(v4.0)

[This website collects certain news and commentary on Hong Kong politics, society and culture. English-news sources exist in abundance, such as South China Morning Post, Hong Kong Free Press, Reddit on Occupy Central, etc). This websites provides transcriptions/translations from Chinese-language sources, including both mainstream media (Hong Kong newspapers, television and radio) and social media (Facebook, YouTube, blogs, discussion forums).]

[Notice: No updates until September 27 due to travel]

- (Ming Pao) September 5, 2017. At 7pm, a female mainland Chinese student dressed in white attempted to rip down the posters on Democracy Wall. She was stopped by those present. CUHK Student Union persons came down to find out what was going on. The woman said first in putonghua, then in English, that she has the right to take down the posters. When the reporters tried to interview her, she said: "I'm not listening."

Later the CUHK Student Union told the press that they will stop the university administration from removing the posters. They said that the administration is entitled to call the police for assistance.

Video: https://www.facebook.com/1034624499888866/videos/1836712733013368/
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mIWsHwGKKs4

- Her biggest problem was not because she failed to follow the rules and regulations for the Democracy Wall or because she tore off someone else's wall poster or because she disrespected other people's speech, but because she gave her deformed reasons in such a righteous manner! This was the result of many years of brainwashing. In Hong Kong, our students are used to reason, debate and discussion!

Oh, why is she speaking English? And she does not speak it well either!

- Why is she speaking English? First of all, she does not speak Cantonese. That leaves putonghua and English. Hong Kong students generally speak very poor putonghua. So that leaves English, which is a required language for admission to the Chinese University of Hong Kong.

Does she not speak it well? I believe that she speaks better English than that CUHK Student Union External Vice-president girl Annie Chu, who was clearly petrified at having to communicate in English. When Chu panics, she started moving her hands around just like Alex Chow.

- She said, they said.

She said: "Why can't I do this?"
They said: "Because we manage this Democracy Wall."

She said: "Who authorized you?"
They said: "The students voted ... the university."

15% of the students came out to vote. The other 85% declined to vote. So they cannot say that they have the popular mandate. The students do not have the right to authorize the Student Union to manage the democracy wall, which does not belong to the students. It was the university administration which allowed the Student Union to manage the Democracy Wall, subject to certain provisions (such as not allowing unlawful information). When the university attempts to remove unlawful contents, the Student Union turns and says that the university has no right because the Democracy Wall belongs to the Student Union.

Whatever else, they've got big brass balls to be saying these things.

- Support HK Police Facebook


Frame 1: "Democracy means that you can paste it and I can take it down." "What am I supposed to say?"
Frame 2: "You say that you represent the students of Chinese University of Hong Kong and I never agreed with your pasting it." "Please translate for me."
Frame 3: "What are you talking about?" "We have to 'look at' the wall."
Frame 4: "Who authorized you? We authorized you." "No, er ... it is the students and the university."

- It is said that this mainland Chinese female student has broken Hong Kong law when she destroyed private property. Well, what private property? I do not see any private property. Private property has an owner. Who is the owner? Nobody is raising their hand to claim ownership. The owner is in hiding to avoid sedition charges. So she was only removing ownerless trash. If this case is presented to the court, it will be automatically dismissed.

- (Bastille Post) September 7, 2017.

The mainland media outlet Guancha interviewed the woman who is now known as "The Angel in White":

A: Why shouldn't you mention may English name during the interview? Because I am afraid that "they" might find out.

Q: Are "they" looking for you?

A: I have looked at Facebook. But my friends have been tracking the related discussions all along. The main page for the Chinese University of Hong Kong. Supposedly they are cursing. Someone said to find me by human flesh search.

Q: That is to say, what happened after the incident has caused you some trouble?

A: Yes. But the fellow students that I know are mostly supportive. Certain more radical pro-Hong Kong independence students leave more extreme comments. On Facebook, there are typically more Hong Kong students. There were a lot of critical comments. Very frightening.

Q: Do some Hong Kong students support you?

A: Yes.

Q: Apart from the online attacks, have they caused you any material troubles?

A: No. Because the person in the video did not really look like me. They were unable to identify me.

Q: How come the Hong Kong media was present by chance to film there?

A: I don't know. Actually I found it very strange. Some of them were there to help the Student Union. Many Hong Kong are relatively biased for them. Actually, when I went there, I saw someone standing around with cameras. I thought that these were busybodies. I did not know that he was a media reporter. Actually they were there in the hope that the incident can swell up. Some of them were poaching there. When I began quarreling with the Student Union people, many people came over. I did not know that they were there. I was thinking, are they violating my image rights?

Q: Those posters appeared on September 4. Is there any hint as to who was responsible?

A: It happened this way. The posters appeared, and the school administration sent the security guards to tear them down. The posters reappeared. According to the rules, they can paste the posters with proper identification and then we should not ripped them down. When they post, they can state the length of time. But if it stays for more than a month, it can be removed. But these people did not identify themselves, and did not want to assume responsibility. They did not specify any length of time. The Student Union came over to stop me. Actually, the Student Union did not have the courage to say from the start that they erected the posters. Actually everybody knows that only the Student Union had the resources to erect these things all over campus overnight.

Q: How kind of impact did these posters have on you?

A: "Hong Kong is part of China." That is common knowledge, right? Those materials are illegal. It is really bad to post this sort of illegal materials in broad daylight. So far, there are no physical contact or clashes with the pro-independence people. But it is very comfortable to see this sort of talk.

 Q: Mainland Internet users like you. They thought that your English is very good. They heap praises upon you. What do you think?

A: I was very scared. I did not dare speak up because I was scolded a lot. The Hong Kong people used the Hong Kong media to scold me. Yesterday I took a peek. Fortunately I don't read Cantonese, but the English comments were very hard to take. I am really very disappointed. I felt that I was doing something right, but they are making out as if I was wrong.

Q: You need to understand that the people who support you are far more than those who oppose you.

A: But under these circumstances, I have the sense that mainstream media are still against me.

Q: Can I ask where in mainland China do you come from?

A: I am from northern China.

Q: You will only say that you are from northern China?

A: Because there are not a lot of students from mainland China here. I am very afraid that they will find me.

Q: Has the Chinese University of Hong Kong made an official statement or response on this matter?

A: Previously the vice-chancellor said that the school disapproves of Hong Kong independence before and now. He did send security guards to remove the posters. But the Student Union really went too far as if nobody can stop them. I don't mean that they cannot be stopped, but it is just that people have not used more extreme methods. So when they erected the posters again, we can't stop them.

Q: Has the university noticed what you did?

A: I don't know if the university has noticed or not. Today, I have been in hiding. Nobody can reach me. Nobody has said anything to me. But I am angry because I am being scolded all day. The people who know me all tell me that I did the right thing. But I am being scolded.

Q: That is to say, your friends support you in real life, but Hong Kong online opinion is against you.

A: Right. They even told me not to do outdoors, not to go outside the Chinese University of Hong Kong.

Q: Many Internet users think that you are cool. Not only is your English good, but you look good.

A: Thank you. At the time, I was very angry. I was going to eat at the canteen. I did not go past that area all day yesterday so I did not see anything. That night was the first time that I saw it. My friend told me afterwards that the posters had been erected for quite some time alreqdy. As I was eating, two female students in the next table were discussing this. They were quite angry. At the time, I thought: "If you are angry, then why not rip the posters down? Why don't you do something about it?" I was very angry. I told my friend: "I am going to tear down the posters later."

Q: Many people will support you. But if they had to do this, they would be scared away. You are a super-courageous person.

A: Thank you. I am sorry that I can't provide more information, because I am still afraid. I should tell you that the mainland students want to organize an event tomorrow (September 7). I will send the photos to you. It is in Cantonese, so I can't fully understand it. The organization has some Hong Kong students. Their slogan is "CUSU is not CU", meaning that Chinese University Student Union is not Chinese University because we refuse to be represented by them. I understand their intentions. After we all stand up, we can share the burden.

Q: Thank you. We have received the information. We thank you for doing this interview. This interview is over.

A: Good. Thanks for the trouble.

Afterwards, the female student wrote via Guangcha:

I thank everybody for their attention, support and concern for me. This was heart-warming after all the disappointing comments in Hong Kong media. I know that I have a strong and powerful motherland behind me, so I need not be afraid anytime.

Here are some extra points about what happened over the past few days:

1. The posters was illegally posted and should therefore be removed. I know that many people (especially the local Hong Kong students) disapprove of my method, but I am not sorry. I am proud of this. I don't want to say anything more about democracy. But I want to say that the Chinese University Student Union does not represent the voices of the Chinese University students! Absolutely not!

2. The Chinese University of Hong Kong is a very good school. It is an institution of high learning of our motherland. I love to be here. I feel very lucky to be able to learn and work here. The Student Union represents the extremist actions of a small number of persons. It does not represent the political position or the overall quality of the Chinese University of Hong Kong. The Chinese University has many more things that it can actively aspire to. I welcome your attention.

3. I did not seek fame. I did not seek celebrity. I merely did what I thought I should do. I thank you for your concern and support. Because I am still in Hong Kong, I want to have a peaceful learning environment. I hope that you won't try to ask too many questions or otherwise divulge personal information about me.

Hong Kong is an inseparable part of the motherland. Most Hongkongers are kind and good. The actions of the Student Union come from a small number of p. I am very touched by the support from everybody. Once again, I thank everybody!

Signed: That female student in white dress

(Headline Daily) September 8, 2017.

Many people have watched the video. The Hong Kong media wanted to put the focus on the female mainland student ripping up the posters, but the audience focused on English language skills instead.

At first, the female mainland student wanted to speak in putonghua. The Student Union executives did not answer in putonghua. So the female mainland student used English instead. Two Hong Kong students replied in English. It turns out that there was a vast gap in English language skills.

The female mainland student said: "You get put it up and I can take it down. You say that that you are the Student Union. I am a Chinese University student. I don't agree with doing this."

The female Student Union executive said hesitantly: "If you disagree with these other students posting those posters, you can post certain opposing opinions."

The female mainland student said: "Who gave you the power?" The female Student Union executive said: "Oh." The mainland female student said: "It is we students who gave you the power." A male Student Union executive interjected: "The students gave us the power." The female university student said: "Right! I am one of the students who gave you the power. Right now I disagree with your doing this."

With respect to the issues, each side have their reasons. But the female Student Union executive was at a total disadvantage because her English langauge skills were too poor. An Internet user wrote: "Hong Kong students even dream politics when they sleep. They don't want to learn English; they don't want to speak putonghua; and they feel good about how awesome they are!"

I have talked about the strange phenomenon about university classes: the first two rows of seats are almost always filled with mainland students. A CUHK Hong Kong student said that she sat in the front row once upon a time, and other students spoke to her in putonghua because it was taken for granted that only mainland students (NDS= Nei Dei Sang) sit in front. Most local students sit in the back where they hope that the teachers won't spot them.

I heard university teachers say that mainland students are more active with questions. When there are no mainland students in a class, local students simply won't ask questions and won't participate in discussion. Teachers gradually get used to the situation and give up posing questions to the local students.

We have to acknowledge a fact: mainland students are better than local students. The mainland students are not even the elite students from there, because the top of the cream are going to Peking University and Tsing Hua University to study.

In the 1980's and 1990's, the people of Hong Kong strive for excellence. They want to be the best, and they want Hong Kong to be the best in everything. Come today, the people of Hong Kong have no obvious superiority over the mainlanders. English language skills should be the strength for Hongkongers, but this video make us realize that mainlanders speak far better English than Hongkongers. Hong Kong has turned from Big Brother to Kid Brother. The 1.4 billion mainlanders not only have some uneducated nouveau riche, but also high intellectuals.

The new generation in Hong Kong is faced with a choice. They can seek out a comfort zone for themselves, damning the mainlanders as "Strong Nation People" with contempt. They can also take the opposite attitude and strive for excellence in the face of competition from mainland China and elsewhere. Local Hong Kong students should sit in the front role and actively engage in class discussions just like mainlanders in order to learn and improve themselves. Instead of hostility against mainlanders, their goal should be the attainment of excellence.

By Chris Wat Wing-yin:

Why is so much information coming out of the prisons? It turns out that Legislative Councilors have special privileges. They can make as many prison visits as they like. They can bring two persons with them on each visit, and take as much time as they like. They can exchange letters with the prisoners, and correctional officers are not allowed to read those letters. Nor are correctional officers allowed to monitor the conversations between legislative councilor and prisoner. This means that they can do anything that want.

So if the twenty something pan-democratic legislative councilors exercise their special privileges and take turns to make prison visits, the prisoners will have a direct communication channel to the outside world.

Ordinary prisoners are allowed only two visits per month from friends/families for 30 minutes per visit. Apart from working, ordinary prisoners have to undergo psychological counseling, job training, rehabilitation, etc.

So is it justice when people like Joshua Wong, Nathan Law and Alex Chow can have unlimited number of visits, take breaks from work to meet with visitors and occupy the interview rooms that are normally used by lawyers, social workers, social welfare officers and legal aid workers? Is this fair to the other prisoners?

In the past, prisoners want to meet with legislative councilors in order to lodge complaints about their cases. But today these esteemed prisoners are buddies with legislative councilors who use their special privileges to act as pigeon carriers for the prisoners, bringing out letters that would otherwise be in violation of prison discipline.

(Oriental Daily) September 6, 2017.

Under the Prisons Ordinance, each prisoner may receive two visits a month by friends/relatives. Each visit is limited to 30 minutes by at most three persons. For security reasons, these interviews are conducted through glass partitions to prevent physical contact.

There are 13 different occupation types in prison, including clothing manufacturing, knitting/sewing, leather goods, book binding, envelop manufacturing, etc. Prisoners are assigned to an occupation based upon preferences, health, etc. The occupations are grouped by degree of difficulty from A to F. The easiest jobs are cleaning or applying adhesives to envelops. The hardest jobs are construction or machine control. Depending on the job, the pay ranges from $23 to $192 per week.

(Oriental Daily) September 6, 2017.

District Councilors and Legislative Councilors have the right to visit prisoners by reason of "Official Visit." Our newspaper found that more than 20 pan-democratic legislative councilors have signed up, including Fernando Cheung, Charles Mok, Alvin Yeung, Chan Chi-chuen, Helena Wong, Hui Chi-fung, Andrew Wan, Eddie Chu, etc. Their visit schedules are systematically organized so that they don't show up at the same time. While the prisoners attend these Official Visits in air-conditioned rooms, they are relieved of their regular work duties (e.g. kitchen, laundry room, cleaning etc).

- If they don't go to work because of the Official Visits during the day, will they still get paid? Or will the pay go to whosoever has to be tasked with doing their work?

- The rules say that Legislative Councilors can take two persons along, bring any mat materials and take as much time as necessary. This set of conditions leads to the perfect set up for ... a game of mahjong. The prisoner, the legislative councilor and two friends can bring their own mahjong table and tiles, and play as many rounds as they like in the air-conditioned interview room with correctional officers standing guard outside the door.

- Would that be wrong? Of course not. The rules allow it, and therefore this is rule-of-law which is Hong Kong's core value.

(Oriental Daily) September 6, 2017.

According to information, the most frequently visited out of the 16 imprisoned persons are the three women at the Lo Wu Correctional Institution. Former Hong Kong Federation of Students deputy secretary-general Lester Shum has visited his girlfriend Willis Ho many times already.

Yesterday morning at about 10am, Lester Shum took a taxi from the city to the Lo Wu Correctional Institution. Legislative Councilor Eddie Chu Hoi-dick arrived about 5 minutes. While they waited, they smoked cigarettes. Then they went in together and came back around noon. Lester Shum came out first and smoked a cigarette. Eddie Chu came out five minutes later. The two left together by mini-bus.

According to information, Lester Shum's home is in Sham Shui Po district. If he took a taxi from home, it would cost him over $300. The Imprisoned Activists Support Fund pays for transportation of visitors nominated by the prisoners upon presentation of receipts.

(South China Morning Post) September 4, 2017.

A new independent fund is aiming to raise HK$4 million for the 16 recently jailed Hong Kong activists – including the poster boy for the city’s pro-democracy movement Joshua Wong Chi-fung – and the families they left behind.

The Imprisoned Activists Support Fund, which was set up on Monday, hopes to provide HK$10,000 a month to each jailed activist for them to support their families.

“These activists are fighting for ideals and justice, instead of their personal gain,” Civic Party barrister Margaret Ng Ngoi-yee said. Ng is one of the fund’s four trustees alongside Canto-pop singer, Denise Ho Wan-see, and academics, To Yiu-ming and Hui Po-keung.

