Poor Albert Ho Chun-yan. The Democrat and one-time chief executive candidate drew a lot of flak for looking at girly pictures on his iPad during the annual budget speech by the financial secretary.
Many critics have denounced his behaviour as inappropriate. Some people even said he should resign as a lawmaker.
Well, it is kind of improper to be looking at photos of bikini-clad ladies while conducting the people's business in our august legislative chamber. It is, after all, the kind of place where our representatives released balloons, threw objects at officials and routinely interrupted meetings. Ho did it for 10 minutes, and was interrupted briefly by fellow pan-democrat lawmaker Cyd Ho Sau-lan who leaned over for a chat. She didn't see what he was looking at, or pretended not to anyway.
What kind of example is Albert Ho setting for our youngsters? Surely a bad one!
Next time some kid is caught looking at porn, he could say even one of our most senior lawmakers and democracy fighters looked at it, and in public too.
Ho has now apologised and promised never to do it again. When asked if he had looked at similar pictures before, he said: "I can't say I have not. But today, in this [official] setting, it was not appropriate."
Well, at least he wasn't looking at hardcore porn. Actually, it wasn't even softcore. You get raunchier pictures in Apple Daily on any day of the week.
In mitigation, he was having to sit through two hours of finance chief John Tsang Chun-wah reading through his budget.
You try doing that. Your mind quickly goes into a stupor, so looking at photos of scantily clad models could have actually helped Ho stay awake and alert.
In any case, the incident makes Ho more human. Besides looking at the naughty pictures, he was also copying by hand a beautiful poem from The Midnight Song by the great poet and emperor Li Hou Zhu, who lost his late Tang kingdom to the Song dynasty. And lying beside his iPad was a long paper on the conflicting economic philosophies of Milton Friedman and John Maynard Keynes. So here's a man who clearly has a curious mind and a thirst for knowledge and beauty.
Well, you can have someone far worse than that for a lawmaker.