Hong Kong localism and independence

Hong Kong has the democracy the Basic Law requires, localists have no case

  • Freedoms are not without limit. Promoting independence is not the exercising of freedom of expression, it is way over the line
PUBLISHED : Wednesday, 28 November, 2018, 12:58pm
UPDATED : Wednesday, 28 November, 2018, 12:58pm

As long as we have university students, like your correspondent Henry Wong, believing in the false argument that “Beijing may not loosen its grip despite trust” (November 16), and as long as the Hong Kong government does nothing to refute it, Beijing will remain understandably concerned that Hong Kong might become like Taiwan, with many voices advocating moving towards separatism.

What was meant when Mr Wong mentioned “full democracy and freedoms”? If by “full democracy” he meant direct elections, forget it – never the mind tightening or loosening of Beijing’s grip – for it will lead to separatism.

The Basic Law has promised universal suffrage by way of indirect elections (which is also practised in the US), which we are already practising. We have not been “short-changed” by Beijing, as some pan-democrats continue to claim we have been.

Promote benefits of integration with mainland

Freedoms are not without limit. Promoting independence as Andy Chan Ho-tin of the Hong Kong National Party so blatantly did, as did Financial Times Asia news editor Victor Mallet in providing the Foreign Correspondents’ Club forum to him, is not the exercising of freedom of expression. It is way over the line.

So we should be wary of trying to be “in” with the West by being paranoid about communism. As far as China is concerned, it is the communist government that has pulled it back up on its feet. Anyway, as North and South Korea are moving towards unification, who knows if Taiwan and the mainland might not find a formula to do the same (“Chinese media claim Taiwan leader’s ‘separatist stance’ led to heavy losses”, November 26)?

Peter Lok, Heng Fa Chuen