Kevin Kung, 15 Ying Wa College No, I think the government should continue to allow charities to hand out rice as it is an old Chinese tradition. The handouts, which take place every year in the seventh month of the lunar calendar, are not just aimed at helping those in poverty, they are also meant to keep people safe during the Hungry Ghost Festival. We have seen a lot of news about the rice handouts over the past few weeks. Most of the coverage has concentrated on the negative consequences of the handouts with headlines like 'Tragedy in Hong Kong' and 'Peace rice led to the old woman's death'. There are no photographs of the happy faces of the elderly when they received bags of rice. I believe that there are a number of ways to prevent accidents from occurring again. For example, the charities organising the handouts could offer indoor waiting areas. Community centres are ideal as they are air-conditioned so people don't suffer in hot weather. Also, they could have more volunteers on hand to control the crowds and help any old or frail people in the queue. It's not just old people who queue for the peace rice; adults, youngsters and children also do. The government should therefore educate all of Hong Kong's citizens, and tell them to follow the instructions of workers and police at any big event. If you have a problem, what do you do? You find a solution. Trying to find solutions to the problems associated with rice handouts is much better than just banning the events altogether. Annie Tai, 16, Shung Tak Catholic English College Yes, I think the government should stop the rice handouts because they should not allow senior citizens to suffer. Handing out rice in open areas where the elderly have to queue should be banned. Every year, at the Ullambana Festival, charities give away 'safe and well' rice, but old people have to line up in order to get good fortune and blessings from God. As a result, the elderly often have to wait for a long time in crowded spaces and sometimes they are exposed to the sun and the rain. Occasionally, this is fatal. On September 2 this year, 82-year-old Cheung Yee left her house in Lam Tin to queue for a 5kg bag of rice in Tsim Sha Tsui. Things were chaotic at the venue. People pushed and shoved. Cheung stumbled. She had a heart attack and passed away. Her death can teach us a few lessons. Life ranks above everything else, and the practice of tradition should be flexible. It is essential for the government and charities to ensure the safety of our senior citizens. To prevent tragedies from happening again, charities should assign staff and volunteers to deliver rice to the needy, rather than expecting them to queue up for it. Love and care should be expressed with consideration. I am sure that God does not expect human beings to be tortured for the sake of rice.