Sunday, February 05, 2012

A Reply to Minna Ho

The Locust Ads
First, I do not agree using 'locust' to pinpoint Mainlanders. According to the Oxford Dictionary, 'locust' refers to ' a large, mainly tropical grasshopper with strong powers of flight. It is usually solitary, but from time to time there is a population explosion and it migrates in vast swarms which cause extensive damage to vegetation.'

From this definition, I do not find it inappropriate to use 'locust' in a metaphorical sense to describe any person or any group of people that 'enter' into a territory for the purpose of scraping off the domestic welfare, causing extensive damage to the local population. It seems obvious 'double non' pregnant women and children fall within this definition. 

Second, I didn't pick on Minna Ho's article because of any personal hostility to her. On the contrary, it is precisely because her article is so well - written and so convincing that compels me to write this reply, in spite of my very amateurish understanding of politics and laws. (her article is available here)

In essence, her argument may be summed up in the following ways: 
  1. The historical background behind the Basic Law and Article 24 has given the lawful right of abode to all children born in Hong Kong
  2. Before and after 1997, Hong Kongers have also migrated to foreign places for better welfare, not just Mainlanders. 
  3. The Hong Kong SAR government bears the responsibility for attracting Mainlanders. 

For the first point, we, the Hong Konger, never have the chance to vote in a referendum or through any other democratic processes on any part of the Basic Law during the Sino - British negotiation. The legality of their right of abodes does not imply their legitimacy. 

True, many Hong Kong families have migrated to other places but comparing Hong Kong's population size to Mainland, there must be more Chinese migrating than Hong Kongers. 

Further those who can afford to migrate are usually wealthy upper class, not the low - income families or the new couples in these 10 years. Why do the low - income families or new couples staying in Hong Kong have to suffer for what the rich minority has done (according to the logic in the article)?

Even if, we, Hong Kongers, did migrate for the sake of better welfare, so? What we have done is wrong does not mean the acts committed by 'double - nons' pregnant women are not wrong. They still bear the moral responsibility for consuming Hong Kong's welfare. 

The Hong Kong SAR government did permit Mainland pregnant women to come (for the moment) but it must be born in mind this government and our LegCo are never elected by universal suffrage. Strictly speaking, the government 's policies does not necessarily reflect our view. 

It remains to be seen whether Donald Tsang' s administrative measures will be working. Hopefully, the future government can have the gut to start the amendment process enshrined in article 159 of the Basic Law to eradicate the problem, once and for all. 

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