Most Perverse Press Conference of the Week Award goes to the Hong Kong Federation of Youth Groups for displaying before the media what appeared to be an inadequate and awkward young man willing to be quoted in the Standard as saying: “If I can’t get a girlfriend soon, I’ll see myself as a failure” (thus bringing himself into line with everyone else who has ever had the slightest glimpse of him).
We all know, of course, that the days of freak shows and visits to insane asylums to mock the afflicted are mercifully over. Therefore – obviously, it goes without saying – the HKFYG did not produce a real, live teenage loser for public consumption, but instead obtained ‘Ah-Leung’ via a talent casting agency specializing in dorky-looking actors with weird hair and spectacles. But, even so, it is shocking that they expect the press and people to be taken in and participate in this (albeit apparent and staged, mock) bear-baiting of an innocent schmuck high-school student.
The Federation is run by Rosanna Wong, former senior civil servant who resigned after a construction corruption scandal back in the days when top bureaucrats took responsibility for their departments’ mistakes. Like hundreds of former government people, she cannot stop herself from continuing to Serve The Community, to death if necessary, whether it wants it or not. She is probably in her element. The HKFYG is an umbrella group that is never happier than when it is uncovering millions of needy, vulnerable, acne-ridden, depressed, suicidal young people who smoke, gamble, do drugs, use the Internet too much or – and I shudder in horror at the thought of it – fornicate.
In my day, young Hong Kong women (at least) didn’t. However badly they wanted a passport, they just didn’t. The word was that a week or two before the wedding, a happy couple would take a discreet vacation for a few days to get it over with. The pickier girls grew into today’s legions of 40-something virgins who put ads in the personal columns seeking a man with a PhD. Nowadays, however, the kids are rutting like crazy everywhere you look, and this is the season when we will soon be stepping over piles of humping couples in every street, park and 7-Eleven. Christmas is the festival where you don’t have to visit boring old grandparents; you can go out and do anything you want, and the middle-aged do-gooders of the Anti-Sex League (motto: “We’re not jealous or anything”) don’t like it.
They want the youngsters to take a cold shower, browse a meritorious website, lead a healthy happy life and say no to lifelong post-abortion trauma. And if one glance at Ah-Leung doesn’t do that, nothing will.