“Society has the responsibility [to help] these activists,” Ng said.

The fund will also be used to help settle the activists’ legal fees, cover any expenses accrued as well as help their families with the travelling costs of visiting them in prison.

More than 60 per cent of the goal has already been raised after a rally in support of the protesters last month brought in HK$2.53 million. Attended by more than 22,000 people, it was one of the biggest protests since the Occupy.

Ng said those who made donations during the march were thinking of the activists so the fund currently had no plans to assist other protesters who might be imprisoned in future.

“We do not want to be too ambitious as we have limited experience [in managing such a fund],” Ng said. “This fund is a golden opportunity to unite society and we do not want to trigger unnecessary suspicions because of carelessness.”

When asked if they would offer help to those regarded as localists, she said: “We will cross the bridge when we come to this.”

Former lawmaker “Long Hair” Leung Kwok-hung, of the League of Social Democrats, also called on citizens not to underestimate the power of making donations. “Every penny given is offering support to politically suppressed people,” Leung said.

(Oriental Daily) September 4, 2017.

Baptist University School of Journalism assistant professor To Yiu-ming, Lingnan University Department of Cultural Studies associate professor Hui Po-keung and others announced the establishment of the Imprisoned Activists Support Fund.

They state that they intend to raise $4 million. The $2.53 million raised from the August 20 demonstration march will go to this Fund. They have asked the Confederation of Trade Unions to open a bank account for them. The money will pay for legal fees and relieve their family hardships. Each family will receive $10,000 per month unconditionally.

(SCMP) September 6, 2017.

The student union of Chinese University has threatened “escalating action” if heads of the institution do not respond by Wednesday 7pm to a row over the mysterious appearances of campus banners and posters advocating Hong Kong independence.

On Tuesday the university appeared to be pinning the blame on the union for not enforcing rules on the act which had been repeated at a different location – a giant banner and a wall of posters with the independence theme had reappeared at the campus a day after similar materials created a stir when they suddenly surfaced on the school grounds.

No one had claimed responsibility for the move and by 8.30am on Wednesday, the banners were still hanging in an area managed by the union. Two students were seen stationed at the site to prevent the materials from being removed.

The university had warned any advocacy of independence would be a breach of the Basic Law, which states that Hong Kong is an inalienable part of China.

On late Tuesday night, the student union issued the deadline to outgoing vice chancellor Professor Joseph Sung Jao-yiu and his would-be successor Rocky Tuan Sung-chi to respond further and state their positions on the matter, threatening “escalating action” if they failed to do so.

At least three large black banners bearing the words “Hong Kong independence” in Chinese and English were taken down on the first day of the school year on Monday.

But the stunt was repeated on Tuesday morning at a different location, with a black banner hung in the middle of Cultural Plaza, an open space near the canteens and bustling with students and staff.

Posters which read “Fight for Our Homeland. Fight for Hong Kong Independence” also filled a nearby “democracy wall”, which allows students to post their ideas freely without prior permission.

Union president Au Tsz-ho said anyone could put up posters on the democracy wall without prior permission, but applications must be made to the union to display banners.

Asked whether anyone had applied to display the controversial banner on Tuesday, he said the union only spotted it in the morning.

“A student had come to us [on Monday] night to retrieve the banner that was previously taken down, but we do not know whether today’s was also his work,” he said.

The school’s Office of Student Affairs stepped in to urge the union to prevent a recurrence.

“We have noted the posters and banners advocating Hong Kong independence. Such ideas have constituted a breach of relevant provisions of the law, and go against the university’s stance of absolute disagreement to independence,” a letter addressed to the student union said.

It also urged the union to strictly enforce the regulations on managing the area – without specifying them – and warned that the office would intervene and take down “inappropriate” materials if necessary.

But Eric Cheung Tat-ming, principal lecturer at Hong Kong University’s law faculty said he could not see any piece of criminal law which could be enforced in this case.

“Of course, we cannot say it was wrong to cite the Basic Law, but I doubt independence advocates would violate criminal ordinances,” he said.

In a written response, the union reiterated Cultural Plaza’s significance in allowing students to express their ideas and discuss current issues.

“It has always been such a place, and should remain unchanged ... Yet the university management has removed a banner without permission from the student union on the commencement day of the academic year,” the statement read.

“We are of the opinion that the action taken by the university is not appropriate, and we would like to express our deep regret at such action. We hereby urge the university to respect the autonomy of the student union, especially in terms of the management of the Cultural Plaza.”

After a meeting with Office of Student Affairs director Raymond Leung Yu-chiu on Tuesday, the union issued the statement demanding a clarification from Sung and Tuan, and reiterated that it would respect the autonomy and freedom of speech of students.

The student body was coy on whether it endorsed the advocacy of independence.

In a speech at the convocation ceremony on Monday, Au said he was glad to see that students were “doing their best to voice their opinions on matters they believe are right” after spotting such materials in campus.

Sung also said on Monday students were free to express their opinions as long as they did not break the law.

On Wednesday the student union said it would hold a forum to discuss freedom of speech and whether Hong Kong independence should be raised on the campus.

The forum will be held from 12.30pm to 2pm at Cultural Plaza.

Radical localists including Jason Chow Ho-fai, spokesman for the Hong Kong National Party, and Roy Wong Toi-yeung, the leader of Hong Kong Indigenous, will attend the talk.

Internet comments:

- Let us do the arithmetic.

The Civic Square 3 were sentenced to 6 + 7 + 8 = 21 months, which would mean $210,000.

The North East New Territories 13 were sentenced to 13 x 13 = 169 months, which would mean $1,690,000.

The total outlay is $210,000 + $1,690,000 = $1,900,000.

The remaining sum of $4,000,000 - $1,900,000 = $2,100,000 will be used to cover the "handling/processing fees" of the organizers.

Wow!

When I grow up, I want to be a Fund administrator too ... it is so much fun and rewarding ...

- "Handling/processing"? I see. Someone has to count the money and it is long, hard and tedious work.

- I almost gagged when I saw that the money has to go through the Confederation of Trade Unions. After all, their chairman Lee Cheuk-yan is famous for keeping the $500,000 from Jimmy Lai to the Confederation of Trade Unions in his own personal account for 9 months under the explanation: "I kept it in my pocket temporarily."

- As Tsang Chi-ho said, this is a "gift to the family in bereavement."

- Being in jail is a full-time 7-days-a-week 24-hours-per-day job. There is no such thing as going home after work, because you are at work every hour every day every week every month. There are 24 hours a day and 30 days per month, for a total of 720 hours per month. A monthly salary of $10,000 is equivalent to $10,000 / 720 = $13.88 per hour. According to the law, the minimum wage is $34.50 per hour. So this $10,000 bereavement gift is truly pathetic.

- When you go to jail, all expenses are paid for by the taxpayers. Without having to do everything, this $10,000 is airdropped on you. This is a gift, not a salary and therefore there is no Mandatory Provident Fund withholding. So why not take the money and run?

- When you are in jail, you can only spend your prison salary. So if you go to jail for 30 years for murdering a few police officers, you will have 360 months x $10,000 per month = $3,600,000 waiting for you when you come out. This is how you can afford to buy an apartment.

- For triad gangs, the "family settlement money" for jailed members is usually paid as a lump sum up front. By contrast, this Fund will pay by the month. The difference? Well, there is the small matter of investment interest. More importantly, you do not have to pay the entire jail term. For example, if you are sentenced to 13 months in prison, your actual time spent in prison is only about 2/3 after deducting Saturdays, Sundays and holidays. So the Foundation only has to pay $90,000 instead of $130,000, leaving more money to cover the "handling/processing fees."

- (Wen Wei Po) September 5, 2017.

Baggio Leung Chung-hang's Facebook: I don't know what to say ...

Lai Chun Rex's Facebook

[Justice Defense Fund] It will only defend the DQ4.
The disqualification of Leung/Yau is not about justice?

[Imprisoned Activists Support Fund] It will only support the North East New Territories 13 + Civic Square 3.
All those in jail for the police-civilian clash in Mong Kok are not "imprisoned"? Or are they not "activists"?

Might they feel embarrassed about choosing such names for their funds?

Localist comments:

- If that was what you intended all along, then you should not fucking call for Grand Unity for everybody to come out and march with you on August 20th. And when you ask for donations, you should fucking state clearly that not a fucking cent will go to the Mong Kok Fishball Revolutionaries. Fuck your mother!

- When you call for people to participate, you say that party lines don't exist anymore at a time of political persecution. But when it comes to dividing the loot, you only take care of your own kind. You are really fucking awesome.

- These people are such fucking bastards. They have declared that they own the Resistance brand and everybody else is just the hoi polloi.

- You wanted the Localists to put down their ideological disagreements and work with you. But when it comes to handing out support, you isolate them on the outside. What kind of game is this? I can tell you confidently that as long as you won't put down your own ideological disagreements, you can never hope to have us work with you across party lines. I will tell everybody that I know that this Fund is a pan-democratic operation designed to help themselves, and therefore not a single cent should be given to them. In the upcoming by-election, we would rather cast blank ballots than vote for the pan-democrats.

- I don't understand why the Localists should be begging the much detested leftist retards for handouts? Why can't the Localists start their own fund?

- Have you waken up yet? For the pan-democrats, the Mong Kok Fishball Revolution martyrs are Enemies of the People of Democracy who have to destroyed.

- Joshua Wong, Nathan Law and Alex Chow are elite university students with respectable bourgeois family backgrounds. They are adulated by the western media. Giving them money will help the reputation of the Fund and those associated with it.

The Mong Kok Fishball Revolution martyrs are lower-class poorly educated riffraffs who have at most part-time menial jobs. As rioters, they have negative propaganda value. Giving them money implies that the Fund supports assault, arson and vandalism.

The pan-democrats are investing their money in assets with the higher ROI (return-on-investment). It is that simple.

- Before: (Silent Majority for HK) Prior to the August 20th demonstration march, a list of 117 'political prisoners' was circulated around for people to donate to help.

After: (Ming Pao) The Support Group for the 16 Imprisoned Resisters announced that they raised over $2,515,690 during the August 20th demonstration march. They plan to establish a foundation whose bank account will be published later.

- The Fund people said that they would stop as soon as they reach the $4 million mark and that they have no intention of helping anyone else.  This means that the China Liaison Office 9 have been cast adrift:

(Oriental Daily) September 4, 2017.

Today (September 4) will be the day for the opening ceremony for undergraduate students at the Chinese University of Hong Kong. On this morning, the students were greeted by large number of black-background-white-lettered vertical banners with the words "Hong Kong Independence" around the campus.

In addition, the Goddess of Democracy statue outside the MTR station was drapped with a black-and-white-striped skirt on which were written the names of almost 100 social activists who have either been sent to prison or are standing trial, including Joshua Wong, Alex Chow and Nathan Law. The title was "The List of Hong Kong Political Prisoners."

In addition, there were many small posters with the sentences "Refuse to sink down" and "Only choice is independence" in Chinese and "Fight for our homeland" and "Fight for Hong Kong independence" in English.

CUHK Vice-chancellor Joseph Sung Jao-yiu said that there is freedom of speech at the university, and and the administration won't react as long as the students don't break the law and don't interfere with normal learning. He also urged the students to express their wishes with peace, reason and non-violence. Concerning the student leaders who were sent to prison, Sung said that there is plenty of discussion already. He said that judicial independence is an important bedrock for Hong Kong and he wants the public to have confidence in the judiciary and trust that the judges are ruling in professional manners.

(Ming Pao) September 4, 2017.

Chinese University Student Union president Au Tze-ho admitted that they hang up the skirt on the Goddess of Democracy because they want to remind students about the political prosecutions. However, he said that the Student Union did not hang up the Hong Kong independence banners. However, he thinks that the banners remind incoming students that "they should do those things that they believe are correct."

The Chinese University Student Union said on Facebook that the materials on Hong Kong independence (including the horizontal banner) were removed by school personnel about 30 minutes later. The Chinese University Student Union found the action regrettable. They said that they contacted the school but were told that the subject of Hong Kong independence was sensitive and had to be cleared out. They said that some of the materials were present in Cultural Plaza which was managed by the Student Union. Thus, they deplore the school administration for trampling on the right of the Student Union to manage student space.

(SCMP) September 6, 2017.

An open letter jointly issued by the student unions of seven Hong Kong tertiary institutions has labelled the removal of independence-related materials from campuses a serious erosion of academic autonomy.

City University, Hang Seng Management College, Lingnan University, Polytechnic University, Education University, Open University and Chinese University issued the letter on Wednesday after banners and posters advocating Hong Kong’s separation from China were spotted at more universities in the city.

“Freedom of speech and thought is a God-given human right. People may disagree with views on independence, but [anyone] should enjoy the right to talk about it,” the letter said.

“The suppression of such ideas by the school not only deprives political rights from students, but is a humiliation to academic freedom.”

The unions condemned their institutions for what they called a clampdown on free speech by removing the banners.

Materials calling for independence appeared at the University of Hong Kong, City University, Polytechnic University, Education University and Shue Yan University from Tuesday afternoon. Some were put up by student unions, while others were done anonymously.

On Monday at least three large black banners bearing the words “Hong Kong independence” in Chinese and English were found festooned at Chinese University in Sha Tin as the new academic year kicked off.

On Wednesday, Chinese University’s student union warned it might take legal action to stop banners being removed from the campus, saying it was considering seeking a judicial review over the school management’s handling of the matter. The union said it sought a response from the school by 7pm on Wednesday, but none had been received as of 7.30pm.

Students at Education University admitted they had hung a large black banner bearing the phrase “Hong Kong independence” outside the library of their Tai Po campus on Tuesday evening.

Union president Lala Lai Hiu-ching said the group’s primary aim was to support their counterparts at Chinese University.

Asked if the union championed independence, she said it was “an option that could not be ignored”.

“We support the discussion of different ways forward for Hong Kong,” Lai said. “But we have now demonstrated that the school will engage in political screening [of publicity materials], hurting our autonomy and freedom of expression.”

Her views were shared by Apostle Lau Chak-fung, who heads the student union of the privately funded Shue Yan University.

A “democracy wall” at its Braemar Hill campus was filled with independence posters as of Wednesday afternoon. They remained up at 5pm on Wednesday.

“We put them up after a consensus within the union that we should rally behind our peers at Chinese University,” Lau said.

If people disagreed, he added, they should respond by putting up posters of their own, instead of tearing down materials they disliked.

Lau also revealed that a meeting between the student union leaders was being arranged within the next few days to coordinate their actions.

A similar, smaller-scale stunt was carried out at City University by a student whose identity was not yet confirmed.

City University’s student union claimed posters advocating independence had been pasted on the Kowloon Tong campus’ “democracy wall” – a notice board for students to display materials freely – and removed by security personnel.

“From our understanding, the posters met all regulations,” the union said.

It was told by security staff that there was no record of the student responsible. The union rejected that explanation.

“The move not only destroyed the trust between the school and the union, but also the freedoms of City University students,” the union said.

A similar banner remained intact at Chinese University on Wednesday afternoon, more than a day after it had been put up for the second time.

The student union did not claim responsibility for the stunt, but vowed to intervene if school management tried to take it down.

The body also issued a deadline of 7pm on Wednesday for outgoing vice chancellor Professor Joseph Sung Jao-yiu and his would-be successor Rocky Tuan Sung-chi to state their positions on the matter, threatening “escalating action” if they failed to do so.

Internet comments:

- This was the most awesome display of student power ever! If we can paste 1,000 posters every day, the whole campus will become swamped and we will be liberated!

- Seriously though, why do these young elite students think that hanging a few banners and pasting a few posters is going to overthrow the Chinese Communists and achieve Hong Kong independence? Hong Kong independence is not a problem; but the intelligence level of these young elite students is the real problem.

- Great job! With a few more tricks like these, Article 23 will be on our heads with full public support.

- These university students always say "無懼中共打壓" (unafraid of the suppression by the Chinese Communists). That is why they sneak out in the middle of the night to hang the banners and paste the posters.

- They are so fearless that they won't identify themselves. They continue to hide their faces even as they continue to accept government subsidies and parental allowances. And they think that they are the next Martin Luther King's.

- Next stop, these fearless university students will travel to Tiananmen Square and unfurl banners about "Hong Kong independence." The stop after that will be twenty years of "Re-education through labor reform" at Beidahuang (Great Northern Wilderness).

- If they are truly fearless, they should have taken Facebook videos and dare the police to arrest them.

