Today, legislators in Hong Kong rejected the a Beijing-crafted election proposal. The proposal essentially constructed how Hong Kong would pick it’s top official in the 2017 election.
The plan followed guideline set forth by China’s Communist Party-controlled National People’s Congress (NPC). It ensures that a committee of about 1,200 people (mostly dominated by Beijing loyalists) could screen out anyone they deemed unacceptable. The three candidates chosen would be the only three allowed to run in the election.
A little background info: Hong Kong is former British colony, but it returned to Chinese rule in 1997, the territory was promised 50 years of autonomy from Beijing, under the principle “one country, two systems.”
Essentially, Hong Kong is used to being a part of the country, but they don’t like being pushed around. Last year, when Beijing announced its plan, Hong Kong protestors took to the streets...and created a lot of pro-democracy talk.
But the protests continue. Hong Kong pro-democracy marches still continue. This topic has been swirling around my dinner-table conversation with my family for months. My brother’s finance is originally from Hong Kong and has a lot of opinions on the issue. When I asked her how’s she's doing in Hong Kong she told me, "It's a bit chaotic around downtown Hong Kong... I understood augments from both sides, but I if they can treat each other with respect and love, that'll be wonderful...”
"But can their voice be heard just by handling it with love and respect? It seems like protests would help with the countries progress." I asked her.
The protests that took place almost a year ago seemed to spark a new wave of democracy and really opened the discussion. And it seems Hong Kong’s lawmakers noticed. So why stop civil protest?
“Let us show the world that we are not fools,” Claudia Mo, a Hong Kong lawmaker told in a televised speech, “If you want to be true to the words democracy and universal suffrage, ladies and gentlemen, all Hong Kongers, we have no option but to vote against it.”