I guess I am not the only Hongkonger enraged by police actions on May 10 across the city. A day with a rare chance for a family reunion dedicated to mothers ended in chaos, fear and rage (“ Mother’s Day protests see 230 arrested, as journalists accuse police of thwarting work ”, May 12). What justified police officers pointing guns at citizens singing in shopping malls, firing pepper bombs in a packed food court, pressing citizens, even kids, on the floor with a knee on their necks, intimidating student reporters and, worst of all, stopping journalists from reporting or taking photos of what was happening? What had these people done? Who was actually disrupting public order and threatening public safety? The force has been blatantly violating the Basic Law. Article 27 states that “Hong Kong residents shall have freedom of speech, of the press and of publication”. If the force had done nothing wrong or illegal, why shut up the mouths and cameras of the journalists with pepper spray? Such actions are nothing but barbaric and authoritarian. Under no circumstances should officers abuse their right to enforce social distancing rules by prosecuting citizens while randomly packing together four or now eight strangers, and then claiming they violated the rules. This is absurd and totally unacceptable. If that is not abuse of power, what is? When hundreds of officers storm shopping malls and areas where no violation of the law is seen, their action is completely unjustified, provocative and infuriating. Any action seemingly against the force is arbitrarily judged to be offensive and subject to prosecution and arrest, while freedom of the press is pushed aside, with reporters intimidated and stamped on. Which is the deadlier weapon, a gun or a camera? If they want to restore peace and order, never mind remedy long-worsening public relations, or simply save face or dignity for themselves when scandals over suspected drugs-related crime or alleged illegal structures spread, they should not add fuel to the fire any more. If power abuse and violence are their only tactics, they are destined to fail. Helen Lo, Lai Chi Kok Help us understand what you are interested in so that we can improve SCMP and provide a better experience for you. We would like to invite you to take this five-minute survey on how you engage with SCMP and the news.