Letters to the Editor, October 3, 2017
E-books can lighten load for young pupils
Having to carry overweight bags to and from school is a serious problem for many young students. For those at primary level, this can have adverse health consequences, such as damaging their spines and affecting their posture.
The Education Bureau must admit it has failed to address this problem and try to deal with it effectively, in order to protect the health of our young children.
All primary and secondary schools must provide storage lockers. Students have to carry a lot of textbooks and notebooks, especially if they have homework, and extracurricular activities after school. With lockers, they can leave behind the books that they will not need until the following school day and this will lighten the load they carry.
I also believe that schools must expand the use of electronic books. The content of these e-books can be stored in computers such as tablets, which are far lighter to carry and much more convenient.
However, I do accept that extensive use of e-books can cause eye strain, so traditional textbooks will still be relevant for some classes.
By getting the right balance, schools and the bureau can protect the health of students and ensure that they carry lighter bags to and from school.
Mandy Hui Kei-tung, Po Lam
Trump should try to fight racism in US
I do not think US President Donald Trump’s response to the protest by National Football League (NFL) players during the national anthem is helpful.
He also withdrew an invitation to the White House for the top basketball team, the Golden State Warriors, and their star player Stephen Curry who was critical of Trump.
The NFL players have been kneeling to protest about racial injustice in America.
I think Trump’s critical response will deepen divisions between some white and back people in the country.
The fact that the NFL players have felt the need to hold these protests shows that America still has problems with regard to racism and there is no point denying this. Trump should recognise there is a problem and try to find effective policies to address this.
His government should be trying harder to tackle racial injustice, and using education to try and change some biased attitudes, so that the next generation can grow up with a more tolerant outlook.
Cherry Li Wing-lam, Yau Yat Chuen
New initiative will not solve housing woes
A shortage of decent, affordable housing is one of the biggest problems we face in Hong Kong.
The Hong Kong Council of Social Service is trying to help, with its recently launched initiative called the Community Housing Movement.
This scheme aims to provide transitional accommodation for about 1,000 families living in substandard conditions and who are in the long queue for a public housing flat.
This initiative will obviously be of help to some people, but it fails to get to the root of the housing problem in Hong Kong.
As at end of June, there were about 150,200 general applications for public rental housing. So being able to help out 1,000 families is a drop in the ocean.
The plan does not address fundamental problems, such as the shortage of affordable flats and the high price of private housing.
Until these root problems are effectively dealt with, Hong Kong’s housing woes will remain unresolved.
A lot more can be achieved by, for example, renovating the many empty old buildings in urban areas.
We also must have tighter restrictions on non-Hong Kong residents seeking to purchase flats here.
Kenny Tong, Tseung Kwan O
Being offensive on democracy wall is abuse
There have been heated debates about the pro-independence banners or posters put up on democracy walls in the campuses of local universities.
Some people argue that students should be allowed to post whatever they want on these walls, while others say that some comments are unacceptable and people putting up posters must act responsibly.
I agree with the latter view, because tasteless and offensive comments can damage an institution’s reputation.
I do not think these walls should contain personal abuse against individuals, including senior government officials.
Part of the problem is that those overseeing these walls have not managed them properly, and this has led to confrontations between people with differing political views, including mainland students.
The walls need to be well managed, so that differing views are allowed to be entertained.
I believe that many people in the city would like Hong Kong to go back to being a more harmonious society.
Kris Lam Ka-wai, Kowloon Tong
Taiwan enjoys cleaner air, but think twice
I can understand why more Hong Kong citizens are relocating to Taiwan (“Why are so many Hongkongers moving to Taiwan?”, October 1).
I think Hongkongers find people a lot friendlier in Taiwan, especially in the service sector, where they are enthusiastic about their jobs.
Also, the island has a cleaner environment. Hong Kong is crowded and the air does not circulate in urban streets lined with a lot of high-rises.
However, the value of the currency is lower than the Hong Kong dollar, and so Hongkongers should think carefully before moving, and ask themselves if they will really be better off.
Sharon Lai Cheuk-wing, Tseung Kwan O