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  • Sep 20, 2014
  • Updated: 1:00pm
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'Bring children to pee in Hong Kong': Mainlander starts campaign after public urination clash

Call for action may break mainland law; call of nature may cost HK$2,000

PUBLISHED : Friday, 25 April, 2014, 1:39pm
UPDATED : Saturday, 26 April, 2014, 7:45am

Internet users calling on mainlanders to let their children relieve themselves in Hong Kong streets - in protest at this week's photographing of a toddler doing just that - have been warned they could end up in trouble, along with anyone who takes part in the protest.

Mainland law prohibits encouragement of such disruptions of public order even if it takes place elsewhere, a veteran lawyer with experience in both jurisdictions said yesterday.

The warning came as controversy continued to snowball over the incident in which a video of a mainland couple allowing their toddler to urinate and defecate on a busy Mong Kok street was posted online.

Solicitor Thomas So Shiu-tsung said Articles 290 and 291 of the mainland criminal code outlawed "assembling a crowd to disrupt social order" and "assembling a crowd to disrupt order of public places".

Article 7, meanwhile, allowed the state to punish citizens who commit such offences outside the mainland.

"It depends on the size of the activity," So said. "If there are only a couple of people turning up, it is unlikely that amounts to an offence."

Hong Kong's Public Cleansing and Prevention of Nuisances Regulation prohibits those in charge of a child under 12 from permitting the child, without reasonable excuse, "to obey the call of nature in any public street". Violators face a HK$2,000 fine.

Meanwhile, the controversy spread to Taiwan - possibly reflecting concerns there about an influx of mainlanders similar to those experienced in Hong Kong.

News about the suggestion of the "pee and poo" protest went viral on Taiwan media outlets.

Back across the strait, the top post on popular mainland forum Tianya.cn featured a mainlander who claimed to be working in Hong Kong.

"Are [the Hong Kong people] psycho?" one user, who went by the name Round Face Tomato Ghost Devil, quoted her Spanish friend as asking.

The comment was widely echoed by other mainlanders. "People should help people in need, not take photos and post them online," wrote one.

In the video, the mother was seen telling the crowd of onlookers: "The child was going to pee in his pants, what do you want me do?"

A scuffle then broke out and the parents tried to take the memory card from the camera of the young man filming the incident. State media had earlier criticised those who took the pictures as being as uncivilised as the toddler's parents.

A commentary in the People's Daily overseas edition questioned whether the bystanders had acted properly, while saying there was a need for "mutual civilisation and understanding" between tourists and Hongkongers.

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chaz_hen
Question is, why is it mainland kids are always caught urinating or defecating in very public areas in front of so many people? How come there are not instances of outrage and exposure on Japanese kids, American kids, Canadian kids, Filipino kids, or Indian kids doing the same in HK streets??
This tells me mainland parents are pretty p*iss poor at planning, too lazy to find proper toilets, and generally mediocre parents that don't control their kids very well.
As far as this coddling of little children by allowing them to relieve themselves wherever and whenever they want, well that's an aspect of mainland culture they'd be better off discarding, right?
Carparklee
Isn't there internet police in the mainland China? The person who claimed to be leading tourists from the mainland to 'urinate' Hong Kong should be regarded as someone who is organising crime activities in neighbouring city. Police in the mainland should arrest that person.
jtang@iht.com
Just one word: Diapers. They cost HK $3 each.
daily
The mainlanders just keep degrading themselves more and more and more everyday............disgusting.
cleareye
I hope we Hong Konger one day would realize how short-fused we can be. The parents were apparently presented with an uncompromising situation by their child. They may have even broken the law in that extenuating circumstances but still had to act. The video and various photos did show that the mother was cleaning after her child. I am sure she was not overly happy with her child's emergency either. Whilst we can tolerate people walking their dogs that urinate and defecate on our streets (most cleaning up the poos,) we cannot offer an iota of understanding with a toddler at a time in need. Can we really say we are better than them? Let's turn to the photographer. It is apparent that he was not a professional news reporter and dreamily excited about his video that could be possibly awarded with many "likes" and "clicks" on his upload onto the Internet, without being aware that there could be laws against recording a child's private parts, without the parents' permission, and may be deemed as child pornography. Can we turn the silly page and move on?
pkwumo
I think it's time the silent majority spoke out against such distasteful treatment of tourists (it's irrelevant where they are from). Yes, urinating in public is bad, but come on, this was a young child. Mong Kok is a terrible place to have an unsettled child desperate for the toilet. Why did no-one offer to help ? Or at least direct them to a quiet side street ? I also noticed the mother did try to limit the flow on to the street. And which parent wouldn't get offended when somone starts filming their child in public like that, especially when they are crying their eyes out ? Yes, so many tourists can make life difficult at times, people shouldn't lose all sense of basic human decency, but should offer to help parents like that in those circumstances, instead of slating them in public.
chaz_hen
You really need to stop looking for drunk western men urinating in Wanchai at night in alleys. Or is this a perverse hobby of yours?
I think the point is, the mainlanders and their kids do their "business" in broad daylight, in front of masses of people, and in very public thoroughfares.
lastinspace
Just some basic thoughts...
1. HK is lacking a number of public bathrooms as the ground floor space is extremely precious. Its just not worthy investment. Louis Vuitton vs. public toilet? What makes more money?
2. They are young parents, and a lot these things is just basically a learning experience for them.
3. A tourist in Mong Kok - can you imagine being there first time? Its very intimidating. Hundreds of people are everywhere... Imagining you want to take your kid to a toilet, you probably think that the queues to the toilet must be insane... On top of it as a tourist, you are generally lost MOST THE TIME. I hate to ask for directions, but that's how most people are.
4. You can not be angry at people who are ignorant. Help them.
Just some common understanding wouldn't hurt.
ejychan@connect.hku.hk
Contrary to the comments on Chinese social media, the self-righteous ones aren't the Hong Kong locals. The self-righteous are the ones from across the border, deluded with the belief that they somehow have the right to impose their unhygienic customs on other cities and nations. Hong Kong is indeed a part of China - but it's sad to see that instead of learning from the positive practices of the city (not limited to public hygiene and cleanliness), some individuals feel as if they must literally "mark their territory" to show who's in control.
impala
Oh please, yes, do come and bring all yer urinating children.

If we can thus fine every visiting mainlander HKD 2,000, then we will 'finally' see some benefit for the public purse from this tourism.

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