Students’ humiliation of Hong Kong’s chief sparks debate about free speech
Hong Kong Chief Executive CY Leung was given thumbs-down, the middle finger, ‘No’ signs and was even mooned at the commencement by students at the Hong Kong Academy for Performing Arts last week. In return, Leung greeted each of his protesters nothing but an awkward smile.
Long seen as a puppet leader installed by Beijing, CY Leung is a persona non grata in the semi-autonomous region, but whereas many embraced the students’ bold gestures as a sign of free speech, others roasted them for their total lack of courtesy. What do you think?
Those who support the students’ bold acts.
风行创世纪：You have the right to promote your faith and administer, but you cannot deprive me of the right to question.
猴子Ge哥：If he is an individual, he truly deserves respect. The question is, most Hong Kong people see their chief executive as a dog at best.
UICer陳Handog: If he walks on the street, his role will be a natural person, a senior citizen, and then that is disrespect to a senior. But at the commencement, his role is the chief executive; he represents the regime. Then that is the spirit of independence and freedom.
可乐飞饼：This is not about right or wrong. This represents an attitude. That’s it.
温柔的纹身猎人：Truly envy Hong Kong. At least there you can treat yourself as a real human being.
西西弗之黄昏：At least they can follow their hearts and do anything… although it is a little bit disrespectful… Mainland students can seldom do that. But the most praiseworthy thing is the top leader in Hong Kong actually tolerates such behavior of students rather than vent his anger onto them. This is a great manifestation of free speech in a society ruled by law!! I remember Charles K. Kao was also despised like this by students back then?
Holdinicetea：CY Leung deserves no respect from students given his disregard for the public opinion.
假装在纽约：Any hatred must have its cause. If you know what Leung did, you won’t blame students for being impolite.
Those who are against them:
方炳焯：In order to tolerate disrespect, discontent, prejudice and opposition, any government or politician needs to have enough confidence, generosity and good manner. And in terms of the so-called ‘impolite’ expression of opinion, what those students did was simply child’s play. In a society where one can freely express oneself, commencement shouldn’t be clowns’ stage. This only shows they are immature.
张其函律师：Are these Red Guards of Hong Kong? What will be their next step, shaving his head, branding his face, and parading him through the streets? Will the girl who gave the middle finger apologize on Yanhuang Chunqiu two or three decades later?
大额外45：Democracy isn’t built through such a manner of expression. What this expresses is naivety and ignorance.
文SHA-JI：However terrible CY Leung’s administration is, pelting him and seeking after facebook likes for these photos is a real lack of manner. You can hate him as you want. But you shouldn’t express it in this fashion.
小叮当的大熊：Democracy does mean free speech. But respect for teachers and seniors is a tradition we Chinese pride ourselves on. Now you can tell in Hong Kong, this Chinese tradition is lost. We don’t oppose democracy in Hong Kong, but democracy doesn’t mean students can do these to their teachers.
李冰朗：This is way out of line. They didn’t behave according to the occasion. They didn’t even know the basic courtesy and respect.
安安这里还有河马：Free speech is not equal to public humiliation.
@DoctorEve: I truly cannot agree with such behavior. Quite affected and disrespectful.
Wayne-OY：At the end of the day, he is a senior. If you are so impolite to the senior, how can you call yourself an educated person? And they have graduated? A bunch of dogs.