Hong Kong’s ethnic minorities can fit in without losing own culture
- Wherever you live, the locals are always appreciative when minorities make the effort to understand their ways
I refer to “Don’t ask Hong Kong’s ethnic minorities to fit the Chinese mould” (January 13). In response I'd like to say I agree with the sentiment, it is a two-way street – but with two lanes one way and one the other.
There are more Chinese – Hong Kong Chinese – in the city than ethnic minorities, so we (I’m Eurasian) need to take the first steps. Local people admire anyone not Chinese taking the trouble to learn the language, not only speaking but reading and writing. Know the culture, understand behaviours; in short, fit in.
You can fit into a foreign culture without losing your own culture. Me? I follow both and, while strangers might take me for a foreigner, I easily find acceptance once the ice is broken.
Local people and people the world over generally will make an effort to accommodate foreigners, especially if one makes an effort to “join in”. I've always encouraged those from the minorities to immerse themselves in the local language and use it to guide the locals into their culture.
Friendship can only be exchanged but it cannot be done successfully without communication. Ms Fariha Salma Deiya Bakar made a good choice and she has my blessing. It will be a long hard struggle, uphill all the way – against the odds. She has one supporter: me. Courage and fortitude will see her through. Keep going young lady. God bless.
James A Elms, Happy Valley