- Independence? They can start with taking Chinese University of Hong Kong into independence and rejecting all subsidies from the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region government of the People's Republic of China.

- The Chinese University of Hong Kong must make a decision. If it is to be part of the Hong Kong Nation, then it cannot be a Chinese university because everybody knows that Hong Kong is not China.

- As usual, nobody cares about the janitor aunties/uncles who will be tasked with removing these posters.

- Freedom of speech means that you are allowed to advocate Hong Kong independence, or overthrowing the Chinese Communist Party, or polygamy, or bestiality. But you are not allowed to destroy public property. Those posters were glued onto the walls; when they are pulled out, the paint comes off. The university will have to repaint the walls.

- At least the "King of Kowloon" Tsang Tsou-choi (see New York Times, May 4, 2011)'s graffiti had some artistic merit.

- Why does the CUHK Student Union want to drape a skirt on the Goddess of Democracy? Because they know that they will get television air-time for what would be otherwise ignored as Facebook nonsense.

(TVB) September 4, 2017. CUHK SU president Au Tze-ho said:
I believe that the Court of Appeal ruling might have scared certain students away from taking certain extreme actions. But when I think that something is right, I won't care too much. If you determine that this is worthwhile and if you are willing to possibly pay some heavy price, you should continue to do so. Rule-of-law is dead in Hong Kong except by name. When the laws are unjust, I don't think that there is any need to observe them."

- Of course, Au Tze-ho won't be leading the way to break the law. His duty as CUHK SU president is to provide assistance to those students who are arrested for breaking the law.

I may be wrong. And Au Tze-ho can show that I am wrong by leading the charge to break into prison to free the political prisoners of conscience.

- (Ming Pao) September 5, 2017. The CU Discovery Facebook announced that a "Hong Kong independence" horizontal banner was seen in Cultural Plaza the next morning. The CUHK SU Facebook shared that post with the comment: "In the face of the university administration oppressing discussions of Hong Kong independence, our fellow CUHK students are still fearless."

- Whenever your erect a banner, the security guards are going to remove it within minutes. You have to buy the materials and write the words; they only have to throw it away. Who is going to run out of energy?

By the way, is this going to bring Hong Kong independence any closer?

- Fearlessness should mean that (1) you erect the banner and (2) you stay there to protect the banner from being removed, to the extent of willing to give up your life.

Fearfulness means that (1) you erect the banner in the middle of the night and flee and (2) you refuse to identify yourself as the responsible person.

- (Wen Wei Po) September 7, 2017.

Yesterday a poster did the rounds on Facebook.

The posters contained the words:
#CUSU IS NOT CU!
Sorry, we refuse to be represented.

A comment was attached: "We refused to be represented, we refuse to have our viewpoints bullied, we refuse to maintain a cowardly silence." There was a call for students to show up at 530pm at the Cultural Plaza. "We will use civilized words to express our voices." People were encouraged to forward this poster, adding their own comments on the bottom half, "respecting others and refraining from personal attacks or unfounded insults."

- (Ming Pao) According to Senior Counsel Ronny Tong Ka-wah, those banners and posters may in violation of CAP 200 Crimes Ordinance:

9. Seditious intention

(1) A seditious intention is an intention—

(a) to bring into hatred or contempt or to excite disaffection against the person of Her Majesty, or Her Heirs or Successors, or against the Government of Hong Kong, or the government of any other part of Her Majesty’s dominions or of any territory under Her Majesty’s protection as by law established;

(b) to excite Her Majesty’s subjects or inhabitants of Hong Kong to attempt to procure the alteration, otherwise than by lawful means, of any other matter in Hong Kong as by law established; or

(c) to bring into hatred or contempt or to excite disaffection against the administration of justice in Hong Kong; or

 (d) to raise discontent or disaffection amongst Her Majesty’s subjects or inhabitants of Hong Kong; or

(e) to promote feelings of ill-will and enmity between different classes of the population of Hong Kong; or

(f) to incite persons to violence; or

(g) to counsel disobedience to law or to any lawful order.

10. Offences

(1) Any person who—

(a) does or attempts to do, or makes any preparation to do, or conspires with any person to do, any act with a seditious intention; or

(b) utters any seditious words; or

(c) prints, publishes, sells, offers for sale, distributes, displays or reproduces any seditious publication; or

(d) imports any seditious publication, unless he has no reason to believe that it is seditious,

shall be guilty of an offence and shall be liable for a first offence to a fine of $5,000 and to imprisonment for 2 years, and for a subsequent offence to imprisonment for 3 years; and any seditious publication shall be forfeited to the Crown.

- Ahem, $5,000 and/or imprisonment for 2 years! Now I can see why the CUHK SU from the president down will only admit to posting the list of political prisoners of conscience but declined to claim knowledge of the "Hong Kong independence" banners and posters. Fearless they are not; gutless they are.

- (SCMP) Pan-democrats pay price of not saying no to Hong Kong independence. By Alex Lo. September 6, 2017.

You either support Hong Kong independence or you don’t. The vast majority of locals oppose it. Only a few advocate it, about 17 per cent of people, if a 2016 Chinese University survey is anything to go by.

It’s a simple position to take: either/or. Yet, if you ask the opposition in the legislature and other anti-mainland groups, many would give a non-committal answer, and then dodge the whole question by reframing it as one of freedom of speech. It’s usually along the line of “people should have the right to say whatever they like”.

I have more respect for the secessionists, even though I think they are doing tremendous damage. At least they have the guts to state what they believe in.

Not so our opposition. Among such groups is Chinese University student union. Giant banners and a string of posters advocating independence surfaced on its campus at the start of the new academic year this week. No one has so far claimed responsibility. University management, quite reasonably, took the items down.

Predictably, the student union is not saying whether it supports independence, but instead has accused the university of censorship and suppressing separatism as a legitimate topic of discussion.

But how do you suppress free speech if no one has claimed the right and/or responsibility to put up such things? Even if someone had claimed ownership, it’s still within the university’s right to take them down, regardless of the message.

Suppose those posters promoted the Communist Party or Chinese nationalism, would the student union still defend them as energetically as now?

The latest incident, though, can be a learning moment. People have every right to exercise and defend free speech, but they are also morally obliged to state their position with respect to the content of the speech they are defending, whether it be white supremacy, the national security law or Hong Kong independence. Otherwise, free speech as a right is just vacuous.

Moreover, by refusing to repudiate independence, the pan-democrat opposition has effectively allowed its own campaign for greater democracy to be hijacked.

Its leaders may not want to lose the support of young voters sympathetic to independence. But they now risk losing the whole pro-democracy movement and inviting Beijing to interfere.

- CUHK Secrets Facebook

#CU6282A
Sticking to the facts, when you cover the entire Democracy Wall with copies of the same poster so that other people have no space left, then this is infringing upon other people's freedom of speech. Besides, there were other things on the wall before but you have covered them up. If you can cover other people up, can I find something else to cover all your posters?
#CU6282B
Before you get cocky enough to start a course to educate people, can you please check the facts first.
The anonymous posters are already violating the rules for using the Democracy Wall.
By posting those posters, they have already disrespected the consensus of the entire student body.
If someone pasted anonymously a poster to support the return of Hong Kong to China (as One Country One System),
we'll see the Student Union immediately ripped the poster off for violating the rules for using the Democracy Wall.
Please don't preach about democratic principles. It was always an issue that all is permissible if you hold the correct position.

- (Apple Daily) September 6, 2017. The City University Student Union said 「寧鳴而死,不默而生」(we would rather speak and die than kept silent and live). They said that they would never submit to oppression. If students have to go to jail for using the words "Hong Kong independence", then 「我哋慷慨就義,成為香港主權移交以嚟第一批文字獄犯。」(we will go to our deaths like martyrs and be the first group of people jailed for free speech after the transfer of sovereignty).

- Good, please remember what you said here. If you end up being sentenced to jail, then please don't ask for legal aid to go to the Court of Final Appeal.

- (Ming Pao) September 6, 2017.

Fellow student Au Tze-ho said that what Hong Kong is missing are the communities that were present in old movies. "I look at the street today and I see only drug store chains everywhere. There is no human feel." Hong Kong has changed a lot. But what are the stores changing? Did the communities change because the stores change? Are the communities solely responsible for human feel? It is natural for people to be nostalgic about the people in old communities. But what Au Tze-ho really wants to say is that there are too many mainland Chinese tourists, such that the many stores turn into dispensaries to make money. If we want to restore the old Hong Kong, mainland Chinese tourists should not be coming.

Fellow student Au Tze-ho said that two senior Macau citizens were arrested for sharing "content farm" information that was unfavorable to the government. Those two citizens were arrested because they distributed inaccurate information -- "five corpses" were never found at the described location and the government did not cover up the non-existent incident.

Fellow student Au Tze-ho said that students can be arrested for insulting the national anthem because their putonghua is not good. Anyone with a modicum of knowledge about the law can assure you that nobody will be prosecuted for not speaking good putongua. They can arrested for disrespecting the relevant laws.

I refer to Au Tze-ho as "fellow student" because I am a CUHK alumnus. This fellow students is very disappointing. He referred to retired magistrate Chan Pik-kiu as the "newly appointed Convocation chairman." What is this supposed to mean? Irrespective of Chan Pik-kiu's political position (if any), he was elected as Convocation president by a vote among the alumni. Au Tze-ho is disrespecting the election results and the voting alumni. When he lacks even such basic respect, he is an embarrassment to the Chinese University of Hong Kong.

- Wan Chin's Facebook


[Chinese University of Hong Kong Student Union event poster)
Hong Kong independence
Firmly resist political censorship at CUHK
Defend the freedom of speech of the students
Date: September 6, 2017
Time: 12:00-14:00
Location: Cultural Plaza
Speakers:
Hong Kong National Party spokesperson Jason Chow Ho-fai
Former CUHK SU president Ernie Chow Shue-fung
Hong Kong Indigenous convener Ray Wong Toi-yeung
Former CUHK SU president Tommy Cheung Sau-yin

The CUHK SU has no scholastics to speak of. They are an insult to the name 'University Student'! Why did the Student Union advertise "Hong Kong independence"? For money, for legislative seats, for by-elections. CUHK SU is shameless to organize a discussion forum with zero "balance of view" and completely loaded with pro-independence propaganda. They invited no scholars from the media, legal and political fields.

The main theme of the forum was freedom of speech. The most important thing about freedom of speech is the balancing of different views. But this forum only has independence/self-determination advocates. So what freedom of speech is there to speak of?

Balancing of views does not mean that you have to invite everybody on stage. But you must invite one or two persons who hold the opposite view or outsiders who have no personal stakes. This is an open forum inside a university campus; this is not a political party internal congress. Such is the minimal morality for scholastics but the CUHK SU is openly defying this. They act exactly like the Chinese Communist Party! Don't talk to me about CUHK students! There are only Chinese Communist bandits over there! ...

- (Stand News) September 6, 2017. https://thestandnews.com/politics/%E4%B8%AD%E5%A4%A7%E8%A6%81%E6%8B%86%E6%B8%AF%E7%8D%A8%E6%A9%AB%E9%A1%8D-%E5%BC%B5%E7%A7%80%E8%B3%A2-%E6%96%99%E6%A0%A1%E6%96%B9%E5%8F%97%E6%94%BF%E6%B2%BB%E5%A3%93%E5%8A%9B-%E9%BB%83%E6%AF%93%E6%B0%91-%E8%AD%B4%E8%B2%AC%E6%B9%AF%E5%AE%B6%E9%A9%8A/

At the discussion forum, Legislative Councilor Eddie Chu Hoi-dick said that the actions of the CUHK administration has damaged freedom of speech and academic research. He said that the written explanation from the university administration is not acceptable to normal persons. He demanded the university administrate to identify which Hong Kong ordinance is being violated by the Hong Kong independence banners.

Former CUHK SU president Tommy Cheung Sau-yin said that in 2014, the university administration allowed the presence of "I want genuine universal suffrage" banners on campus, but not "Hong Kong independence" banners now. Therefore, he believes that the university administration must have been forced to do this under tremendous political pressure.

Hong Kong National Party spokesperson Jason Chow Ho-fai said that recent events show that the government is suppressing political dissidents. He said that "freedom of speech no longer exists in Hong Kong."

Hong Kong Indigenous convener Ray Wong said that the government is using national sovereignty to restrict freedom of speech in Hong Kong. When sovereignty clashes with basic human rights, Hongkongers have no choice but to seek independence.

Former CUHK SU president Ernie Chow Shue-fung said that the Basic Law does not have public acceptance, and local Hong Kong laws are being overridden by the interpretations by the National People's Congress Standing Committee. Therefore, there is no point of talking about legal restraints at this time. The primary consideration for university to decide to resist or not lies in their perception of the rights and wrongs of the matter.

- In 2014, the CUHK administration allowed "I want genuine universal suffrage" banners on campus because it did not violate any law. In 2017, the CUHK administration won't accept "Hong Kong independence" banners because Article 1 of the Hong Kong Basic Law states that Hong Kong is an inseparable part of China. The CUHK administration was, is and will be opposed to Hong Kong independence.

(HKG Pao) By Chris Wat Wing-yin. September 2, 2017.

In the past, parents tended to think that the school is a safe place for their children to be educated, to gain knowledge, to evolve and to mature. We never thought that the Parents and Teachers Association could harm our children.

I wrote "in the past" because we can no longer be sure anymore.

Once you shut the door, the classroom is the teacher's world. You can say whatever, teach whatever, use whatever examples, apply whatever interpretations ... nobody else outside knows and nobody can interfere with you. Thus, the classroom is the best place for brainwashing.

I believe that most Hong Kong teachers are dedicated, kind-hearted and normal. But in a polarized society, there will always be a few Yellow Ribbon teachers around, and if you are careless, your children could be trapped. It will take years to rescue them.

In the past few days, the welcoming speech by the Queen Elizabeth Secondary School Alumni Association Tong Kwok-wah Secondary School in Tin Shui Wai student union chairperson Tong Kam-ting has been going around social media (see Facebook). The title of the speech is "Learning to become a disrepectful person" is from a typical victim of brainwashing. Here are some highlights from that speech:

- During my time in the student union, I had quite a few arguments with the two teacher advisors on various matters. In traditional thinking, rebutting your seniors is considered disrespectful and ill-mannered. But precisely because I was not respectful enough, they were made aware of my thinking and my insistence. And then we were able to understand each other.

- I remember the incident when the cabinet members turned their backs towards the national flag on sports day. At the time, many teachers said that we were being disrespectful. But in the face of a Communist regime and a Hong Kong whose freedom is being destroyed day after day ... we insisted on using a disrespectful method of expressing our discontent.

- ... It is hard to believe that so far 24 political prisoners are in jail. They might have used 'disrespectful' spirits to fight for Hong Kong democracy, independence, autonomy and self-determination. These young people may have been criticized by the general public as disrespectful ... but our youthful experiences allow us to stumble around and learn to 'persist' ..."

This speech let us see that today's children think that the Mong Kong riot and other physical clashes was merely about people who 'who were not slick and respectful' enough. For the past three years, nobody has told them that not only was it not disrespectful, it was outright incorrect and unlawful. Simply put, it was not right! Even more simply put, it was wrong!

Being "wrong" is completely different from "not being slick and respectful enough." I don't know if the adults were deliberately vague because they did not want to hurt the children's feelings. But it is the greatest tragedy in education when nobody would care to point out these mistaken ideas.

There are no political prisoners in Hong Kong today. Those individuals were sent to jail in a court after due process. The videos of the precipitating acts can be found all over YouTube/Google. How come the teacher won't show the videos in class and hold a discussion about whether this was violence or not?

When a student representative speaks publicly to the school, the text was cleared by the principal and certain teachers. If this speech was allowed to go on, then the school has approved the viewpoints as representing the position of the school and its teachers. So education there is not about pulling students back when they walk towards a cliff, but to kick them down the cliff.

I have nothing left to say about such a kind of education. I can only ask parents to be careful about how they choose schools, especially remember this name: the Queen Elizabeth Secondary School Alumni Association Tong Kwok-wah Secondary School in Tin Shui Wai district.

Relevant Link: #490 Secretary for Education Eddie Ng visits Tong Kwok-wah Secondary School

Relevant Link: (YouTube) Tong Kam-ting, you are even more awesome than Joshua Wong!

- (HKG Pao) September 3, 2017.

In the matter of Tong Kam-ting, the Book of Shameful Acts of Pan-Democrats Facebook has ferreted out three teachers at the Queen Elizabeth Secondary School Alumni Association Tong Kwok-wah Secondary School. In her speech, Tong had thanked three teacher advisors. She said that she had some arguments two of them -- Ko Chu-kin and Lai Kim-fung -- but they were nevertheless able to understand each other.


