national anthem and history can help Hongkongers learn to celebrate their national identity. I believe education and persuasion are indeed better than legal approaches, but they aren’t always the best way.
First, let us not call learning about China the responsibility of local students, as that would make it sound like another form of indoctrination, as many teenagers think. We teens know clearly what China went through to gain today’s glory. Yet, the way China has been dealing with controversial issues is the main reason locals aren’t eager to celebrate their national identity and would rather call themselves Hongkongers.
But there is no excuse for booing the national anthem. The lyrics of the anthem tell us how Chinese have been looked down upon but would never give up until they won. These are things we Hongkongers should feel proud of, not mock, but this is what the present China has done to us.
Many people think that education can help people gain a sense of national identity. However, it’s not because we lack acknowledgement of the past that we’re doing the opposite. It’s because both sides lack effective communication.
Cassandra Chan, Lam Tin