It’s been almost four months protesters who oppose Extradition Bill have disturbed the comfort of Hong Kong citizen. The demonstrators massively tried to occupy the main streets, blocking roads, vandalizing legislative council, followed by burning and destroying the subway station and mobbing malls. Previously they occupied the Hong Kong International Airport, which left thousands of passengers stranded for hours.
Hong Kong has enjoyed freedom and economic development over 100 years, all the way through sovereignty back to China in the past 22 years. But started in June 2019, radical elements’ sustained attacks threatening Hong Kong’s well being. Causing more than seven million hard-working citizens lost their peace. Causing socioeconomic life and prosperity of Hong Kong under tension.
Beg a question
More than 180 police officers have been attacked and injured during the protest. “And their families are also subjected to intimidation,” quoted from a Hong Kong government in August. “The police family has experienced various acts of intimidation. Their homes were destroyed so the women and children who lived there felt very scared and disturbed.”
As if bullying, abusing and intimidating innocent women and children is not sadistic enough, they also turn to use brutal physical forces targeting random civilians like passerby, businessman and journalist.
CNN reporters saw a mob of masked protesters attacking a man in the Tin Hau neighborhood after a brief confrontation, leaving him dazed and bleeding on the floor. In an earlier incident, video shared widely online showed a middle-aged man wearing a blue shirt attacked and left apparently unconscious by a large group of mostly young, black-clad protesters on Gloucester Road. According to the South China Morning Post, the unidentified man had shouted pro-police slogans before the attack.
The committed violences beg a question, what is actually the protesters purpose? Fighting for democracy or solely undermine Hong Kong in chaotic situation? To answer this question, let’s see a research conducted by various Hong Kong universities from 9 June to 4 August.
The result found the extent to which protesters agreed or strongly agreed with the saying “the use of violence by protesters is understandable when the government fails to listen” increased from 69% to more than 90% over the summer. During a break-in legislative building, one of the protester even admit that the peaceful protest is useless. While other protesters justify their violence because they fight for ‘greater cause’.
Silent majority arises
No wonder then, some of the Hong Kong protesters start to have doubts whether they’ve gone too far. Hong Kong silent majority arises. “They are not making any contribution, they are destroying public utilities”, said William Cheung condemning the radical protesters.
Another Hong Kong resident share the same criticism. “We don’t speak out like they do or aggressively defend the political views because we need to focus on our jobs, make money and raise children. The way they are acting is destroying Hong Kong’s stability and putting the prospects of the city in danger,” Ho Chi-wai, a bank employee, said. With no easy options to bring the protests to an end, ‘silent majority’ like Chi-wai and Cheung appealed for “all those who care about Hong Kong’s future [to] step up firmly to stop the violence and restore order”.
These developments mark a significant turn of events to see local Hong Kong residents become angrier and more uncomfortable . Because this so-called “pro-democracy activists” tend to make the list of their violence acts even longer. This is the right moment to form ‘rational voices’. There is a principle in communications studies, that when more than 20 percent of a society fiercely oppose something, they will have a better chance of launching a powerful influence to change public opinion.
Hong Kong’s future must be based on the rule of law instead of extremists and external forces that drive the city into a vicious cycle. If Hong Kong loses its rule of law and becomes a political battleground, it will have an uncertain future. Which is against the wishes of Hong Kong residents.