Ko Chu-kin


Lai Kim-fung

But most of all, she wanted to thank teacher Cheung Siu-chung. She said that whenever she had doubts about herself, Cheung would give her the reassurance and impetus. So Cheung Siu-chung may be the person most responsible for the forming of Tong Kam-ting.


The Black Hand at the Tong Kwok-wah Secondary School: Cheung Siu-chung (Professional Teachers Union executive committee member)

When Secretary of Education Eddie Ng said that "there is no need to discuss Hong Kong independence in schools," Cheung Siu-chung wrote an essay for Ming Pao titled: <When the school campus becomes the battlefield for political fights>. Cheung said that teaching Hong Kong independence in school is correct and necessary.

Cheung Siu-chung has a number of interesting Facebook posts. Here are his comments about the 2016 Rio Olympics:

Cheung Siu-chung: Does anyone think the same way as I do in wanting to see the Chinese national team get routed?
Cheung Siu-chung: If you want the Chinese athletes to win all the gold medals, then they should just take part in the Chinese National Games.

Commentator: Sir Cheung, I really want to ask you just why you so badly want the national team to lose? Have they offended your whole family? Pardon me for saying this so clearly, but I feel that your post is going too far.

Cheung Siu-chung: So ... I also really want to ask  you why you don't want me to want the Chinese team to lose, or why you want me to want the Chinese team to win? I don't remember having offended your entire family either. Sorry, pardon me for saying so clearly, but I feel that your reply is going too far.

According to one parent, "Actually most of the students at the Tong Kwok-wah Secondary School are pure and innocent and don't get involved in politics. But the brainwashing by the teachers have created a few anti-China students, such that Tong Kam-ting can hijack all the students in the school ... a few years ago on June 4th, the school used a school bus to take the students to the Victoria Park candlelight vigil. I did not permit my child to go. But he said that his fellow students had no idea why they had to go there. They just sat on the grass and played with their mobile phones. At the time, the students were only about 14 years old. They were being brainwashed by the teachers."

(SCMP) As China bans national anthem ‘disrespect’, how will Hong Kong football fans react in match just before key Communist Party meeting? By James Porteous. September 2, 2017.

Hong Kong soccer doesn’t loom large in the annals of world history. It barely looms in the annals of Hong Kong soccer history.

But when accounts of the post-handover decades are written, and especially chapters dealing with the increasing anger and discontent among the post-97 generation (and Beijing’s heavy hand towards them), football will feature prominently.

China’s fury at anything approaching dissent has resulted in a new law that will see anyone ‘disrespecting’ the country’s national anthem thrown in jail – and it all started in the compact Mong Kok Stadium where Hong Kong’s national team play.

In the wake of the Occupy Central protests, anger moved to the football stands and the team’s World Cup qualification matches in 2015 became political events, with supporters booing the anthem before each game.

It attracted punishment from world governing body Fifa – and more importantly, it now seems clear, the ire of China’s power brokers.

Mainland residents were supposedly furious after Hong Kong fans booed the anthem before those World Cup thrillers against powerhouses Maldives and Bhutan in 2015.

It didn’t help that China and Hong Kong had been drawn in the same World Cup qualifying group – and Hong Kong’s next game was in China. I have never seen such a security presence at a sporting event as at that game in Shenzhen, though only a handful of Hong Kong fans were allowed across the border.

The return match in Hong Kong in November was laden with political significance. After warnings from Fifa, fans mostly refrained from booing, many holding cards with BOO! printed on them instead. The shouts of “We are Hong Kong!!” – pointedly in English to underline fans’ sense of a separate identity to their mainland China rivals – were unceasing.

Could president Xi – a noted soccer fan – have been watching at home?

In the five years since he has been in charge he has crushed hopes that the country was becoming more liberal, and brooks no dissent.

You could imagine him getting straight on the big red phone after hearing Hongkongers – already in his bad books after Occupy – booing his anthem. “Sort it out,” he might have barked to underlings, with this law the result.

Like most of Beijing’s responses to Hong Kong “misbehaviour”, it seems almost calculated to exacerbate people’s concerns and fuel more anger. (And of course, the Communists had so much respect for the man who wrote the anthem’s lyrics that he died in prison during the Cultural Revolution).

“Some Hong Kong fans do not like to be told what to do by the mainland,” said professor Brian Bridges, with some understatement.

Formerly head of political science at Hong Kong’s Lingnan University, who this year edited an issue of The International Journal of the History of Sport dedicated to sporting identity and politics in Hong Kong and Macau, he expects the law “may backfire and only provoke more resistance and publicity.”

Tobias Zuser, a local academic and football fan whose field is sporting culture in Hong Kong and China, and who co-hosts The Hong Kong Football Podcast, concurred. “The big question will be how authorities would execute [punishment] against 6000 anonymous people. Who booed and who did not? I don’t think the law would be successful in muting political dissent at games – and it might just trigger fans to think of ‘creative’ responses.”

(SCMP) As China bans national anthem ‘disrespect’, how will Hong Kong football fans react in match just before key Communist Party meeting? By James Porteous. September 2, 2017.

Supporters at Hong Kong Stadium for the Asia Cup Qualifier against Malaysia on October 10 will surely express their opinion of the anthem law quite clearly. Another fine, or even a points deduction, seems likely to be heading to the Hong Kong Football Association’s headquarters. Perhaps an inconsequential concern given wider fears over free speech and repression, but still tough on the HKFA.

“It’s not for the HKFA to comment on mainland legislation or how it will be applied and relate to Hong Kong,” said its chief executive, Mark Sutcliffe. “We will continue to play the anthem and it will be up to people to decide whether to respect it or not – we hope they do, otherwise we will potentially be fined by Fifa again.”

- Relevant link: #376 Boo! (2015/11/18) and #731 Guangzhou vs Hong Kong (2017/04/21)

The HKFA pays the fine, so the fans who boo'ed the national anthem don't care. If they keep doing this, the penalties are increased, including heavier fines; loss of match points; closed-stadium home matches; home matches held in away locations; forfeiting matches; suspension of participation; permanent expulsion of membership. Since it does not hurt individual fans, they will keep doing this until Hong Kong is out of FIFA.

- These fans have no genuine fondness for a Hong Kong team most of whose players were born in Africa, South America and United Kingdom. The FIFA matches are an excuse to come out to boo the national anthem.

When Hong Kong is ousted from FIFA, they will move on to the other sports (basketball, volleyball, table tennis, swimming, even cricket). They will not stop until Hong Kong is completely out of all international connections. When that time comes, they will have achieved "Hong Kong is not China" because China has the international connections whereas Hong Kong has none.

Internet comments:

- (Bastille Post) By Lo Wing-hung. August 30, 2017.

In the 1970's, the television stations always played God Save The Queen when their programming is done for the day. At the time, I was still very young but I already wondered why we Chinese people have to watch the Queen of England on television afterwards. At the time, I was still to young to know anything about colonialism.

When I got into secondary school, I learned by studying Chinese history that the Qing empire lost the Opium War and ceded Hong Kong to the British Empire. Then I understood why our television stations played the British national anthem. I was ashamed of the Qing government for losing its honor.

After the handover, there have been many scenes in Hong Kong of booing the national anthem. On the Internet, there are performances of the national anthem with revised lyrics laced with foul language. I found this type of behavior quite unacceptable. If you are dissatisfied with the Central Government, the Chief Executive or the government, you can express yourself by all means. There is no reason to boo your own national anthem, or burn your own flag, or insult your own nation.

Not many people dared to come out to criticize such behavior, because they are afraid of being accused of pro-China and pro-establishment. If mistakes aren't corrected, they can only become more extremely. Eventually wrong becomes right. Among young people, you are abnormal if you don't abuse the national anthem.

Many people adore the United States, where the United States Flag Code stipulates that members of the Armed Forces should give the military salute at the first note and maintain the position until the last note, while citizens should face the flag and stand at attention with their right hand over the heart. At the 2016 Olympics in Rio, women's gymnastics gold medal winner Gabby Douglas had to apologize to the public for failing to adhere to the protocol during the awards ceremony.

The National Anthem Law draft proposal by the National People's Congress said that those present should stand at attention solemnly and not be disrespectful to the national anthem. But pan-democratic legislators are arguing about just what is respectfulness and solemnity.

We can argue about everything. But we should be debating more on the relationship between freedom and self-discipline. We value freedom. But when we exercise our freedoms without appropriate self-discipline, we will be violating the freedoms of others. Have those who sing the national anthem with obscenity-laced lyrics ever considered that their actions are a huge insult to those who respect their national anthems? When they road in laughter, have they ever considered how others feel?

Every nation has its national spirit, which is often represented by the national anthem and the national flag. A nation in which the citizens can let most of its citizens insult its anthem and flag is doomed to extinction. You can oppose the government, but you can't go too far.

- (Speakout HK) By Chris Wat Wing-yin. September 2, 2017.

With the 2012 anti-National Education protests, there emerged a new body of persons in Hong Kong known as The Silent Majority.

As the name suggests, this is a majority group. They are silent for very simple reasons. Firstly, some of them don't know and don't want to know about politics. Secondly, some of them know politics only too well and are disgusted.

These people chose to be silent because they don't want to get into arguments. For example, I am in a whatsapp group with about 30 former fellow students. The most active members are four to five Yellow Ribbons. And then one or two Blue Ribbons occasionally come out to debate them. Meanwhile the more than 20 others chose to read only without responding. They have their own opinions, but they don't want to break up the multi-decade friendships with their authentic opinions.

As one event after another came along -- anti-National Education, Occupy Central, the Mong Kok riot, Leung/Yau, the DQ4 legislators, Mr. Stapler ... most people continue to remain silent with only a few out in the extremes still speaking out. But the silent majority has changed their opinions. Instead of maintaining silence to preserve friendships, they are now silent because they don't want to damage their own intelligence level. Indeed, as I write my articles over the recent years, I have increasingly felt that I am debating with idiots.

A while ago, I got into a debate about how an oath can be said to be "sincere" and "solemn." I already felt silly about this. After all, I can find any primary school student and he can tell me what sincerity and solemnity are about.

More recently, Democratic Party member Lam Tsz-kin claimed to have been kidnapped. When he was freed, he went to eat two filet-o-fish burgers, took a shower and went to bed with 21 staples still on his thighs. Even kindergarten children would laugh at this story. But there are still adults who believe and support Lam Tsz-kin.

Most recently, the debate over the National Anthem Law has been completely unwatchable. We have a Senior Barrister telling us: "If you deliver a lousy rendition of the national anthem, or you sing out of tune, or you use forgot the lyrics, or you had to read the lyrics through your mobile phone as you sing, then are you being solemn?"

And a musician asks: "If I misplayed one note, then is it an insult to the national anthem? If I had toe cramps and cannot stand on my feet during the national anthem, then this is being disrespectful? If I got too involved in the singing anthem ... you know, the lyrics contains phrases such as 'blood and flesh', 'Great Wall', 'hollering', 'cannon barrage' and so, then is that being disrespectful?" It is an insult to your intelligence to have you answer such questions.

Recently I spoke to some friends who are in the "silent majority." I asked them why they choose to remain silent in the face of such gross absurdities. They said: "It is a waste of time to argue with idiots!" ...

- (Oriental Daily) September 3, 2017.

... In truth, the National Anthem law is not going to affect the lives of ordinary citizens. The people who are going to affected are the regular demonstrators, such as Joshua Wong and others who go down to the Golden Bauhinia Square to cross their arms during the flag-raising ceremony on July 1st; or the football fans who boo the national anthem during the China-Hong Kong matches. Unless you know that you are in the business of trouble-making, what do you care about a National Anthem law?

Some people are worried that singing out-of-tune will constitute an insult to the National Anthem. Actually, the existing National Flag law and the National Anthem law do not allow for excessive use. If you drop the flag on the ground by accident, you are not going to be prosecuted; but if you call the press and set fire to the national flag in front of dozens of cameras, you will probably be prosecuted.

In most countries around the world, their citizens maintain a certain solemnity when their national anthems are played. This is basic respect for their nations, their peoples and themselves. If you don't even have that basic respect, then there cannot be any civic society or civic consciousness.

- (YouTube) Former Miss Hong Kong runner-up Cally Kwong was interviewed by Speakout HK:

We are indeed Chinese. If you cannot even sing your national anthem ... what national anthem would you like to sing? You are singing someone else's, right or not? ... Respecting the nation is the same as respecting your own self. If you don't respect your own national anthem, if you don't respect your own nation, then you don't respect your own self.

I think that some people are rebellious by nature, or else they feel that this is so cool. Anyway, they don't want to be like you. But I have to emphasize once more why this is not the same ... You take a look at yourself in the mirror. You are Chinese. You are indeed Chinese. You have to know your roots. You are Chinese. You have to sing the national anthem. Why do you want to do these disrespectful things.

- (Apple Daily) I look in the mirror and I see a Hongkonger.

- Social scientists share the consensus view that human races are a social construct and have no biological basis. So it does not matter if you say that I myself and all my ancestors were born in China. It only matters that I regard myself as a member of the Hong Kong race and not of the Chinese race. That is why we must have Hong Kong independence now.

- Conversely, it does not matter if Cally Kwong and others like her say that they are Chinese. They are not. They are members of the Hong Kong race. They say that they are members of the Chinese race only because they have been brainwashed. When Hong Kong becomes an independent nation, these people will be de-programmed in labor camps.

- As Hong Kong University Student Union president Wong Ching-tak brilliantly pointed out several months ago, China is an imaginary construct created by the Chinese and Hong Kong Communist governments to deceive and oppress us. Once you recognize this truth, China will be unmasked just like The Wizard of Oz.

- (The Law Library of Congress)  France: Decree on National Anthem Desecration

(September 20, 2010) Article 433-5-1, which was inserted in the Criminal Code by the 2003 Law on Internal Security, provides that the act of publicly desecrating the national anthem or the national flag during an event organized or regulated by public authorities is punishable with a €7,500 fine (about US$9,500). If committed during a meeting or gathering, the offense carries a punishment of up to six months of imprisonment as well as the €7,500 fine.

The French national anthem La Marseillaise starts with this verse:

Arise, children of the Fatherland,
The day of glory has arrived!
Against us tyranny's
Bloody banner is raised, (repeat)
Do you hear, in the countryside,
The roar of those ferocious soldiers?
They're coming right into your arms
To cut the throats of your sons, your women!

To arms, citizens,
Form your battalions,
Let's march, let's march!
Let an impure blood
Soak our fields!

It's okay in France but not in Hong Kong?

- In Hong Kong, schools have their own school songs. For example, here are the DBS School Hymn, the Maryknoll Convent School Song, La Salle College School Song. The songs are usually sung in large assemblies with the student body, teachers, principals and guests. Does anyone deliberately make obscene gestures or shout slogans in protest? Why? Because they know that they will be subject to school discipline with penalties ranging from admonitions through demerits all the way to expulsion.

What justifies these school policies? Because the preference of a small number of people to create chaos must not be allowed to violate the rights of the majority who want to sing their school songs in a respectful and solemn manner.

- (RTHK) August 29, 2017.

On RTHK, Legislative Councilor Dennis Kwok Wing-hang (Civic Party) has lots of questions. He wanted to know how to enforce the law at a meeting with several tens of thousands of people. He also wanted to know whether you can read the text messages on your mobile phone during the playing of the national anthem.

A listener called in and expressed his concern whether he has to stand up when the national anthem is played on television during his meal.

- What is respectful and solemn? Well, "I know it when I see it."

The phrase "I know it when I see it" is a colloquial expression by which a speaker attempts to categorize an observable fact or event, although the category is subjective or lacks clearly defined parameters. The phrase was used in 1964 by United States Supreme Court Justice Potter Stewart to describe his threshold test for obscenity in Jacobellis v. Ohio. In explaining why the material at issue in the case was not obscene under the Roth test, and therefore was protected speech that could not be censored, Stewart wrote:

I shall not today attempt further to define the kinds of material I understand to be embraced within that shorthand description ["hard-core pornography"], and perhaps I could never succeed in intelligibly doing so. But I know it when I see it, and the motion picture involved in this case is not that.

The expression became one of the best-known phrases in the history of the Supreme Court. Stewart's "I know it when I see it" standard was praised as "realistic and gallant" and an example of candor.

- Dennis Kwok is going to encourage people to test the boundaries of the National Anthem Law. Here is how it will unfold.

