Letters to the Editor, June 27, 2015
Unimpressed by calibre of lawmakers
The current political crisis in Hong Kong seems focused only on issues such as nominating and voting.
Granted, they are important. However, there seems to be a bigger crisis. A government is only as good as its participants, the constituents and their representatives. Let's consider the latter, and, in particular, the legislature.
First of all, no one seems to know what "quorum" means or how it works; it's a concept that anyone who has attended proper meetings of organised groups or a basic political science course knows.
Second, we have a possible chief executive candidate disavowing any responsibility, claiming to have just followed the others blindly.
Third, we have a representative of a large and powerful constituency arriving late. This constituency comprises once ordinary citizens, but now mostly landowners and speculators who control what they claim is their cultural right. He was late due to illness, but yet well enough to come to vote on the most important political legislation to date.
So, even if we citizens of Hong Kong get the nominating and/or voting rights, whom do we vote for?
This is the biggest question, and there seems to be no answer among the available representatives and possible chief executive candidates.
We desperately need the help of the younger generation. Please take up open-minded, knowledgeable, logical and humanist politics and bail us all out.
Neil Bailey, North Point
It's not only expats who need manners
I agree with Kathy Lo, who wrote about expatriates kicking the back of a taxi ("Appalled by behaviour of rude expats", June 24). Such a show of anger is appalling.
However, this episode of bad behaviour also demonstrates the "me first" mentality.
In another international city, a local would perhaps have tried to help the gentlemen out by explaining to the taxi driver where they wanted to go. Instead, your correspondent and her sister seem to have taken immediate advantage of the situation by hopping into the taxi in their place, and saw nothing wrong in doing so.
True, people should show respect to taxi drivers. Some are very kind and some deliberately refuse to take anyone disabled anywhere, have dodgy meters that overcharge, or try to take you on a longer ride than necessary. It's the luck of the draw, but offensive behaviour is never acceptable. Acting like a hooligan and queue jumping are bad manners.
As Fred Astaire said: "The hardest job kids face today is learning good manners without seeing any."
Joan Miyaoka, Sha Tin
Hongkongers' artistry can be seen all over
Hong Kong has a vibrant arts scene, and a lot of artwork is accessible to the public.
These works are a symbol of the city's history and culture. They are relevant to all of us.
Also, many citizens are involved in creating art in different forms and at varied venues. For example, during the occupation of Central by the pro-democracy activists, someone made an original display using yellow umbrellas, the symbol of Occupy Central. It was an expression of the spirit of the movement and an act of creativity inspired by a historical event in Hong Kong, one that affected all citizens.
There are also people who like to paint scenes from the daily lives of residents, or to portray views of the city. They become records of Hong Kong's history and can be seen here and in art galleries round the world.
Vivian Tang, Tseung Kwan O
A nod to otherHong Kongsoccer greats
You described Wu Kwok-hung, who died on June 15, as "arguably the city's best-ever player" to emerge from the local football scene ("Head boy forever", June 16).
Without wishing to take anything away from Wu, I believe that others like me regard South China's classy inside-left Yiu Cheuk-yin as perhaps the greatest footballer ever to grace Hong Kong's soccer world.
Yiu played for South China throughout the 1950s and formed their attacking trio known to fans as "the Three Aces" with Ho Cheung-yau and Mok Chun-wah. Yiu was so good that, at one time, he was linked with a possible move to Sporting in Portugal. When he left Caroline Hill for Henry Fok Ying-tung's Tung Sing in 1960, South China fans were heartbroken.
Two other players will be considered by many as Hong Kong's best-ever footballer. Lee Wai-tong played for South China in the 1930s and 1940s, and was called "soccer king" by adoring admirers.
Stocky Cheung Chi-doy was the first local boy to play professionally in Europe when he joined Blackpool in 1959. On his return home, he matured into a lethal striker for Sing Tao and the glamour club, Jardine, in the 1960s and 1970s.
When he relocated to Canada, he continued to play professional football with the Vancouver Royals.
K. Y. Tsui, Lai Chi Kok
Remembering Wu's skill and dedication
Peter Olsen's letter ("Wu was city's finest-ever football player", June 20), about Wu Kwok-hung, brought back fond memories of when I was in secondary school in the 1970s.
Wu was my football idol, and whenever Seiko had an evening practice session, I went to see him if I was free. He quietly focused on the football; that is why he could always send Derek Currie a deadly straight pass and the goalkeeper could only pick up the ball from the back of the net.
He was lucky because his profession was also his personal interest, and he had a strategy which enabled him to concentrate hard on his playing. Over time, he developed a lot of ball-control skills.
After finishing his playing career, he should have gone into club management. However, he chose instead to become a businessman.
It was a great loss to Hong Kong football.
Pang Chi-ming, Fanling
Local work hours should copy Europe's
I would like to see Hong Kong people working shorter hours.
At present, so many Hongkongers are forced to work long hours, sometimes staying in the office until late at night.
When they have such impossible workloads, many of them suffer from stress. They feel less motivated and this affects a company's productivity.
In European countries, having shorter working hours actually increases efficiency. I would like to see Hong Kong employees being able to have a shorter working week, and I think eight hours a day would be fair.
Gaston Lau, Tsuen Wan
It's a pit the working poor can't escape
I am concerned about the problem of the working poor in Hong Kong.
This term is generally applied to youngsters who work long hours but only receive wages that barely meet their daily expenses.
There are working poor even in developed societies such as Hong Kong and Germany.
I believe this has become a serious problem in Hong Kong, where even some university graduates consider themselves in this wage category and expect it will take a number of years before they can escape from it. The government needs to recognise this is a problem and act swiftly to address it.
In the 1970s, everyone who worked hard in this city had the chance to progress to higher standards of living.
However, as Hong Kong has become richer, the number of working poor has soared. Their working hours are not proportional to the salaries they receive. As a consequence, the gap between rich and poor is growing. There are fewer opportunities now for people on low incomes to climb out of poverty.
Clearly the government's social welfare policies are flawed; they are certainly not comprehensive. People on low incomes have made important contributions to society, but they have not benefited even though society has progressed.
The government must take action to tackle the problem.
Ashley Chung, Kwun Tong
Organ donors give others a chance at life
I applaud all those people who have signed up as organ donors with the Centralised Organ Donation Register, and I hope more people will do the same.
Many organs and tissues can be donated after death, such as kidneys, liver, heart, lungs, corneas, bone and skin. The register means medical personnel know that this person has given signed consent for their organs to be harvested.
Unfortunately, some families will still not allow the organs to be used for transplants, because they are not satisfied that the deceased relative really intended this.
When this happens, it is a wasted opportunity to save lives. Family members should respect the decision of that relative to register as a donor. They should see it as a meaningful act intended to give others a second chance at life.
Many patients are still waiting for organ transplants, and some run out of time and die before an organ becomes available. More people should understand the importance of voluntary organ donation, and sign up to the register.
Most importantly, they should inform their family members that they have done this. After their death, their wishes must be respected.
Wong Tsz-Miu, Yau Yat Chuen