Hong Kong youth’s interest in politics is welcome, but education comes first
I refer to the increased incidents of Hong Kong youth getting involved in political issues in recent years. As a Form Five student, I realise that many of my peers today take a keen interest in politics and are actively involved in many related activities, ranging from leaving political comments on Facebook to joining different forms of protest.
I support the younger generation being involved in matters of civic interest. Firstly, it reflects their aspirations and ideals. Secondly, it allows more voices to be heard by the government. Thirdly, it nurtures talent in the political field. And, most importantly, it helps the democratisation process and the socioeconomic and political development of the city.
However, students should understand that education comes first. That is the way they can gain basic knowledge and values, on being good citizens, fair play, honesty, consideration for others, a sense of right and wrong, and so on. An over-politicised society can make some of them unaware of this responsibility. Some teenagers spend most of their time exploring politics while some might even drop out of school to become activists. Some youngsters may lack the maturity to make objective and rational decisions when forming their political stance and expressing their views.
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It is the nature of youth to want to bring change to the community. However, the first thing to consider is whether they have done their bit as students. They should recognise that they are still in the developmental stage and need to have an open attitude towards different viewpoints on social issues, so that they can benefit from the process. They should never do anything rash, as that will only lead to undesirable consequences for their irresponsible behaviour.
If those who participate in political affairs remain rational and law-abiding, I am confident that together we can make Hong Kong more stable, harmonious, and prosperous.
Norman Wan, Aberdeen