So someone is going to mispronounce a word. He is not arrested. Someone else else is going to mispronounce two words. He is not arrested. Someone else is going to slip in an obscenity. He is not arrested. As one person after makes their attempts, they need to outdo the preceding person because there is no glory in following what others have already done. Eventually someone goes way overboard such that the whole world can see it. He is arrested, charged and convicted. In his trial, his lawyers won't bother to argue the facts, but concentrate on peripheral issues such as the constitutionality of Annex 3 of the Basic Law.

- Did you think that this script is unlikely? Well, if you transpose this script from the national anthem to the Legislative Council Oath of Office, then this is exactly how it unfolded.

- The important thing to note is that Dennis Kwok will encourage others to test the limits. But he will do nothing of the sort. He is a Senior Counsel and a criminal conviction will bring about his disbarment. It is the job of people like Joshua Wong, Nathan Law, Alex Chow, Billy Fun and Colman Li to be guinea pigs to locate the boundaries of the  law.

(HKG Pao) September 1, 2017

It is Next Media's standard tactic to make up and demonize the nickname of a target person. For example, when CY Leung was elected with 689 votes from the Election Committee, his nickname was naturally '689.'

Now that Carrie Lam was elected with 777 votes, it is naturally that Next Media gives her the nickname '777'. But how is the demonizing coming along? Well, so far the results have been surprising:

Here is a tally of the number of Next Media articles with '777' mentioned:

Month Apple Daily Next Weekly
March 50 3
April 45 8
May 10 2
June 10 2
July 17 1
August 8 1

So it seemed that Next Media has given up its campaign. By comparison, when CY Leung was still Chief Executive in December 2016, Apple Daily had 128 articles and Next Weekly had 12 articles with '689' mentioned. So why is Next Media being so nice to Carrie Lam?

Well, if you look at Google Trends, then the keyword "689" is even more popular than CY Leung. in like manner, "777" is more popular than "Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor."

But that doesn't mean that the nickname "777" is more popular than the proper name "Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor."

Who searches for "689" by country of residence? The top five are Hong Kong, Taiwan, Thailand, South Korea and China.

Who searches for "777" by country of residence? The top five are Israel, Kuwait, Bulgaria, Croatia and Czech Republic.

What related terms are searched along with "777"? The top five are Boeing 777, Boeing, Casino 777, Vegeta, Vegetta 777.

By far, when people search for "777", they are looking for information on the Boeing 777 aircraft. The people of Hong Kong are not interested in "777" and they do not think "777" is Carrie Lam.

When a Hongkonger searches for "777", he is going to get a lot of Boeing 777 results because that is what the Israelis want. Conversely, if an Israeli looks for "777", they don't want to see some Apple Daily article written in a language that they cannot read.

Because the Boeing 777 is just a popular keyword, all other usages are overwhelmed. Being so skilled in Search Engine Optimization and Search Engine Marketing, Next Media obviously saw the point. So will they continue to promote democracy by pushing "777"? Or will they move on to some other catchphrase that will bring them more hits (and therefore money)? It is clear what their choice is.

It sounds bizarre to say that the Boeing 777 saved Carrie Lam. But if you know enough the new media game, you will know that this did happen. Of course, there are other issues such as political environment, personalities, etc. But those are minor factors compared to operations/propaganda considerations.

Next Media has historically thrived by fanning hatred. If they can't hype up "777", they will move onto the next topic in order to fan up hatred and controversies. What is a likely topic? How about demonizing the judges? That should raise a storm.

(SCMP) August 30, 2017.

The departing vice-chancellor of the University of Hong Kong on Wednesday rejected calls to oust Benny Tai Yiu-ting, the controversial legal scholar and co-founder of the 2014 Occupy protests.

Speaking to the media after officiating at the university’s inauguration ceremony for the last time, Professor Peter Mathieson revealed that he had recently received a handful of requests to remove Tai from the institution’s law faculty. The vice-chancellor did not identify who sent the letters, but said he had read them, and respected the authors’ opinions.

“I read these letters and don’t agree with them all and I don’t expect to agree with everybody,” he said. “We have our procedures for taking actions against students and staff if we think they infringe the regulations of the university. But, we are not a surrogate courtroom. The court has its own opportunity to make decisions about guilt or innocence and we respect those decisions.”

The vice-chancellor’s remarks came as pro-establishment legislator and former Law Society president Junius Ho Kwan-yiu stepped up pressure on the university to sack Tai. Ho had earlier written to the university council chairman Professor Arthur Li Kwok-cheung to ask for Tai to be removed. Ho also organised an online petition to call for his sacking.

Ho accused Tai, as a law lecturer, of “misleading” students and of “taking the lead” to break the law, referring to Tai’s Occupy protests in 2014, in which the law lecturer asked people to stage sit-ins in Central to block the roads and force Beijing to give Hong Kong universal suffrage.

According to Ho’s office, the online campaign, which was launched at about 11pm on Tuesday, had collected more than 23,000 signatures as of 6pm Wednesday. Ho had aimed to collect about 40,000 signatures.

Earlier this month, the Court of Appeal sentenced three of the student leaders, Joshua Wong Chi-fung, Nathan Law Kwun-chung, and Alex Chow Yong-kang, to jail following a successful sentence review by the government.

In his judgment, Court of Appeal vice-president Wally Yeung Chun-kuen highlighted that “certain people, including individuals of learning, advocate ‘achieving justice by violating the law’ and under this slogan, they encourage others to break the law”. He did not name names but it was widely believed he was referring to Tai.

Tai did not reply on Wednesday to requests for comment from the South China Morning Post. He earlier argued if it should be “the victims that should be blamed”, or “the institution that created the evil”.

(Wen Wei Po) September 2, 2017.

As of 11:30pm September 1, 2017, Junius Ho's online signature campaign has gathered 59,653 signatures, including 2,312 persons from the law sector and 5,880 from the education sector.

Internet comments:

- (Judiciary.hk CAAR 4/2016) Here is Court of Appeal vice-president Wally Yeung's contribution to the judgment on the Civic Square 3:

2. I should reiterate that pursuant to the Basic Law and the Hong Kong Bill of Rights Ordinance, Hong Kong residents enjoy the freedoms of assembly, speech, procession, demonstration and expression of opinions. The basic freedoms conferred on Hong Kong residents are comprehensive and in no way lesser than the freedoms enjoyed by people of other advanced and free societies.

3. However, the aforementioned freedoms are not absolute or unrestricted; they are subject to the supervision of the law. Hong Kong residents are obliged to observe the laws that are in force in Hong Kong, and the exercise of the rights conferred by law is by no means a reason or excuse for doing illegal acts. Any act of protest or demonstration for which the police have not issued a Notice of No Objection, or in which violence or the threat of violence is used to express one’s opinions, crosses the boundary of the peaceful exercise of the rights and enters the territory of unlawful activities; it becomes an unlawful act which interferes with the rights and freedoms of others.

4. The lawful exercise of rights conferred by law, and the protection of the enjoyment of rights and freedoms by others according to law, co-exist with each other without conflict, and should be a symbol of a civilised society which upholds the rule of law.

5. Acts done in the name of the free exercise of rights, but which are in substance acts which undermine public order and breach the peace, will throw society into chaos, impact seriously and adversely on its progress and development, and prevent others from exercising and enjoying the rights and freedoms to which they are entitled. If such acts cannot be effectively stopped, then all discussion about freedom and the rule of law will become empty talk.

6. In recent years, an unhealthy wind has been blowing in Hong Kong. Some people, on the pretext of pursuing their ideals or freely exercising their rights conferred by law, have acted wantonly in an unlawful manner. Certain people, including individuals of learning, advocate “achieving justice by violating the law” and, under this slogan, they encourage others to break the law. These people openly flout the law. Not only do they refuse to admit their lawbreaking activities are wrong, but they even go as far as regarding such activities as a source of honour and pride. It is unfortunate that such arrogant and conceited ways of thinking have influenced some young people and have caused them to engage as they please in activities that are damaging the public order and disruptive of the peace at assemblies, processions or demonstrations.

- (Silent Majority for HK) September 1, 2017.

In 2013, Hong Kong University associate professor Benny Tai wrote in a newspaper article to advocate achieving democracy through "civil disobedience." He told demonstrators to "illegally occupy the main streets of Central district". He said: "Simply put, I am looking to be arrested." He said that all participants must be ready to accept the legal consequences for breaking the law and to surrender themselves to the law enforcement department afterwards.

In order to incite more people to participate, the legal scholar Benny Tai minimized the possible legal consequences. He said that most people who violate the Public Order Ordinance are fined $1500 and the conviction record will be erased in three years.

But when the time came for him to "pay the bill," Benny Tai reneged. He said that he needed to study whether the charges against him were reasonable. This means that he will plead to minor charges but contest more serious charges.

Benny Tai has also denied that he was the original creator of the the phase 違法達義("achieving justice by violating the law"). He said that someone else must have fused his "civil disobedience" with "achieving justice by following the law".

- (Apple Daily) By Benny Tai. August 29, 2017.

Many people say that the "individual of learning" was me. I went over all my previous articles and found only one article with the term "achieving justice by violating the law."

I believe that many people have heard me talk about the four levels of progress of rule of law (ROLE Project)

Professor Benny Tai of University of Hong Kong, in his book 法治心:超越條文與制度的法律價值 The Passion for Rule of Law: Values beyond Legal Text and Legal Institutions, considers rule law in four levels of progress:

(1) Existence of law 有法可依

  • Laws of the legal system must satisfy certain qualitative requirements: generality, publicised, stability, clarity, non-retroactivity, non-contradictory, against impossibility, against arbitrariness and general congruence of law with social values.
  • Laws must also have covered major areas of human activities

(2) Regulation by law 有法必依

  • The sovereign adopts law as the major governing tool.
  • Officials are commanded to apply laws in governing though there is still only internal mechanism to ensure officials’ compliance with law.
  • Public order is basically maintained.
  • Disputes in the society are mainly resolved through peaceful and legal means.

(3) Limitation from law 以法限權

  • Law imposes external limits on the exercise of governmental powers through various channels including limitation by separation, constitutional limitation, administrative limitation, judicial limitation, political limitation and social limitation.
  • The government and its officials and agents are accountable under the law.
  • Corruption must have been substantially contained.
  • Competent, independent, and ethical adjudicators, attorneys or representatives provide access to justice.

(4) Justice through law 以法達義

  • Law serves justice of different conceptions including procedural justice, civil rights justice, social justice and deliberative justice (the ability for public to meaningfully participate in the law making process).

"Limitation from law" can at most make the government rule in accordance with the law, but the law may not be able achieve justice. When this happens, citizens will use civil disobedience to move the rule of law forward until they can get "justice through law." From hence came the idea of "achieving justice by violating the law."

I am not the original creator of the notion of "achieving justice by violating the law." But I noted that somebody who quoted my theory on rule of law combined "civil disobedience" with "justice through law" to form "achieving justice by violating the law." I believe that the notion of "achieving justice by violating the law" is highly creative, and is destructive and threatening to an unjust system.

- (SCMP) Sacking Benny Tai would not achieve anything, just let him discredit himself. By Alex Ho. August 23, 2017.

Many pro-establishment figures want to see the back of Benny Tai Yiu-ting. At least one lawmaker says he should be sacked from the University of Hong Kong for “poisoning” young minds.

Former Bar Association chairman and senior counsel Paul Shieh Wing-tai said Tai, an associate law professor and Occupy Central co-founder, “had a lot to answer for”.

That’s true, but most likely, Tai will not be held accountable. As an academic, he is politically untouchable at HKU; he knows it and we know it. That’s why he still flouts his views before TV cameras.

To be fair, Tai is not the only one. His Occupy colleague, Chan Kin-man, is an associate sociology professor at Chinese University. Yet, somehow, Tai gets all the bad press.

There are good reasons not to target them for dismissal, both ethical and practical, at least for now. Universities, especially those with a long established tradition, are usually full of people with eccentric ideas who have never worked a day in the real world. Some of these ideas can be wacky and even pernicious. Controversies arise when they try to put those ideas into practice.

Tai and Chan have a peculiar idea of “civil disobedience”. The Occupy protests of 2014 and the Mong Kok riot of 2016have been the results. From the start, the Occupy movement didn’t work out the way they had planned. So to what extent were they responsible?

Both are facing charges of causing a public nuisance for their roles in the 2014 street protests and will appear again in court next month. So their culpability is a matter for the court to decide. Without a court ruling against them, it would be difficult to launch administrative processes legally required at their universities to dismiss them.

But why did their idea catch on? They are a symptom, not the disease. Getting rid of them will solve nothing. That would just turn them into another cause celebre for the opposition and provide more excuses for student radicals to turn their campuses into battlefields. Tai and Chan are ideologues. You can argue with them and let them discredit themselves. Give them enough rope, they will.

Our universities have had enough political struggle and deserve calm to carry on with what they are supposed to do – to teach, to learn and to research.

- (EJ Insight) Who can ensure a fair trial for Benny Tai? By SC Yeung. August 31, 2017.

Three years after the Occupy Central campaign, student leaders Joshua Wong, Nathan Law and Alex Chow are in jail for their roles in the democracy protests.

Now the pro-Beijing camp has shifted its focus to Benny Tai, a law professor at the University of Hong Kong (HKU) and a co-founder of the Occupy Central movement.

Recently, pro-Beijing lawmaker Junius Ho said he might seek an injunction to stop Tai from teaching at HKU. He posted on his social media page a letter to HKU to that effect.

In addition, Ho organized an online petition urging the public to support the sacking of Tai. The petition was peppered with questions such as “do you want Hong Kong to face disturbance?”, “do you want students to be misled into breaking the law?”, “do you agree that law professors are inciting the public to break the law?”

According to local newspapers, the online petition has drawn more than 30,000 signatures out of a target of 40,000, putting pressure on HKU to take action before Tai is proven guilty in court.

On Wednesday, outgoing vice chancellor Peter Mathieson, said that he had received a handful of requests to sack Tai. Mathieson did not say who sent the letters but said he had read them and respected their opinions but added he didn’t agree with all of them.

“We have our procedures for taking action against students and staff if we think they infringe the regulations of the university. But we are not a surrogate courtroom,” Mathieson said. “The court has its own opportunity to make decisions about guilt or innocence and we respect those decisions.”

It seems that the pro-Beijing camp worked behind the scenes by mobilizing their supporters to write letters to press for the sacking of Tai. That’s what they can do to show their loyalty to the authorities before the court even makes a judgment.

In March, Tai and other participants in the Occupy campaign were charged by the police. Tai, together with the Rev. Chu Yiu-ming and Dr. Chan Kin-man, faces three counts including conspiracy to commit public nuisance, inciting others to commit public nuisance, and inciting others to incite others to commit public nuisance, starting from March 27, 2013, when they published their Occupy manifesto in local newspapers, until December 2, 2014, when they turned themselves into police custody during the Occupy campaign.

Given Tai and other participants joined the campaign by way of civil disobedience, they did prepare themselves for punishment including a jail term. But the pro-Beijing camp forgot that the court is yet to start hearing the case.

All those charged are presumed innocent until proven guilty. It is quite a dangerous precedent for Ho to ask HKU to remove Tai before he is proven guilty.

In fact, after the Court of Appeal accepted the government’s request to give harsher punishment to the three student activists, the public expected Tai and other leaders to face imprisonment.

In the judgment that sentenced the student leaders to the jail, Justice Wally Yeung said that some people, including academics, promote slogans to encourage others to break the law. Yeung also said these people “publicly express contempt of the law, [and] not only do they refuse to admit that their illegal activity is wrong, but they even view it as honorable or proud acts. These arrogant, self-righteous thoughts, unfortunately have an impact on some young people, causing them to casually commit acts which destroy public order and peace during gatherings or demonstrations. This case is a perfect example of this unhealthy trend.”

Since Yeung’s judgment has become a precedent for the lower courts, Tai and other leaders in the campaign could face a harsher punishment.

From a legal perspective, Yeung’s judgment may not have political considerations but his example of “unhealthy trend” pointed the finger at Tai for his civil disobedience campaign.

There was no question that Tai and other activists would be involved in such social campaign three years ago to show their democratic advocacy. But bear in mind that whether they are guilty is determined by the courts, not by political figures or key opinion leaders on the internet.

Paul Shieh, former chairman of the Hong Kong Bar Association, said that civil disobedience is important because one day Hong Kong may have laws or systems that are so harsh that people have to resort to civil disobedience to oppose them.

However, Shieh was also critical of Tai and his interpretation of civil disobedience. He said that in 2015, there were a lot of people who took creative liberties with the idea of civil disobedience, and this included Tai. He said Tai has a lot to answer for.

