The Hong Kong government is thinking of making it illegal to ‘insult public officials’. This prompts three questions. 1) What will we do all day? 2) If they are this angry at being called stupid, doesn’t it suggest they really are? And 3) Why is such a draconian law necessary?
I’m stumped by the first question, and I’ll leave the second for others to consider. But the third is easy. Read on…
The government is relaxing pandemic regulations to allow people to go to Disneyland, gyms, etc or be seated four to a table in restaurants in the evenings – but public gatherings are still limited to two, and beaches and kids’ playgrounds remain closed.
Legal assistant Chan Tsz-wah, age 29, is charged with ‘conspiracy to collude with a foreign country or with external elements to endanger national security’ (it seems he urged US sanctions) and ‘conspiracy to assist an offender’. Jimmy Lai, already in jail, has also been arrested. (Some discussion here.) Hong Kong Watch comments:
It is a damning testament to the deteriorating human rights situation in Hong Kong, that in 2021 Chan Tsz-wah faces ten years to life in prison under the National Security Law…
The trial begins of nine pan-democrats, including inoffensive aging campaigners like Martin Lee (age 82), Margaret Ng, Albert Ho and Cyd Ho, as well as Jimmy Lai (have they got him for jaywalking yet?). They are accused of unauthorized assembly – namely, the August 18, 2019 mega-demonstration that nearly everyone went to.
Meanwhile, back at the pandemic: the government seems to have lumbered us with a sub-par vaccine. For lack of better explanations, people are wondering whether officials chose Chinese-made Sinovac as a show of patriotism, and even delayed vaccination roll-outs to ensure the Glorious Motherland’s product gets the glory of being first. (They’re also talking of compensation for anyone killed by the stuff. Routine diligence, I guess – but it doesn’t exactly strengthen my laid-back it’s-just-a-drop-of-inert-liquid attitude.)
Let’s face it – if you were responsible for the above (or similar) idiocies, wouldn’t you want a law banning people from pointing out how incompetent you are?
(But hey – isn’t calling Carrie Lam a dumbass already illegal under the law against revealing state secrets?)