ESWN’s Roland appears to be confused once more. This time it is about HK democracy.
The Unanswered Question about Hong Kong numbers
Yet, when the call went out for the people of Hong Kong to march for universal suffrage, not more than 5,000 people showed up. There is an obvious problem here, but nobody seems to want to confront it honestly…
So maybe these comments will generate the usual criticisms that I hate democracy and freedom. But what is your explanation as to why 5,000 people showed up for the march when public opinion polls showed that 60% of the population are for universal suffrage? If you can solve that puzzle, then you will get 60% of 7 million people = 4.2 million people to march for universal suffrage. How can that sort of people power be stopped?
It seems like quite an easy answer to me. Hong Kong people have indicated – quite consistently through polls – that they want universal suffrage. However they probably do not believe that protesting about it will make much of a difference. It’s all very well that saying getting 4+ million people on the streets “cannot be stopped”, but then again when did Hong Kong ever get 4+ million people on the streets? The UK managed much less than that in protests against the war in Iraq (Police said 750,000 – organisers said 2 million), despite the fact we have a population of over 60 million and there was generally a lot of opposition to the war.
Let’s take a figure of 1.5 million (quite generous) for the number that marched. That would be 2.5% of the population. So according to Roland’s logic, why did only 2.5% protest if so many opposed it?
The answer is that people can feel very strongly on an issue yet not believe their time is best spent protesting about something. Governments regularly ignore such protests even when they have to face the public at the ballot boxes. Neither Hong Kong’s government nor the Beijing administration have to worry about being voted out of office, so why would they take notice of what was going on? Past pro-democracy marches in Hong Kong have been far larger, yet they have not changed anything. So why waste your time when such a march will still not achieve anything?
So, Roland, the answer is that you will have millions of people joining the pro-democracy march when they believe it will actually result in universal suffrage. However they know all too well that at the moment, Beijing and the HK business mandarins will block any change regardless of what they do on the streets. That doesn’t mean they are satisfied with the status-quo in any way. Also, and I’m surprised Roland didn’t pick up on this, the general support for Donald Tsang means that there is not the ground-swell of opposition to him that led to increased numbers of people marching while Tung Chee-Hua was in charge.
Tell you what, Roland, why not focus on the translating and leave the commentary to us?
Oh, one more thing.
So maybe these comments will generate the usual criticisms that I hate democracy and freedom.
Roland, did you ever consider that your thinly-veiled hostility towards democracy in HK and constant attempts to undermine it is the source of such comments? If you do actually believe in HK democracy (i.e. the end of the functional constituencies, 1 vote per person and only direct elections) maybe you could actually show that – just for once.
It’s an idea, anyway.