Protests against Hong Kong’s extradition bill have escalated over the past few weeks and have now come to a tipping point. The protests began as a public appeal from Hong Kong residents for Chief Executive Carrie Lam to revoke the extradition bill, which would allow the extradition of Hong Kong residents and foreigners residing in Hong Kong to China to be tried under Chinese law.
On August 1, 2019, thousands of HK residents gathered at Chater Garden to protest against the growing suppressive influence of the Chinese communist regime in Hong Kong.
A growing number of Hong Kong residents and supporters around the world have expressed their concerns over China’s human-rights abuses and anti-democratic approach to ruling Hong Kong, which it is trying to force upon Hong Kong’s otherwise autonomous government and legal system.
A growing number of protesters in Hong Kong are calling for appealing to government officials to remain autonomous in their handling of state affairs. In response, the Chinese army has released a promotional video for its Hong Kong-based troops, seemingly preparing them for a planned intervention in the city’s escalating protests.
Civil servants stand up
The protests started as pockets of silent marches that mostly consisted youth taking a stance against the decaying democratic values that have made Hong Kong so special to its residents and to other democratic countries that have valued HK’s atmosphere because it has been so different to the neighboring mainland.
A few weeks ago, senior members of society joined in to support the younger protesters, explaining that the protests were not just a fad brought about by young rebellious members of society, but that their cause really reflected the concerns of levels of society that cherish the democratic values Hong Kong has been based on.
Now, as the protests escalate and more people come to the streets to show their solidarity for upholding democracy and freedom of speech, even Hong Kong’s civil servants have joined in support of the crowds who jammed into Hong Kong’s public park on Friday.
“As civil servants, if we don’t stand up, that means we are disloyal,” said K. H. Wu, a retiree who worked for the government’s census department for 40 years. “Our loyalties are not to a particular government, but to the people.”
According to media, Hong Kong civil servants and their supporters defied warnings from their superiors to rally.
Unfortunately, China’s response has been far removed from trying to find a diplomatic solution, as its top diplomat recently accused Western nations of “provoking” and being responsible for the pro-democracy movement’s opposition to China’s growing grip over HK.
According to a recent Xinhua News Agency report, China’s top diplomat was quoted saying that the U.S. and other Western nations supposedly arranged meetings between high-level officials and protest leaders to encourage their actions.
But this is nothing new to experts, as Beijing has quite a track record of blaming any unrest on shadowy foreign anti-China forces that want to suppress China’s rise to economic and diplomatic prominence.
The call for more democratic rights
For those who are confused concerning what all the commotion in Hong Kong these past few weeks has been about, it all boils down to two main issues — a call for greater democratic rights and government accountability.
This is why thousands of protesters, including hundreds of government workers, stood in solidarity even as it rained on the crowds. As the crowds flooded the streets, many held up signs reading: “We are civil servants and willing to step up!” and “Political neutrality does not equal conscienceless.”
While Chinese state media push the narrative that the protests are the result of outer manipulation and not based on the will and wishes of Hong Kong’s residents, violent actions between the pro-CCP triad members and Hong Kong’s pro-democracy protestors tell a different story.
The black belt who took a fist to prove his values
The tunnel below the bridge at Kwun Tong Road in Kowloon Bay is open to the public. Hong Kong residents who support the pro-democratic efforts of the protesters come here frequently to post their comments, views, opinions, and hopes on the wall.
Recently, while several Hong Kong residents were congregating under the bridge, a man approached the group and started a heated discussion. Judging from the man’s comments, he was against everything the pro-democratic movement in Hong Kong stands for.
In a heated moment, the angry man, who seemed very much in favor of the CCP agenda, beat one of the bystanders. The bystander got up after falling to the ground, but remained calm and self-controlled.
While yelling at the group, the man also said: “You engage in revolution, and ruin the revolution.” He also pointed to the stickers and later began to tear them down.
Many believe the aggressive man was implying that the pro-democratic movement is ruining all the efforts by China to enforce its so-called “one China policy” using measures like the extradition bill to enforce its policies over Hong Kong residents to a greater extent.
What many commenters find remarkable is that the pro-democracy man, who has a black belt in martial arts, did not hit back and remained calm.