The regime announced a bill to “improve” the electoral system, which reduces the directly elected seats of the Legislative Council to 20, introduces nominations from the Election Committee to participate in the election, screening by the Qualification Review Committee, a national security stamp in order to enter the race, the Election Committee is going to be where power lies in Hong Kong, and not to mention the scrapping of the five super District Council seats. Perhaps many people cannot bother themselves with the details of the reform, for in reality, when the 2000-something “loyal garbage” pressed that button to pass the reform, Hong Kong’s real election was already certified to be dead. The Hong Kong government is now only following the instructions to complete the remaining ceremonies of the “funeral”, be it reciting the scriptures or mass services, it is just a quick finish to the end of the road of a democratic parliament. The next step is for the Legislative Council to pass the bill in accordance with the wishes of the motherland after three readings, to put the last nail on the coffin, and then carve on the epitaph of Hong Kong’s election: “Born in the colonial era, and died in 2021 (after the promulgation of the National Security Law); hanged, drawn, and quartered, the death was horrible and absurd.” Along with it is a plethora of burial articles: diverse voice, freedom to say no, etc., and before the burial, place a copy of the Basic Law on top, end of the ceremony.
Bei Dao, who was nominated for the Nobel Prize in Literature, wrote the poem “Answer”. The first two lines are: “Vileness is the pass of the vile, nobility is the epitaph of the noble.” I remember that about 10 years ago, Mr. Lee Yee wrote in his column with this interpretation, “I originally considered Hong Kong to be a relatively fair society, the vile don’t necessary have its way, and nobility should be encouraged, at least such that they don’t always run into obstacles, at least there should always be a way out. Yet seeing how openly vile the SAR government and the pro-establishment are, blatantly undisguised, it made me think of these two lines of the poem. Those who love Hong Kong would never want to see Hong Kong become this way.” Unfortunately, under the ravages of the patriots today in Hong Kong, nobility has been twisted into the “sentiment” of a knife-wielding murderer. That article was published around the time of the by-election that followed the Five Constituencies Resignation. Then Chief Executive Donald Tsang had publicly stated that he and his political team would not vote. That, in today’s world, would constitute a three-year sentence.
On top of the basic information such as the time of birth and death, the epitaph of the Hong Kong election should also offer the following explanations for some of the causes of death regarding the “quartering” of the body:
1) The bones were dismantled. The most representative of the Election Committee, namely the original 117 District Councillors of the fourth constituent, is suddenly totally scrapped and replaced by representatives of district crime-fighting committees and fire prevention committees.
2) Turned upside down. The Election Committee itself, originally formed by a small circle, now has an increase of 300 people. Not only does it still control the Chief Executive election, but with an additional 40 seats in the Legislative Council, it is now the largest power. Even to stand for election in the Legislative Council, one must first receive two nominations from each of the sectors in the Election Committee in order to participate. To be a lawmaker or Chief Executive, first, go beg for votes from this group of people.
3) Silenced. The Medical Association and the Bar Association are now left with one vote each, and the education sector’s Professional Teachers’ Union and the social welfare community’s General Union are even scrapped completely of their votes. The medical and health service sectors have been merged into a single medical and health sector, while the high education and education sectors have also been merged into a single sector. In the Sports, Performing Arts, Culture and Publication sectors, group votes that include eight news organizations such as the Journalists’ Association have been booted.
4) Water cured. The new fifth constituent of the Election Committee is like a central election command branch. In addition to the 190 ex-officio members of the National People’s Congress and the CPPCC, five national organizations are taking over the remaining 110 seats.
5) Threatened. The government’s absurd amendment of the law deems anyone who uses public activities to incite others not to vote, to cast a blank or an invalid vote would be considered a violation of the law. The new qualification examination committee is to conduct a “body-check” on candidates. The members of the committees are appointed by the Chief Executive, and no appeal can be filed against the decision of the committee; If Carrie Lam wants to be re-elected, the committee members that she appoints would be responsible for reviewing herself and her potential competitors in the future.
Let’s reminisce on the time prior to the Hong Kong elections’ death sentence, when the regime was already making a series of arrangements in preparation for the National People’s Congress. Last year, the disqualifications of the four Civic Party lawmakers’ eligibility to participate in the election were followed by the postponement of the Legislative Council election that was originally scheduled for September of last year. The regime then continued to smear the pro-democracy District Councillors who were elected last year for “playing politics”. That brought us to the mass arrest of those involved in the primary elections at the beginning of this year. They were jailed without being tried under the excuse that “these imprisoned people wanted to take advantage of the election to mess Hong Kong up.” Coupled with the sacred decree of “patriots ruling Hong Kong”, the National People’s Congress’s “improvement” of the electoral system has become an inevitable and necessary outcome. Don’t forget to cheer and be thankful.
In any case, the “deceased” is gone. Some are mourning, some are angry, and others are looking for the “murderers and accomplices.” The former Chairman of the Legislative Council is acting neutral and argued that “You forced him, and therefore he killed you!” This is simply arguing for the “murderer”; and of course some will say, “I told you so. Told you to accept it first, and then we would not be where we are now.” This is similar to the logic of “blame the victim”, there is no need for me to explain; many people would be with their “coulda, woulda, shoulda”, which is a normal post-mortem analysis, but as everyone knows, the world has no shoulda, woulda, coulda.
The National Security Law killed street protests, and the “improved” electoral system has totally blocked the road to parliament. The situation is terrible, but our hearts cannot die. Not the heart to run for elections, but the heart to fight for justice, for democracy, and for freedom. We must not let that die. We see that those imprisoned are staying hopeful, so those of us who are outside of the walls should never lose hope. I recall the other two lines of Bei Dao’s Answer: “I do not believe that dreams are false, I do not believe that death is without retribution.” When you are on the verge of despair, if your heart is not dead, there will be a way out.
When the world is too hopeless, we must radiate more positive energy. This “improved” system has at least brought about one “progress”, which is that the winner of the “Chief Loyal Garbage” election would definitely grab more than a thousand votes instead of 689 or 777. Hong Kong is finally seeing a Chief Executive that has more than 1000 votes. Universal suffrage is near.
(Wu-dao, freelance writer.)
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