America is a democracy while Hong Kong is not. But I wonder whether an average resident in San Francisco enjoys more freedom than an average person in Hong Kong. I pick San Francisco because California’s 12th congressional district falls within the city and is represented by Nancy Pelosi, the US House speaker. She has been pushing for a bipartisan bill in defence of freedom and democracy in Hong Kong, which includes provisions to impose sanctions on Hong Kong officials. I am all for punishing officials for misdeeds; I just don’t see how that’s any business of Americans. Pelosi can’t even take care of the poor, sick, and homeless in her wealthy city; what makes her think she is qualified to tell us how to run ours? The dire homeless situation in San Francisco has become a caricature of extreme inequality in the United States. It jumped by about 30 per cent from 2017, amounting to almost 10,000 homeless persons, according to official figures. The riches generated at Silicon Valley, in the San Francisco Bay Area – just like the wealth made by our property tycoons – have pushed home prices sky-high, making housing all but unaffordable to most people. China tells US politicians to stop ‘interfering’ in Hong Kong As for civil liberty, how long do you think a protester can survive by throwing petrol bombs at San Francisco police? Three months or three minutes? How long do you think he can occupy San Francisco International Airport before being arrested, without significant injuries while resisting? An Australian tourist wrote about San Francisco in Reddit last June: “Is this normal? Just walked past numerous homeless … screaming and running all over the sidewalk and then a murder scene. Wife is scared to leave hotel.” How Asia sees Lam’s extradition bill withdrawal: ‘It’s welcome, but …’ A visitor from London wrote: “I’d been there for less than a day … and already seen more than enough poverty and suffering to cause me wanting to leave desperately. I saw many people talking to themselves, or to things that weren’t there … There weren’t any police officers to help them.” The president of the San Francisco Travel Association told the San Francisco Chronicle last April: “The streets are filthy. There’s trash everywhere. It’s disgusting. I’ve never seen any other city like this – the homelessness, dirty streets, drug use on the streets, smash-and-grabs.” In the same article, the executive director of the Hotel Council of San Francisco said: “You see things on the streets that are just not humane.” Nancy, try taking care of your city first!