Now that Tai is being labeled guilty before his case is heard, who can promise him and other activists that they will have a fair trial?

- (Silent Majority for HK) By Chris Wat Wing-yin. August 31, 2017.

School is starting. My friend's child was just accepted this year by the Hong Kong University School of Law. This was supposed to be a good thing, but the parents are despondent: "We have the sense that we are delivering a lamb into the tiger's mouth."

It is no wonder because the Hong Kong University School of Law has the Super Brainwashing Trio of Professor Johannes Chan, Associate Professor Benny Tai and Senior Lecturer Cheung Tat-ming, plus any number of Yellow Ribbon teachers, alumni and fellow students. It will be hard for a freshman to elude this Big Brainwashing Machine.

Once upon a time, people admired the Hong Kong University School of Law. If you have a child studying there, everyone will say: "Awesome! Bright kid! Unlimited future!" But today, there is nothing left but insults and sighs. So when my friend said that his child is a Hong Kong University School of Law student, everybody offers sympathy for the tragedy.

Undeniably, Benny Tai contributed to the demise of the Hong Kong University School of Law from a Gold Standard to an Evil Cult. From the moment when he called out "Occupy Central has officially begun", he has educated several generations of brainwashed foot soldiers.

Recently Legislative Councilor Junius Ho Kwan-yiu wrote to the Hong Kong University as well as started a civilian signature campaign to ask the university not to let Benny Tai teach people to "achieve justice by violating the law." Ho said: "In January 2013, Benny Tai wrote in the Economic Journal to advocate civil disobedience. This is four years later. There was no way to stop his action for four years already. I think that this is regrettable and should not be allowed to go on."

We have almost forgotten that it has been four years already. During these four years, students have been brainwashed to become cannon fodder for democracy.

If a teacher were charged with rape, the school will suspect this teacher in order to protect the students. If a police officer were charged with criminal activities, the police force will suspend the police officer from law enforcement duties. By the same reasoning, if a law professor were charged with violating the law, do you think that he should continue to teach law?

School is starting. the Super Brainwashing Trio can't wait to get started. The Hong Kong University School of Law is holding an open course for young people, with the title of "Rule of Law and Hong Kong Society." It will be taught by Benny Tai beginning in September, covering: obeying the law; social stability; responsibilities and duties; judicial independence; fair trials; ...

Why is someone being charged with violating the law teaching you law? Why is someone who advocates violating the law teaching you to obey the law? Why is someone who criticizes the judges teaching you on judicial independence and fair trials? Why is someone who instigated the blocking of streets for 79 days teaching  you about social stability? ... What kind of course is this? What kind of education is this?

- (Headline Daily) By Chris Wat Wing-yin. August 31, 2017.

After the Civic Square 3 were sent off to jail, Benny Tai jumped out to cast doubts on the judges and their judgments. He pronounced that Rule of Law is Dead. Past and current chairpersons of the Hong Kong Bar Association came out to rebut him. Benny Tai fought back. And now former Chief Justice Andrew Li has come out to denounce Benny Tai ...

In the face of the barrage from these heavyweights, Benny Tai has gone quiet. Instead, God's spokesperson retired Archbishop Joseph Zen had popped out to criticize Andrew Li: "There is no evidence whatsoever for what he said ... climbing into Civic Square is actually an extremely moderate and symbolic action ... the judges did not seem to know what civil disobedience is ..."

Judges, barristers and solicitors are supposed to be cool, calm and collected people. But this catfight between the Archbishop and Chief Justice shows that everybody is upset.

Why? Because several so-called legal scholars wanted to interpret the law and direct the judges according to their own political proclivities. Now they can criticize CY Leung, they can criticize Carrie Lam, they can criticize Tung Chee-hwa, they can criticize the Chinese Communist Party and the judges and lawyers won't react. But when they move in to attack the professionalism and positions of the judges and lawyers, there will be a strong reaction.

Yesterday Hong Kong University vice-chancellor Peter Mathieson said that the Univesity has no right to interfere with what their teachers do outside the university. But when someone whom the entire legal field is up in arms against is teaching law at your university, does the University still not care? When the judges and lawyers parade out one after another to denounced your law professor for the preposterousness of his legal arguments, should the university still let him teach law to the future generation of lawyers and judges?

- (Hong Kong Free Press) August 30, 2017.

Hong Kong University Students’ Union President Wong Ching-tak said in his inauguration speech that he was given a definition of democracy by teachers in secondary school to allow him to tackle questions in a public exam. “But when I got into this university, I learn[t] the truth that there is simply no definition [of] democracy, and you can only acquaint yourself with the concept if you start to comprehend the various interpretations.

“Searching for the truth is particularly important when we’re now in a time of delusion and deception… We are told that we are born intrinsically and essentially as Chinese, regardless of our cultural backgrounds and our sense of belonging. We are told that [the] separation of powers never existed in Hong Kong and the Legislative Council and the court should cooperate with the government.”

“And we are told that rule of law simply means abiding by the law, and civil disobedience to unjust laws is an unhealthy trend. We are now facing official narratives from the government that are full of lies and fabrication,” he said.

“So this is very important for us – to search for the truth and learn the truth. Learn what democracy can be. What rule of law truly means. Learn what a nation is… this is the only way that we stay who we are instead of becoming people that are obedient and subservient to the regime.”

Wong also urged the students not to turn a blind eye to “things that are not right,” such as the fact that the University of Hong Kong council consists mostly of pro-government individuals from outside the school.

Wong said that students could choose to turn a blind eye to land policy issues, avoid criticising the government, and ignore that Chinese laws will be implemented in Hong Kong – referring to the controversial joint checkpoint arrangement for the high-speed rail. “Probably you will still be living fine in Hong Kong… but then one day, the things that you take for granted will disappear.”

Wong also told students that although Chief Executive Carrie Lam is an alumna of the university, so are activists Alex Chow, Edward Leung, Billy Fung, and Colman Li. “They’re the people we should be learning from.”

- Students should not turn a blind eye to "things that are not right." I completely agree -- it was not right to occupy Central for 79 days! That is why I demand justice and I want it NOW!

- What can be learned from Alex Chow, Edward Leung, Billy Fung and Colman Li? If you try to "achieve justice by violating the law," you can be sent to jail. Has this lesson sunk in yet?

- What can be learned from Alex Chow, Edward Leung, Billy Fung and Colman Li? There are two types of "students leaders" -- those who lead the charge at the police, and those who tell others to charge at the police.

Alex Chow was Type I when he climbed the wall to get into Civic Square, and later he became Type II during the Siege of Government Headquarters.

Edwad Leung was Type I at the Mong Kok riot, and he is Type II nowadays because his priority is not to be remanded to custody.

Billy Fung and Colman Li were Type I at the siege of the Hong Kong University Council and they are awaiting sentencing.

What can be learned from other prominent Hong Kong University student leaders? Former Student Union presidents Yvonne Leung and Althea Suen are Type II all-talk-but-no-action and have no legal troubles. And so is Wong Ching-tak so far.

- (Economic Times) August 31, 2017.

Question: A legislator has written to Hong Kong University as well as started an online signature campaign to demand Hong Kong University dismiss Benny Tai? What is your position?

Results (3,171 voters):
79%: Support dismissal
20%: Oppose dismissal
1%: No opinion

(SCMP) August 31, 2017.

One of two mainland Chinese hikers who prompted a major rescue operation after running into trouble on a Hong Kong cliff side in the middle of a raging storm has written an emotional letter to his saviours to apologise for all the trouble they caused.

The letter, in Chinese and addressed to the Fire Services Department and “other relevant departments”, said the pair would never forget the rescuers’ kindness and praised them for their professionalism.

The apology came after the hikers, a 31-year-old man and a 47-year-old woman, sparked public outrage for wasting valuable resources and endangering the lives of emergency personnel after they became stranded on Kowloon Peak while Severe Tropical Storm Pakhar was lashing Hong Kong last weekend.

The rescue operation took more than 24 hours, with 160 firefighters, 10 ambulances and 31 fire engines deployed to pluck them to safety from a steep slope dubbed “suicide cliff”.

Four firefighters had to use their raincoats as a makeshift tent and spend a night on the cliff side to keep the hikers alive.

A source involved in the exercise said the four at one point sent a “Mayday” signal, raising fears at the fire department that their lives were in danger.

The author of the letter, which was also posted on a popular Facebook page for firefighters, identified himself as the male hiker and recalled that his friend was unable to walk after she fell.

“Thanks go to the members of the Fire Services Department who braved the wind and rain, regardless of their own safety, and led us away from that dangerous place,” he wrote.

“It is not an overstatement to say that you gave us our lives back. And it was achieved by you risking your own lives. We will never forget your kindness to us.”

He admitted they should not have ventured out when the No 1 typhoon warning signal was already in force. They had to sit out the storm on the cliff side after it worsened and the signal was upgraded to No 8.

The peak they were climbing is the highest on the Kowloon Peninsula and is classed by hikers as advanced level.

“We should have cancelled the plan. But we chose to go ahead, and, more stupidly, we chose a route we had never taken before.”

The letter expressed their guilt and shame in front of “all Hong Kong people”.

“As tourists, we not only used up valuable resources and gave trouble to the people of Hong Kong, but also, more importantly, we let so many firefighters risk their lives to save us. That made us feel too ashamed to face you.”

The letter gave special thanks to the firemen who reached them on Saturday night and only left the cliff side on Sunday afternoon when the No 8 signal was lowered.

“They accompanied us overnight, in wind and rain. Risking flash floods, they did not give us up ... ‘Thank you’ is too light a phrase to express the profound gratitude we want to express.”

The letter went on to state: “[The rescuers] did not blame us. Instead, they tried all along to comfort us and give us confidence. The first fireman, upon reaching us, told us: ‘There is no need to blame yourselves. The most important thing is that you are safe and OK.’”

The woman had to be stretchered to safety, posing huge difficulties for rescuers who had to battle gale force winds and torrential rain.

The pair were sent to hospital on Sunday evening and discharged the following day.

Firefighters’ unions have refrained from criticising the two, stating instead that their resources and efforts were never wasted when saving lives.

Einstein taught us: It's all relative.

The first point of comparison is with the Tai Mo Shan woman. She famously said to the Hong Kong police:  "We will be responsible if we run into danger. Our lives belong to ourselves" and "It is your job to rescue people." 

The second point of comparison is the case of the two shy ex-pats (The Standard, September 1, 2017).

Firefighters early yesterday rescued two expatriate men who were trapped on Lion Rock.

The two - surnamed Smith, 28, and Thomas, 29 - were trapped on Wednesday evening when their ropes got caught on rocks as they were descending. Police received a call about 10.40pm and officers, firefighters and members of the high-angle rescue team, were dispatched to rescue them. The two climbers also turned on their torches to help the rescue team find them.

Firefighters spent about six hours before plucking the men to safety around 3am. Both were unhurt and refused to be sent to hospital.

To avoid photographers they asked the ambulancemen for blankets and masks and left in a police car.

Q1. Some people say: The Basic Law says that national law is not used in Hong Kong. Therefore, setting up a mainland port area inside the West Kowloon Station will be a violation of the Basic Law. Other people say: As long as the Central Government authorizes, Hong Kong can enact law to allow for a mainland port area under mainland law without violating the Basic Law. Which side do you agree with?

37.4%: Agree with the former
42.0%: Agree with the latter
4.8%: Neither
15.5%: Don't know/no opinion
0.4%: Refused to answer

Q2. Some people say: The Shenzhen Bay port ahead has operated co-location since 2007, and therefore there is a precedent for co-location in West Kowloon Station. Other people say: Co-location in Shenzhen Bay is completely different from that in West Kowloon Station and not comparable at all. Which side do you agree with?

39.7%: Agree with the former
43.4%: Agree with the latter
4.0%: Neither
12.5%: Don't know/no opinion
0.4%: Refused to answer

Q3. Some people say: The benefits of the High Speed Rail cannot be fully realized without co-location in the Hong Kong section. Other people say: The negative impact of not having Hong Kong law in a designated area of the West Kowloon Station far outweighs any High Speed Rail benefit. Which side do you agree with?

48.8%: Agree with the former
33.5%: Agree with the latter
5.2%: Neither
11.9%: Don't know/no opinion
0.6%: Refused to answer

Q4. There are two co-location proposals: One proposal is to have all the mainland laws applicable in the mainland port area. The other proposal is to have only the relevant mainland laws applicable in the mainland port area. Which do you support more?

12.3%: All mainland laws apply
47.4%: Only some mainland laws are applicable
7.4%: Support both
19.5%: Support neither
12.5%: Don't know/no opinion
0.6%: Refused to answer

Q5. If the final decision was to implement only some mainland laws, will you still support co-location? (Base: Those who answered "all mainland laws apply" in Q4)

67.1%: Yes
16.3%: No
5.9%: Half-half
6.8%: Don't know/no opinion
3.9%: Refused to answer

Q6. If the final decision was to implement all mainland laws, will you still support co-location? (Base: Those who answered "only some mainland laws are applicable" in Q4)

34.8%: Yes
46.4%: No
8.6%: Half-half
9.1%: Don't know/no opinion
1.0%: Refused to answer

Q12. If co-location is ultimately adopted, will you ride the High Speed Rail?

54.4%: Yes
22.6%: No
16.9%: Possibly
5.2%: Don't know/no opinion
0.8%: Refused to answer

Comments:

- With respect to Q4-Q6, the government has stated that this is unworkable. Suppose that you insist that only mainland immigration/customs/quarantine laws are applicable in the port area and all other mainland laws are not applicable.

Consider a Xinjiang mass murderer uses a fake ID to get on the Beijing->Hong Kong High Speed Rail. He arrives in West Kowloon Station and is detected. He can be refused exit by the mainland immigration officer. But can he be arrested? His warrant was based upon the mainland criminal law code, and the mainland immigration/customs officers do not have the power to make arrests in Hong Kong. So they summon the Hong Kong Police. At which point, the suspect calls his lawyer to claim habeas corpus and apply for political asylum based upon religious persecution. There is no extradition arrangement between China and Hong Kong, so this man is either going to be free or else Hong Kong will have to hold him indefinitely until he agrees to return to mainland China.

But if all mainland laws are applicable in the West Kowloon Station, then this man can be arrested in the mainland port area and taken back to mainland China.

In Johannes Chan's hybrid co-location proposal, he solves this problem by placing co-location in Futian so that all mainland laws can apply. But the drawback is that it is inconvenient and time-wasting.

So Q4-Q6 are not matters for the public to state their preferences for. Co-location means having all mainland laws in the West Kowloon port area.

- Whether the citizens are ready or not, the Co-location Concern Group must continue to demonstrate and give the impression of popular opposition.


"Oppose Co-location"
Bicycle demonstration
Date: September 3 (Sunday)
Route: From Tai Wai to Tai Mei Tuk
Assembly Point: Tai Wai MTR Station Exit A
Time: 1:30pm

- Which genius picked the date when Tropical Cyclone (soon to be Typhoon) Mawar arrives in Hong Kong with a wind speed of 120 km/hr?

(Hong Kong Free Press) How can Hong Kong’s courts, gov’t, and media be so deaf to the global chorus of criticism? By Kent Ewing. August 28, 2017.

He died nearly 80 years ago and most of his theories have since been consigned to the rubbish bin, but Sigmund Freud, the polymath founder of psychoanalysis, certainly understood the stricken psyche of Hong Kong—a city currently so lost in the throes of denial that we appear to be living in an entirely different reality than the rest of the world.

How else to explain the self-protective fictions and delusions now being heaped upon us by our justice department, our representatives in the Legislative Council, our journalists and—yes—even by our vaunted independent (?) judiciary and the barristers and solicitors who ply their trade in our courts of law.

...

As criticism and condemnation ring out around the globe over the recent court decision to jail the three most prominent student leaders of the 2014 Occupy movement for six to eight months, the reaction at home has been to circle the rhetorical and psychological wagons. This turning inward makes it so much easier to deny the obvious but unsettling truth that much of the rest of humanity now sees Hong Kong as a place where practising the wrong brand of politics can cost you your freedom.

But who cares what leaders in the US congress and European parliaments think? What do they know?

And why worry about an open letter denouncing the ruling signed by 25 distinguished political, legal and religious figures, including former British foreign secretary Sir Malcolm Rifkind, South Korea’s Ambassador for International Human Rights, Jung-hoon Lee, and Cardinal Charles Maung Bo of Myanmar?

