Have you ever seen people line up outside a pharmaceutical store just for one single box of surgical masks? Have you ever even seen some elderly in wheelchairs have to queue on a street under 10°C at midnight begging for,again, a single box of masks? Have you ever seen most of the racks in supermarkets were all cleared empty without any replenishment of stock? You may be guessing I am describing a situation in a developing regions…NO! You are guessing wrong! All these are what are happening in HK right now! Yes! I am going to tell you what is happening in a well-known international city—Hong Kong! Due to the outbreak of the novel coronavirus in mainland China, it has just been confirmed that ALL Chinese regions have at least one confirmed case(s).
Furthermore, the World Health Organization (WHO) has declared this new virus as a global emergency. Unfortunately, the number of confirmed cases in HKSAR is still increasing thanks to the fame of being the international entrepot. Without any assistance from the local government, the citizens have to bear a risk of being contracted by the virus running around to buy one box of surgical masks.All of us just wish to protect ourselves by enhancing the hygiene when the government is doing nothing. Instead, the officials are not keen to offer any hygienic kits to the residents or temporarily close the border. Contrarily, they are just blaming Health Care Practitioners (HCPs) including front-line doctors and nurses, who are fighting for us against the virus face-to-face, for initiating a strike, in which has been cultivating for ages. Being indifferent to their voices and concerns, what the government has decided to do is to bury its head to the sand. Most of the front-line HCPS have to work around the clock and at this critical stage of the “war”, they dare not sip a bit of water because they wish to save their protective gear by not going to the toilet.
Obviously, the reason why they would like to go on a strike is not solely because of their slothfulness. On the contrary, they only wish to express their concern that closing the border is the crucial key to limit the number of confirmed cases locally and minimize the demand for protective gears (e.g. hygienic kits, surgical masks, safety goggles) which are in a blink shortage. What could you ignore the voice from the true hongkongers if you were born in Hong Kong? Do you think the poeple who have grown up in Hong Kong would give you deadly suggestions? Do you think the lives of every single hongkonger is not as valuable as the revenue brought by the Chinese mainlanders? Do you really think the revenue loss due to the border closure is greater than the lives of Hong Kong people? I guess what Hongkongers are asking the government to do is to close the border temporarily, not permanently. It is totally impervious to reason why the border is still open to the potentially contagious people who are rushing here with hiding the truth that they are in fact from the mainland China. I have been living in Hong Kong for a few decades. I have been feeling so safe and blessed that I could reside in Hong Kong. Nevertheless, I feel abruptly anxious even when I’m sitting at home. I am worried to go to malls or public transportation since I am feeling that the government is pushing us to die by freeing potential contagions onto the streets. How could I dare bringing my family including my 5-year-old boy to any risks of being contracted? Could I be still unruffled if most of the HCPs serving us are getting sick one by one or if more and more people are striving for a little paper mask or a bottle of ethanol? To establish and buttress a society, wealth is not a must. Fulfilling the basic needs of the society members is rather paramount, such as supplying food and necessity, providing affordable homes, ensure their safety should be put in the first place. Without these, how would the society member be willing to listen to the leader of the society? How could the people still cling on you or follow you leads if you are slaving them? Of course, I am not an expert in controlling a pandemic and I am not going to write on the behalf of any HCPs.
However, I, as a true Hongkonger, only wish to keep all the Hong Kong people safe and healthy. How could it be done? Personally, breaking down silos among various government divisions and trying to put yourself in the Hong Kong people’s shoes. No matter how peaceful and united most Hongkongers went out to voice out their concerns and disappointment; no matter what violence a few Hong Kong people did to express how they were furious with the government, the authoritative remains all the same—ignoring the basic demands from the citizens. Let’s talk in a simpler way, listening to what your son or daughter say or what they want are also important in building a parental relationship. How would this society move forward if the relationship between the government and the citizens has been collapsed?