Letters to the Editor, November 21, 2015
Success must mean more than money
I refer to the article, "You don't have to wear a suit to be a success" (November 13). I agree with the writer's point of view that skills in creating and working with actual things are a sign of success.
Hong Kong people always think that one could be called a success only if one is as rich as Li Ka-shing. Nevertheless, it is nearly impossible for young people to be successful in the business and finance sectors in the same way.
Working in these sectors these days is like playing in a half-done Monopoly game: most resources have already been occupied. Young people can easily "land" on other people's properties.
They may also draw an advantageous "Chance" card, but this rarely happens in reality.
This is why we won't see another Li Ka-shing from the younger generations. The economic environment now is not as favourable as in the past.
But being successful means much more than being rich. For example, a football coach who has led his team with vision, would he be considered successful? I believe no one would deny that the Hong Kong football team coach Kim Pan-gon - or "Kim Sir" as he's popularly known - is a successful coach. It's not for nothing fans like to say, "In Kim we trust".
The Fifa World Cup qualifying matches have brought the Hong Kong people together and strengthened our sense of identity. A main reason for that is the performance and attitude our footballers show on the field. In the match against Qatar, despite a 0-3 deficit, the Hong Kong team never gave up and managed to nab two goals in the last eight minutes.
Although Hong Kong lost the match eventually, their fighting spirit is a reminder that one should never give up on miracles.
Kim Sir played an important role in that. He brought enthusiasm to the team, and it has spread to other Hong Kong people as well. He may not have a high salary or fame as his team members do, but his influence makes him a success.
We should not limit success to economic achievements only. The marks you leave on the world and other people's hearts are the more important criteria of success.
Shek On Man, Sai Kung
Minorities in India are well treated
Kevin Rafferty calls Hindu reformists thugs ("India can't let extremism hold back progress", November 12), and this reminds me of the colonial days in India when Hindu martyrs were labelled terrorists. For over 200 years, Muslims and Christian missionaries converted poor and gullible Hindus to their religions. The truth is, Hindu reformists want this conversion stopped.
Muslims, Christians and other minorities in India enjoy all the rights and are treated equally as first-class citizens. Voluntary sterilisation in India started decades back to check population growth; there is nothing wrong if Hindu reformists approach minorities for sterilisation on a voluntary basis.
All Indians, including minorities, have freedom of religion. To say churches are asked to replace the image of Christ with Hindu idols is preposterous, as no state government will allow such extremism.
The killing of a Muslim labourer for eating beef is sad, and the killing must be condemned. I note that some Muslim countries do not allow the consumption of pork. Hindus believe cows are sacred and they want to protect cows.
Like any other country, India, too, has some organisations that sometimes use force in their treatment of minorities.
Kevin Rafferty should at least visit our movie industry, and he will see how Hindus, Muslims, Christians and other minorities work in peace and are united like members of one family.
Ranjit Bhawnani, Tsim Sha Tsui
Standing one's ground isn't real debate
In my observation, although Hong Kong has been immersed in all kinds of arguments, there has been no real debate. Real debate is not only about speaking in a firm tone and forceful manner, but it involves deep reflection.
People with different political views are arguing with each other but they do not debate. They only state their own stance again and again, without new points or elaboration. I do not think people understand the meaning of debate or its importance.
As a debater in secondary school, I am sad to see debate happening only in schools but not in the public sphere. Perhaps the lack of promotion of what debate is about is to blame.
Debate sharpens minds. Requiring someone to prove their argument or rebuttal is important. It's hardly enough for that person to restate the information he or she has. Such an argument is not convincing. But I see many politicians arguing this way.
If people were to engage in real debate, their mindsets may change and some meaningless conflicts can be avoided. The entire society will learn to think and make wiser decisions.
Bella Chu, Ma On Shan
Handouts won't satisfy residents
I appreciate that Dr Fernando Chui Sai-on, the chief executive of Macau SAR, has pledged to continue handing out a subsidy of 9,000 patacas to each permanent resident of Macau, including those who are living in Hong Kong, in his latest policy address ("Gaming collapse won't affect livelihoods: Chui", November 18).
The cash-sharing scheme seems to be the main theme of the policy address in Macau. Some 11.7 billion patacas will be spent on this cash-sharing scheme.
The government appears to be using these subsidies to prevent street protests. This is similar to mainland China, where the government promotes economic development to try and head off protests against the government.
These subsidies may not satisfy Macau residents, who have urged their leaders to improve public housing, protect the rights of workers and safeguard democracy.
I hope the Macau government is listening.
Felix Mak Hoi-kuoh, Kowloon Bay
Voters' privacy must be safeguarded
In one of his emails to voters, a Democratic Party nominee for this Sunday's district council elections, Frankie Lam Siu-chung, did not take the necessary steps to protect voter identity, and all of our names and email addresses were listed for all to see. This is unacceptable.
Lam is not a new hand at using the internet or sending email to voters. He has been a district councillor for years. This is careless behaviour and shows he does not respect voters' privacy.
Let other nominees take this as a lesson. They should not make the same mistake.
L. Chiang, Tseung Kwan O
Get rid of needless MTR broadcasts
Every day I use the MTR and every day I am subjected to a barrage of obtrusive, irrelevant and relentless announcements which only serve to annoy and to which nobody pays the slightest attention. Less is sometimes more in the announcing world; the relentless announcements about nothing in particular will more likely lead to people missing something which is actually useful.
There were a total of 42 announcements on stations and trains on my 30-minute, HK$11.60 commute from Causeway Bay to Kowloon Bay one morning. Are the MTR fares being charged by the announcement these days?
At Kowloon Bay and no doubt other stations, there are now extra people with loudhailers for people to ignore too. If we get rid of all of the announcers, announcements and the entire announcing crew - there must be an entire floor of MTR headquarters and a budget of millions devoted to this - can the fares be reduced by 50 per cent? Nobody listens anyway.
Now I know why people wear headphones on the MTR. Time to get mine out.
Derek Small, Ap Lei Chau
Use cameras to catch idling cars in action
The problem of pollution caused by cars parking illegally, or better say "standing" illegally with the engine on, in Central and Tsim Sha Tsui during rush hours seems to be getting worse, not better. The police could solve the problem easily by mounting a camera on some of their cars and taking photos during the time of day when such behaviour is rampant.
No one could contest the legality of a picture showing the offender's car plate, time and place.
The money thus collected could be then used to finance low-income families and the needy.
Angelo Paratico, Sheung Wan