Most importantly, why listen to “uninformed” attacks in “biased” western media outlets such as that well-known tabloid rag, the New York Times? Fake news!

The big, bad world beyond the shores of Little Hong Kong is irredeemably confused and wrong-headed about our affairs. Foreigners with a distorted western mindset just don’t understand: Here, when idealistic young people climb fences that aren’t supposed to be there in order to start embarrassing protests that we don’t want to happen, they must be punished in accordance with our laws—which, of course, can and do change any time the powers that be in Beijing want them to.

Thus, this is how we respond to the chorus of disapproval that followed the jailing of Joshua Wong Chi-fung, the 20-year-old international face of Hong Kong’s beleaguered democracy movement, and his two Occupy Central compatriots, Nathan Law Kwun-chung, 24, and Alex Chow Yong-kang, 27:

...

Not to worry, the Freudian voices of denial console us. Everything will be fine. All we need is a little patriotic education.

The rest of the world is trying to tell us something; maybe we should listen.

Current Hong Kong judges are not going to comment in public. Their job is to adjudicate in accordance with the law; they don't need to get many more LIKE's in order to become Key Opinion Leaders. 

So far we know what three of them (Court of Appeal vice-president Mr Justice Wally Yeung Chun-kuen and Justices of Appeal Derek Pang Wai-cheong and Jeremy Poon Shiu-chor) think through their rulings on the cases of the Civic Square 3 and the North East New Territories 13. We also know what another three (Court of Final Appeal Chief Justice Geoggrey Ma Tao-Il, Justice Roberto Robeiro and Justice Joseph Fok think through their rulings on the case of DQ2.

But what about the legal profession? What they think about these judges and their rulings? Here is a summary for the Hong Kong Bar Association, the Law Society of Hong Kong, various past chairpersons of the Hong Kong Bar Association and one former Chief Justice.

Joint Statement of The Hong Kong Bar Association and The Law Society of Hong Kong in Response to Criticisms of Judicial Independence in Hong Kong

1. The Hong Kong Bar Association and the Law Society of Hong Kong note with great concern editorial comments and other opinions reported in some international and local media in respect of the Hong Kong Court of Appeal’s recent decisions in relation to applications for reviews of sentences in cases of unlawful assembly.

2. It is not the practice of the Hong Kong Bar Association or the Law Society of Hong Kong to comment on the merits of individual cases, which may be the subject of appeal, nor is it appropriate to do so.

3. We would, however, point out that the decisions by the Hong Kong Courts are made solely according to law upon applications by one party or the other. We see no indication otherwise in respect of the recent cases which have generated widespread comment. Whatever opinion one may hold about the appropriateness or otherwise of the sentences imposed, the individuals concerned were convicted and sentenced for crimes committed after having been accorded due process through the courts with proper access to legal representation.

4. Open and rational debate on the issues raised in individual cases is to be encouraged in a civil society.

5. However, unfounded comments that judicial decisions were made or influenced by political considerations originating outside Hong Kong are unjustified and damaging to our legal system, and to Hong Kong as a whole.

6. We repeat what the Hong Kong Bar Association and the Law Society of Hong Kong said on previous occasions:

“one must be careful and cautious when commenting on a court judgment and has to take into account the impact of such comment on the integrity and independence of the Judiciary. The bedrock to the rule of law in Hong Kong is the trust and confidence of the public and the international community towards our judges and the judicial system. Any inappropriate comment could fuel baseless and unnecessary suspicion on judicial independence, and may undermine the confidence of the public and the international community in the rule of law in Hong Kong....

We are fully confident that all judges in Hong Kong are capable of and will continue to abide by their judicial oath to uphold the Basic Law, bear allegiance to the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region of the People’s Republic of China, serve the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region conscientiously, dutifully, in full accordance with the law, honestly and with integrity, safeguard the law and administer justice without fear or favour, self-interest or deceit. We will do our utmost to safeguard judicial independence in Hong Kong.”(extracted from a statement issued by the Hong Kong Bar Association in February 2016 in response to statements that our courts passed unduly lenient sentences in public order cases)

“The Rule of Law, as well as an independence and professional Judiciary, are widely respected by the Hong Kong community. These are also regarded highly by the international community to be the cornerstone for economic success of Hong Kong. This high level of respect and the confidence in the Hong Kong judicial system are instilled through long judicial history, hard earned tradition and constitutional entrenchment, as well as the continual efforts of the distinguished and professional judges. This should not and can never be undermined or compromised or be dragged into the political arena.”(extracted from a statement issued by the Law Society of Hong Kong in September 2015)

(Hong Kong Economic Times) August 22, 2017.

Hong Kong Bar Association former chairman Paul W.T. Hsieh said that those civil disobedience practitioners who were sent to jail "got what they asked for." He questioned why this is being called "political prosecution" and why the courts are being accused of collusion. He said that these protestors would get more respect if they stick to their original intentions and "fearlessly" keep their promises.

(Apple Daily) August 20, 2017.

Hong Kong Bar Association former chairman and Civic Party current chairman Alan Leong posted on Facebook that Paul Hsieh evaded the fact that the original magistrate June Cheung Tin-ngan imposed light sentences on the Civic Square 3 by reason of law. Leong added that he does not agree that this was a "political prosecution" and he agreed that the Court of Appeal should not be accused of political considerations in determining the sentence. But this does not mean that the people of Hong Kong should accept Secretary for Justice Rimsky Yuen's relentless pursuit of the three idealistic, responsible and selfless young men. And it does not mean that one cannot point out possible errors committed by the Court of Appeal.

(Apple Daily) August 20, 2017.

Hong Kong Bar Association former chairman Ronny Tong Ka-wah said that he does not see the various defendants as "prisoners of conscience" or "political prisoners." He said that those assertions are completely baseless. He asked why anyone would think that democracy requires the destruction of rule-of-law?

Tong said that any discussion of the court rulings should consider whether rule-of-law has completely disintegrated in Hong Kong such that all the judges are under the control of the Central Government. After all, the international community (especially the Southeast Asian countries) has always considered the Hong Kong judiciary to be independent and the most perfect. So Tong is perplexed as to how the Hong Kong judiciary could suddenly have disintegrated overnight according to these critics.

Tong said that accusing judges of being under political control may constitute contempt of court. But if these critics are jailed, they will say that this is the proof of the suppression of freedom and democracy that they have been talking about. Tong said that we can disagree with the court rulings, or even think that they are wrong, but our discussion must be based upon evidence and reasoning. If you just accuse all the judges as being political stooges, this is not something Hong Kong can bear.

(HK01 https://www.hk01.com/%E6%B8%AF%E8%81%9E/114743/-%E9%9B%99%E5%AD%B8%E5%88%A4%E5%9B%9A-%E8%AD%9A%E5%85%81%E8%8A%9D-%E5%88%A4%E6%B1%BA%E7%90%86%E6%93%9A%E7%9B%B8%E7%95%B6%E5%85%85%E5%88%86-%E6%A8%99%E7%B1%A4-%E6%94%BF%E6%B2%BB%E7%8A%AF-%E6%98%AF%E9%81%8E%E6%BF%80 ) August 26, 2017.

Hong Kong Bar Association former chairperson Winnie Tam said on radio today that the ruling by the Court of Final Appeal has clearly and adequately given the reasoning.

As for the Secretary of Justice Rimsky Yuen going after the Civic Square 3 for political reasons, Winnie Tam said that she understands that some people are sympathetic towards the three young men. But she said that what Yuen did was fair under the law and he cannot be said to have evil intentions. As for Yuen overruling the Director of Public Prosecutions, Tam said the disclosure was unfair and that Yuen is the ultimate decision-maker. "I don't see anything wrong."

As for calling the three defendants "political prisoners," Tam thinks that this is going too far. She said that a political prisoner is a dissident who is being punished by the authorities for some completely different crime. She asked citizens to respect the courts. "You cannot just applaud when you like a verdict, but say that the judges have been turned 'red' when you dislike a verdict." She said that such talk is "unacceptable."

- Suppose that Rimsky Yuen did overrule the Director of Public Prosecutions as the leaks says. That is, the Director of Public Prosecutions said that the government has no chance or that the government should avoid this type of case for political reason, but Yuen held the opposite opinion.

If the government loses its case, then Yuen made a bad political judgment.

But now the government wins its case. This shows that Yuen was right and the Director of Public Prosecutions was wrong. So why is Yuen still being second-guessed?

(HK01 https://www.hk01.com/%E6%B8%AF%E8%81%9E/114743/-%E9%9B%99%E5%AD%B8%E5%88%A4%E5%9B%9A-%E8%AD%9A%E5%85%81%E8%8A%9D-%E5%88%A4%E6%B1%BA%E7%90%86%E6%93%9A%E7%9B%B8%E7%95%B6%E5%85%85%E5%88%86-%E6%A8%99%E7%B1%A4-%E6%94%BF%E6%B2%BB%E7%8A%AF-%E6%98%AF%E9%81%8E%E6%BF%80 ) August 26, 2017.

Hong Kong Bar Association current chairman Paul T.K. Lam said that some people are critical of the Court of Appeal for its ruling on the Civic Square 3, including whether political influence was present and whether the judiciary has come under Central Government control and lost its independence.

Lam emphasized that "all criticisms about lack of judicial independence and lack of integrity among the judges are inappropriate and problematic." Lam said that rule-of-law is precious and needs to be protected. "Reputation is of paramount importance" and unfounded criticisms will make people believe it and influence the outside world's perception of rule of law in Hong Kong. Citizens may also lose respect and confidence in the courts. Lam is worried that this may become a self-fulfilling prophecy.

Lam said that the Joint Statement of the Bar Association and the Law Society emphasized that they saw the court rulings as being based upon applications of the law and "not on factors outside the law or legal reasoning." Lam said that the two organizations had to be concerned professionally about outside criticisms of the Court of Appeal's rulings.

(SCMP) August 27, 2017.

Former Chief Justice Andrew Li Kwok-nang told This Week In Asia: “The allegation that the Court of Appeal’s judgment on the sentences for the demonstrators was politically motivated was totally without any foundation. Such an allegation can have the effect of undermining public confidence in the independence of the judiciary. It was an irresponsible allegation which should never have been made.”

He speaks for many in the legal profession who, whether they agree with the jail terms or not, see no evidence of political interference and regard such suggestions as absurd.

Not a single one of them thought that the rulings were not in accordance with the law. So everybody in the entire legal sector is in self-denial.

- Worse yet, none of these people concur with the New York Times that Joshua Wong, Nathan Law and Alex Chow should get the Nobel Peace Prize.

- If you insist that that rule of law is dead in Hong Kong because the courts are now controlled by the Chinese Communists, then there are some logical consequences:

The first question is: How extensive is the rot? So far, we know that six judges are Communist stooges: Court of Appeal vice-president Mr Justice Wally Yeung Chun-kuen and Justices of Appeal Derek Pang Wai-cheong and Jeremy Poon Shiu-chor because of their rulings on the cases of the Civic Square 3 and the North East New Territories 13, plus Court of Final Appeal Chief Justice Geoffrey Ma Tao-Il, Justice Roberto Ribeiro and Justice Joseph Fok because of their rulings on the case of the DQ2.

Here is the roster of the Court of Final Appeal:

We now know that Geoffrey Ma is a Chinese Communist stooge.

We are know that Roberto Ribeiro and Joseph Fok are Chinese Communist stooges.

There are 4 Australians and 8 Brits among the 12 Non-Permanent Judges of the Court of Final Appeal. How many of these are Chinese Communist stooges? All of them? Or just some of them? If just some of them, then which ones?

So the second question is: How do you identify the Chinese Communist stooges and purge them from the judiciary?

Previously, Hong Kong did not have anyone like the courageous Senator Joseph McCarthy to warn us about Chinese Communist infiltration into the Hong Kong judiciary. Those Chinese Communist infiltrators from Australia and United Kingdom were meticulously covering their tracks so that no one was aware of the scope of the infiltration before August 15, 2017. Therefore reviewing their past rulings will not give clear indication about who is a Chinese Communist stooge.

So the best approach is to apply a litmus test: Judges at all levels from the Court of Final Appeal down will be given the Joshua Wong-Nathan Law-Alex Chow case file and ask: "How would you rule?"

If you rule to overturn the ruling of magistrate June Cheung Tin-ngan in the manner of Justices Wally Yeung Chun-kuen, Derek Pang Wai-cheong and Jeremy Poon Shiu-chor, you are a Chinese Communist stooge and you will be removed from office. All your previous rulings will be reviewed for similar biases.

If you rule to uphold the ruling of magistrate June Cheung Tin-ngan, it does not mean that you are clean because you can be lying for this litmus test. You will be given a temporary respite to stay at your post, conditional upon your future rulings giving maximum weight to the noble ideals of pro-democracy/pro-freedom activists. Failure in any case would mean instant removal from office.

In this manner, we will demonstrate to the western world and the western media that rule-of-law is alive and well in Hong Kong, and therefore international investors can continue to pour their investments here.

At this point, I will stop. I am only joking here. If such a litmus test were applied, the judiciary would resign en masse because this is the worst attack on rule of law ever.

- The Wall Street Journal article on August 17, 2017 was titled "Hong Kong’s Political Prisoners: China forces local judges to send democratic activists to jail." You read through the article to find out how China forces the local judges to do their bidding and you find ... nothing. The closest evidence that was offered was that Zhang Dejiang showed upon in May and "said that the judiciary is subordinate to the executive branch and judges should 'learn the Basic Law.' Other officials criticized Hong Kong's use of foreign judges, who are supposedly too sympathetic to separatist elements." How do you leapfrog from the statements of Zhang and other officials to them "forcing the local judges to send democratic activists to jail"?

- What is the nature of the force used? Tickling their feet? Stapling their thighs? Threatening to break their fingers? Drown their babies? Kill their families? What?

- In the newspaper industry, the stories are written by reporters and the headlines are written by editors. Very often, the headlines go far beyond what is supportable by the contents in the stories. This is one case. The headline will gain a lot of clicks but there is nothing in the story.

- With due respect, I cannot imagine Lord Hoffmann and the other 17 non-permanent Australian/British judges of the Court of Final Appeal will pay any attention to what Chinese Communist apparatchik Zhang Dejiang have to say or give up their lifetime accomplishments, reputations and legacies?

- (Wen Wei Po) September 4, 2017.

Wong On-yin's Facebook

Judges were always only just one part of rule-of-law. Only Hongkongers think that judges are sacrosanct and the Chief Justice is like a God to be much adored. Therein lies the root of the troubles. Suddenly now Hongkongers have discovered tht the God-almighty Chief Justice Geoffrey Ma Tao-li is an accessory to the tyrants and not the Guardian of Hong Kong. What is to be done? What else except to rise up and bring him down. There is no monarchy in politics, so there shouldn't be a monarchy in the judiciary either.

Where do Hong Kong judges come from? This is a self-breeding system in which respect is not automatically granted. In the past, the judges are respected because they act fairly and reflect the social values of the majority in an undemocratic system. But this is not automatic. There is no guarantee, not even a monitoring impeachment system, that this will always be the case. If we do not rise up and bring down Geoffrey Ma, then nobody can save Hong Kong.

I am not calling on everybody to use force. That would be uncivilized. But showing the facts, talking reason and demonstrating in the streets are non-violent resistance. So why not? Today, Hong Kong lacks most of all those who have studied law to come out and denounce Geoffrey Ma and the Court of Appeal judges. There are plenty of people in the legal sector who want citizens not to consider right versus wrong but only to adore rule-of-law. If we don't wake up today, there will be more cruel and excessive abuse of judicial power tomorrow.


Photo of Secretary for Justice Rimsky Yuen, Chief Justice Geoffrey Ma and Hong Kong Bar Association chairperson Winnie Tam, with their faces crossed out and one big "Fuck You!!!" underneath.

- Contempt of court is an offense under common law. In the past, insulting a judge or otherwise acting to interfere with the judicial process is punishable by a maximum of 2 years in jail or $5,000 fine.

- (EJ Insight) How to preserve confidence in our courts. By Benny Tai. September 5, 2017.

The fact that the Court of Appeal has overruled the magistrates’ court over a trespassing case involving three student leaders and sentenced them to jail has sparked a heated controversy.

A lot of people have raised doubts about the new verdict, and there is a widespread suspicion that the judges of the Court of Appeal could have been influenced by political factors.

Amid grave public concern, several heavyweights in the legal sector, including former chief justice Andrew Li Kwok-nang, quickly rallied to the defense of the court, asserting that public suspicions about the motives of the judges are completely unfounded and unjustified.

