My Take

Keep ‘one country’ intact to enjoy the benefits of ‘two systems’

It’s not the central government that’s threatening the formula that has kept Hong Kong viable; rather it’s those advocating for independence

PUBLISHED : Sunday, 30 April, 2017, 11:50pm
UPDATED : Sunday, 30 April, 2017, 11:50pm

Talk about scrapping the “one country, two systems” formula may sound a bit extreme. But it’s no worse than openly advocating independence for Hong Kong.

With few exceptions, virtually all the mainstream pan-democrats and localists have, in recent years, failed to speak out against those agitating for secession. Instead, many are aiding and abetting the secessionists or making up excuses for them. 

When you deliberately wave a red flag in front of a raging bull, you should not complain if you get crushed. Even a child knows independence is the red line for the central government. 

The pan-democrats, having helped make it a viable political movement, have done Hong Kong and its people a great disservice. 

The worst epithets have been thrown at Wang Zhenmin, the legal chief of the central government’s liaison office, who sounded the warning about “one country, two systems” at the weekend. 
Well, you can shoot the messenger, but he is merely stating the obvious. 

“If the ‘two systems’ part ... is severely distorted or even [becomes a tool] to confront and damage ‘one country’, then the reasons and conditions for the ‘two systems’ to exist would be lost,” Wang said. “If it fails, the country will only lose face, but Hong Kong will lose everything.”

A pact like the “one country, two systems” principle is not something that is set in stone. Even the Bible or the Koran has to be read in the context of the 21st century. There needs to be constant adjustments in the behaviour and understanding on both sides to march with rapidly changing times and conditions. 

The innovative political principle was conceived at a time when Hong Kong played a much larger role in the nation’s economic rise. The positions of strength have been fundamentally reversed in the past two decades since the city’s return to Chinese sovereignty. 

Like it or not, Hong Kong must stand with the rest of China or it will be nothing. 

Unfortunately, many idealistic and self-righteous people refuse to accept this fundamental reality. They have what you may call their own alternative reality, something they think they can achieve just because they wish it.

It’s not too late for the pan-dems to do the right thing. Declare your commitment to “one country” as much as to “two systems”. Oppose anyone who agitates for independence or secession. 
Remember: the road to hell is paved with good intentions.