Jan 12, 2010

The Post-80s Are Our Leaders of Tomorrow

The Post-80s are our leaders of tomorrow

By Dr. Anthony S.M. Ng, M.D.

A Post-50s Professional in Support of Today's Post-80s

In the early 1980’s, there was a group of us, about the same age as these young people now, who got together and did what was considered radical at the time. We dared to question government policies and wrote about what we considered unjust. Our activities were branded as being naïve, un-constructive and even subversive. Members were harassed. Files were kept on us by a special secret government unit called SCOPG (Standing Committee on Pressure Groups). One of us was supposedly a KGB ‘spy’.

Today, there is an Executive Councilor among that group, and a young surveyor who attended meetings and contributed his ideas then may be running in the next Chief Executive selection. Former members are now university professors, distinguished authors, successful professionals and the head of a well-known think tank. By any standards, they have been responsible and contributing members of this community.

Instead of asking what is wrong with today’s young people, the government should examine what it has done wrong. Spending HK$69 billion on a new rail line is a big deal for the community and there is nothing wrong with raising questions. If the project is solid, the government has nothing to fear and should provide more information to the public. Now that we are alerted to this project, the community is all ears. Further discussion can only make it a better project.

If the process to decide how to spend our money is not seen as fair, due to some of us having more voting rights than others, can we blame people for using every means to speak out? Instead of questioning their values, the government should question whether the root cause of discontent has much to do with its own behavior.

In twenty years’ time, our generation will be gone. The future belongs to these young people. And who knows, one of them may even be the future Chief Executive of Hong Kong.

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