I don’t intend to argue whether the judges of the Court of Appeal could have been subject to political pressure in this particular case. While I agree with these heavyweights that upholding the authority of the judiciary is instrumental in maintaining the rule of law, I do feel compelled to take issue with their notion that the public should never ever doubt the independence and impartiality of our judges.

In fact, the so-called “authority” of our courts of law stems entirely from the righteousness of the decisions it made; whether or not there is public criticism of our judges is irrelevant.

As long as our courts can convince the public that the rulings are fair and just, and that judges only take into account nothing but legal factors when making their decisions, the public will have trust in our judiciary.

If the public senses that our judges aren’t making their decisions fairly and impartially, they will inevitably have doubts about their motives. And even though the courts could reduce members of the public to silence temporarily by threatening them with contempt of court charges, silence does not mean the public trusts the courts.

It often takes years, if not decades, to build the authority of and public trust in our courts, but at the same time, it only takes a very short amount of time to ruin everything.

That said, I believe members of the legal profession who are truly committed to defending the authority of our judiciary and our rule of law should speak out against the courts over mistakes and call for immediate corrective actions rather than pointing the finger at the average individuals who blow the whistle on the questionable decisions by our judges.

At the end of the day, the authority of our courts rests upon public confidence in our judicial system, not public silence over its wrong and unjust rulings.

Turning a blind eye to an unjust decision made by the court might not have instant repercussions on society, but if we let things continue this way, judges may think they can disregard the oversight by fellow legal professionals. There could be more unjust decisions. Eventually, that will take an irreversible toll on public confidence in our judiciary.

Meanwhile, I notice that there has been a prevailing notion among the legal profession that our judges are always incorruptible and able to resist any form of external interference so much so that public oversight of our judiciary is unnecessary, and that nobody should ever have even the slightest shred of doubt about our judges’ impartiality and judgment.

However, I find their excessive and unquestioning confidence in our judges incomprehensible and even irrational.

Like everyone else, judges are humans, and as long as you are human, you can’t be completely immune to things like political pressure, or the temptation of using your power to serve your own agenda. And that is why judges need oversight.

And as rule of law is among the most treasured core values of Hong Kong, I believe it is the responsibility of all citizens, not just the legal professionals, to uphold and defend the rule of law by staying vigilant and not hesitating to call out unjust or questionable decisions.

Perhaps members of our legal sector should focus more on how to restore public confidence in our judicial system rather than criticizing those who have the courage to cast doubts on the questionable decisions by our courts.

- At this time, there is no evidence whatsoever that any judge is a Chinese Communist stooge. Not even Civic Party chairman Alan Leong would say so. Senator Joseph McCarthy was at least waving a piece of paper which he said had the names of 205 (or 57, or 81, or 10 at various other times) State Department employees who were members of the Communist Party USA.

- Alan Leong knows that if he names any judge as a Chinese Communist stooge without evidence, it will be cause for a Barristers Disciplinary Tribunal for professional misconduct leading to suspension from practice. The New York Times/The Wall Street Journal have no such fears.

- Alan Leong is in a quandary. If he accepts the thesis that rule-of-law is dead in Hong Kong, then the next step is armed revolution to sweep aside all branches of the government (executive, legislative and judicial). His own law practice would be wiped out because there won't be any courts left.

The farthest Alan Leong has gone is to say that Wally Yeung's language in the ruling was emotional and that makes him unfit for the office. "The dead branch on a tree should be lobbed off." But he will not come out and call Yeung a Chinese Communist running dog.

- The best concrete evidence presented so far is that Court of Appeal vice-president Mr Justice Wally Yeung Chun-kuen attended the 2015 Christmas cocktail party held by The Small and Medium Law Firms Association of Hong Kong (see Lam, Lee and Lai Solicitors and Notaries) with food, drinks and music for several hundred people including Chief Executive CY Leung and Secretary for Justice Rimsky Yuen, and the Association's founding president Maggie Chan Man-ki was the legal counsel for the plaintiff Chiu Luen Public Light Bus to clear the protestors off the streets of Mong Kok (see SCMP). This is not even tenuous.

- An open letter denouncing the ruling signed by 25 distinguished political, legal and religious figures, including former British foreign secretary Sir Malcolm Rifkind, South Korea’s Ambassador for International Human Rights, Jung-hoon Lee, and Cardinal Charles Maung Bo of Myanmar?

- The 64-page ruling has been published only in Chinese (see Judiciary.hk). Do these 25 distinguished political, legal and religious figures read Chinese legalese? Or did they denounce a ruling that they never read? Or did they get a summary from Voice of America?

- Here is Court of Appeal vice-president Wally Yeung's contribution to the judgment:

1. I have considered the judgment drawn up by Poon JA and the multitude of cases cited by him. I concur with his judgment as well as his reasons for judgment.

2. I should reiterate that pursuant to the Basic Law and the Hong Kong Bill of Rights Ordinance, Hong Kong residents enjoy the freedoms of assembly, speech, procession, demonstration and expression of opinions. The basic freedoms conferred on Hong Kong residents are comprehensive and in no way lesser than the freedoms enjoyed by people of other advanced and free societies.

3. However, the aforementioned freedoms are not absolute or unrestricted; they are subject to the supervision of the law. Hong Kong residents are obliged to observe the laws that are in force in Hong Kong, and the exercise of the rights conferred by law is by no means a reason or excuse for doing illegal acts. Any act of protest or demonstration for which the police have not issued a Notice of No Objection, or in which violence or the threat of violence is used to express one’s opinions, crosses the boundary of the peaceful exercise of the rights and enters the territory of unlawful activities; it becomes an unlawful act which interferes with the rights and freedoms of others.

4. The lawful exercise of rights conferred by law, and the protection of the enjoyment of rights and freedoms by others according to law, co-exist with each other without conflict, and should be a symbol of a civilised society which upholds the rule of law.

5. Acts done in the name of the free exercise of rights, but which are in substance acts which undermine public order and breach the peace, will throw society into chaos, impact seriously and adversely on its progress and development, and prevent others from exercising and enjoying the rights and freedoms to which they are entitled. If such acts cannot be effectively stopped, then all discussion about freedom and the rule of law will become empty talk.

6. In recent years, an unhealthy wind has been blowing in Hong Kong. Some people, on the pretext of pursuing their ideals or freely exercising their rights conferred by law, have acted wantonly in an unlawful manner. Certain people, including individuals of learning, advocate “achieving justice by violating the law” and, under this slogan, they encourage others to break the law. These people openly flout the law. Not only do they refuse to admit their lawbreaking activities are wrong, but they even go as far as regarding such activities as a source of honour and pride. It is unfortunate that such arrogant and conceited ways of thinking have influenced some young people and have caused them to engage as they please in activities that are damaging the public order and disruptive of the peace at assemblies, processions or demonstrations.

7. This case is an excellent example of the influence of the trend that is mentioned. All three respondents are backbone members of young people organisations. In the name of their organisations, having obtained a Notice of No Objection from the police, they organised an assembly at the section off Tim Mei Road outside the Forecourt of the Central Government Offices (Forecourt) on the night of 26 September 2014, and successfully attracted the participation of hundreds of citizens, especially young people and students. With full knowledge that the assembly had to end at 10 pm, they conferred and reached a consensus in advance that they would force their way into the Forecourt at the conclusion of the assembly, claiming that they were going to “recapture the Civic Square”.

8. Before 26 September 2014, the Hong Kong Federation of Students (HKFS) had made two applications to the Administration Wing, requesting the opening-up of the Civic Square for public activities from 23 September to early October 2014. However, these applications were rejected. Therefore, at the time the three respondents reached the above consensus, they had full knowledge that the Civic Square would be closed and guarded by security guards.

9. The three respondents should also have been aware that many, especially young people, would participate in the assembly on 26 September 2014. Obviously, it was their wish to rely on the participation of these people to achieve their purpose of “recapturing the Civic Square” by sheer force in numbers.

10. The three respondents must have been aware that when crowds of people forced their way into the Civic Square, clashes between them and the security guards guarding the Civic Square would be inevitable, and that casualties as well as damage to property were highly likely.

11. The three respondents had at the pre-action meeting discussed the criminal liability of the participants, and subsequently distributed copies of “Points to Note When Under Arrest” to them. This made clear their awareness that their planned action was unlawful, but they still participated in and/or incited others, especially young students, to take part in the unlawful action. It was extremely irresponsible of the three respondents to call upon or incite young students to violate the law, the consequences of which may become lifelong regrets of these young students.

12. The claim by the three respondents that they were going to “recapture the Civic Square” by way of the zero-violence principle of “peace, rationality and non-violence” was nothing but empty talk, something to which they paid lip service and a slogan by which they deluded themselves and others.

13. In the face of clear and undeniable evidence from the prosecution, the three respondents had refused to plead guilty. In fact, to date, they still refuse to admit that they had done anything wrong. They argue that they had acted out of their concerns for social issues, as well as their passion for politics and ideals. The assertion that they are remorseful is strained and totally unconvincing. There is no conflict between their concerns for social issues and passion for politics and ideals on the one hand, and the need for them to abide by the law on the other.

14. I concur with the judgment of Poon JA. The offences committed by the three respondents are serious for which deterrence is justified.

15. I am of the view that given the nature of these offences, the mode in which they were committed and the attitude of the three respondents, sentencing them by way of a community service order or suspended sentence is in contravention of sentencing principles; it is acutely inadequate and cannot possibly reflect the gravity of the offences.

16. In my judgment, the only appropriate sentence is a short term of immediate imprisonment. I have to emphasize that if the sentences imposed by this court do not suffice to deter similar offences, the court may need to resort to sentences of even greater deterrent effect to uphold the dignity of the rule of law.

17. It gives me absolutely no pleasure in coming to a sentence that would send young people with aspirations and ideals to prison. However, this court is duty-bound to send a clear message to the public that when taking part in assemblies, processions, demonstrations or like activities, in the free exercise of their rights, participants must abide by the law and must not cause any damage to public order and public peace. All acts of violence, especially acts of violence which involve the charging at or assaulting law-enforcement officers and personnel responsible for maintaining order, will be met by a substantial sentence; otherwise there will be no social accord or social progress, and citizens’ rights and freedoms as safeguarded by law may altogether vanish.

- (The New York Times) Like Andrei Sakharov, Vaclav Havel, Augn San Suu Kyi and so many dissidents before them, the men were hit with a bogus charge ("unlawful assembly") ...

This shows the lack of familiarity with the details of the trials. Before the incident even began, the defendants said that this was civil disobedience which involves breaking the law in order to achieve justice. That is, they knew that they are breaking the law. The facts around the case were never in dispute, as all parties accept that the law had been broken as recorded on videos from surveillance cameras and media coverage. "Unlawful assembly" comes from British law, not Chinese Communist law. You can go tell the Brits that they have a bogus law. The central debate was about the relative importance of the motives in determining the sentence. The magistrate in the original trial gave high weight to the nobility of motives, and therefore imposed only community service/suspended jail sentence. The defendants did not even appeal the sentences. The government appealed to the Court of Appeal which ruled that violent acts should be penalized more severely for deterrence.

- (SCMP) Democracy and human rights are vital for the rule of law – and so is legality. By Ken Macdonald. September 4, 2017.

The rule of law is not a moveable feast. You can’t invoke it when it suits you and then spurn it when it doesn’t. It combines democracy, human rights and legality. The first two are easy: everyone believes in democracy and human rights, don’t they? But what of legality? This is much harder and poses a greater challenge, a greater test of loyalty to principle.

In a rule-of-law system, it is obviously not just the law that counts. After all, a tyranny can easily create oppressive laws to build dictatorship. So the law must be borne out of democratic accountability and loyalty to human rights. That’s how it earns respect.

But the corollary is that laws legitimised in this way must be carefully respected. This is because in a rule-of-law system, the organised abuse of law is a form of tyranny in itself, an attack upon the rules that exist to grant ultimate protection for rights. This is what legality means and, however hard it may sometimes be, loyalty to legality is fundamental to showing fealty to the rule of law.

In the UK, as in Hong Kong, a prosecutor may appeal against a sentence he believes to be unduly lenient. The UK attorney general sometimes invokes this power and the English Court of Appeal from time to time increases sentences at his urging. The proceedings will always take place in public, with a represented defendant, before the senior, independent judiciary. It is a process of open justice, respectful of rights and according to law.

In Hong Kong, the situation is no different. Here, the secretary for justice may appeal against a sentence he believes to have been manifestly inadequate. If he does so, the case will be considered in the Hong Kong Court of Appeal, before senior, independent judges, sitting in public. The defendant will be fully represented. Again, this process unfolds strictly according to law.

Judges, both in the UK and in Hong Kong, sometimes make decisions that are unpopular with some sections of the public. Usually, if the court had made the opposite decision, a different section of the public would be outraged.

This is why it is fortunate that judges pay no attention to public opinion when they adjudicate. It is easy to see that if courts judged according to public feeling, a frightening new form of tyranny would be born: mob rule. There would be no rule of law at all.

Of course, it is perfectly fine for people to take issue with the rulings of judges and to express their disagreement forcefully. That is what free speech means: the right to express yourself freely. And judges have thick skins. But when disagreement strays into attacking a legitimate and universally recognised process of law, such as a prosecutor’s right of appeal, or the personal integrity of the judges deciding the case, it is not really that legal process or those judges being attacked, it is the rule of law itself. People engaged in these rhetorical assaults risk undermining the very values they claim to defend.

An invasion of a secure area adjacent to the UK Parliament, accompanied by damage and assaults against security staff, could easily result in the English courts imposing prison terms upon the perpetrators. If the accused somehow escaped with non-custodial sentences, and the UK attorney general appealed on the grounds of undue leniency, it is perfectly possible that the English Court of Appeal would revoke the original sentences and send the defendants to prison.

Hong Kong faces many challenges, including challenges of democratic process and human rights, as this unpredictable century unfolds. So to traduce that institution most attached to the rule of law in Hong Kong, its senior judiciary, is a tragic error. To suggest, as some have done, including international NGOs who should know better, that the recent ruling of the Hong Kong Court of Appeal is an attack upon democracy, is no more than self-professed supporters of the rule of law trimming their attachment to legality simply because, in the political exigencies of a particular case, it suits them to do so.

But those who believe that support for the rule of law can be contingent may find out that others feel the same way. It is a slippery path best avoided.

[Ken Macdonald, QC, is a former director of public prosecutions for England and Wales]

- Here is someone from the Religious sector: Retired cardinal Joseph Zen.


"Rule of law is being destroyed in Hong Kong!"

The cruelest totalitarian regimes in history all began this way to succeed.

The term "unjust judges" is frequently touted by Jesus Christ (Luke 18:1-8)

They beat the human rights warriors with their left hand, but the candy given out by the right hand is poisoned. Do not be tricked by them, because using so-called livelihoods to oppress civil rights is the "pig breeding policy."

- Luke 18:1-8 The Parable of the Persistent Widow

1. Then Jesus told his disciples a parable to show them that they should always pray and not give up.

2. He said: “In a certain town there was a judge who neither feared God nor cared what people thought.

3. And there was a widow in that town who kept coming to him with the plea, ‘Grant me justice against my adversary.’

4. “For some time he refused. But finally he said to himself, ‘Even though I don’t fear God or care what people think, 

5. yet because this widow keeps bothering me, I will see that she gets justice, so that she won’t eventually come and attack me!’”

6. And the Lord said, “Listen to what the unjust judge says. 

7. And will not God bring about justice for his chosen ones, who cry out to him day and night? Will he keep putting them off? 

8. I tell you, he will see that they get justice, and quickly. However, when the Son of Man comes, will he find faith on the earth?”

What is the moral of this parable? It says that if you want the judge to rule your way, you should make him fear that you will attack him otherwise. He will rule your way just to get you out of his way.

This is called Rule by Force. It is not Rule of Law, because we have no idea what the legal issues are in the widow's case.

If Jesus says that this works, we should give it a try. Let us begin by sending razorblades to Chief Justice Geoffrey Ma and all the other judges.

As to why God has not brought about justice for his chosen ones, that's because everybody knows that they have no means to attacking Him. In like manner, we have to find a way of directly hurting Xi Jinping.

More at Occupy Central Part 8


More at:

Occupy Central Part 1 (001-100)
Occupy Central Part 2 (101-200)
Occupy Central Part 3 (201-300)
Occupy Central Part 4 (301-400)
Occupy Central Part 5 (401-500)
Occupy Central Part 6 (501-600)
Occupy Central Part 7 (601-700)

Occupy Central Part 8 (701-)

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