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September 22, 2005
Would You Mind Protesting Over There Please?
Today's Standard carries an article that demonstrates the unpreparedness of the Hong Kong government for the vicious, idiotic thugs (who come up with the money to protest all over the world) that are the anti-globalization WTO protesters.
The government has chosen the Southorn playground, an open concrete area (in Wanchai proper) over half a kilometer away from the Convention Centre (Wanchai North) and importantly, on the other side of Gloucester Road, as the 'official protesting area'. They expect the know-nothing demonstrators to be happy to stay and protest there even though they are not anywhere near the site of the WTO meeting and will never be seen by the WTO delegates except on TV. Fat chance. They'll find a way to get a lot closer to the action. If you're going to place them that far away, why don't you bus them all up to the Big Buddha on Lantau? Then they can tell the Enlightened One all their problems.
The Wan Chai district councillors are protesting this decision, not because the protesters will likely make trouble closer to the scene anyway, but because they think the protesters that are actually willing to follow directions and chant slogans at Southorn, a place totally cut off from the WTO meeting, will trash and disrupt the business of nearby shops (like the girlie bars a block away).
I guess giving them the big space by the waterfront would not do though, given that the Convention Centre is made of glass, and would ruin the visit made by zillions of Mainlanders daily to the Golden Bauhinia (that sterile hybrid flower that is the symbol of Hong Kong - how fitting) who are told that the flower is ever-so-meaningful to people here.
I think what they ought to do is to give them some random area in Wanchai North. How about Tamar, next to the former Prince of Wales building, now the PLA Army HQ in Hong Kong? Have the molotov-throwing protesters demonstrate right next to the People's Liberation Army. That'll give them something to think about. Or maybe the Wanchai sports ground. It's also not too far from the Convention Centre, and you can lock them up and shoot all the tear gas you want at them in an enclosed space if necessary.posted by HK Dave on 09.22.05 at 09:19 AM in the
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Maybe you should spread a rumour that the Falung Gong (misspelled I know) are behind the protest. that should get the PLA pretty fired up to deal with them. Maybe it would be better if they just refused them visas on arrival.As a lot of other governments should have done.posted by: javaricho on 09.22.05 at 10:05 AM [permalink]
Or the Government could begin its new Legco building just at the protesters gather.posted by: Simon on 09.22.05 at 10:15 AM [permalink]
Yes, both excellent proposals. We should put the protesters at the Tamar site right next to the PLA headquarters so that if there is bad trouble we can find out what new crowd control techniques China has developed since 1989.
Donald Tsang will then be able to say that if the Tamar site is used for a government office that has Hong Kong's best view of the harbour, then it will prevent WTO protesters from gathering there in future. Also, we'll stop having any huge rock concerts that lose us hundreds of millions of dollars.posted by: HK Dave on 09.22.05 at 01:56 PM [permalink]