The Speech Carrie Lam Should Have Made

Last Saturday I stood before you and announced that the government would be suspending its efforts to pass the controversial extradition bill. I had hoped that this decision would temper the anger harbored by many Hong Kongers over the way the government had mishandled and in some cases ignored the objections raised by many interested parties against passage of the extradition law. I said then that rather than continue with our efforts to pass the bill, it was time to take a breather and step back to assess the situation.

On Sunday the public responded to my decision to suspend passage of the bill with still more protests. We saw Hong Kongers of all ages and from all walks of life exercise their freedoms, taking peacefully to the streets in record numbers to tell the government, and myself in particular, that they were still dissatisfied with the status quo.

I understand now that more needs to be done. Because the problem lies not simply in the extradition bill but in the differing visions of what Hong Kong will become ten, twenty years from now. For many Hong Kongers, especially among our youth, there exists a fear that the freedoms and rights they have enjoyed or have become accustomed to will be taken away from them as Hong Kong inches closer to the year when the guarantee of ‘one country, two systems’ will expire. That is a concern that this government, as the sole representative of the Hong Kong people, needs to address.

The government is not infallible. It is fundamentally a creation of human thought and human ideas. Laws that have, at one time, won the approval of the government and the public are sometimes revised or rescinded in their entirety because they lose their relevance or because they no longer reflect the values of contemporary society. So too people who were once elected or appointed to public office leave their posts because their policies and stances no longer reflect prevailing public norms. And that is as it should be in a democratic, transparent, and compassionate society like ours.

So today I announce that I will be resigning as Chief Executive. My vision of what Hong Kong should be or will be is not in line with that shared by many of my fellow Hong Kongers. And to try and push through the measures that I think are necessary to achieve this vision will only create more conflict, more bloodshed, and more hurt.

At this point in time it is appropriate and necessary for the people of Hong Kong, including our youth, to come together and to engage in a dialogue about what kind of Hong Kong they want to see in the future. It is a dialogue that will no doubt be fraught, contentious and painful. But it is one that needs to be had. Because only when we have a clear idea of the kind of Hong Kong we want will we be able to make the kinds of decisions and form the kinds of plans that we will need to realize that vision.

The spirit of Hong Kong is strong and it is just. I know that. You know that. And the world now knows that. Let us harness that spirit in unity and with mutual respect for one another as we work toward building a better, more hopeful future for Hong Kong.

Terms and Conditions for Bleak House Books’ Charity Auction of Anthony Bourdain’s Hungry Ghosts (Special Autographed Edition)

WHEN: Friday, February 15, 2019 from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. (Hong Kong Time)

WHERE: The Facebook page for Bleak House Books (www.facebook.com/bleakhousebooks)

WHAT: SPECIAL AUTOGRAPHED EDITION OF ANTHONY BOURDAIN’S HUNGRY GHOSTS

Pre-registration

  1. The auction is open to the general public and those who wish to participate in the auction must pre-register with us
  2. We will not recognize or entertain bids from anyone who has not pre-registered with us, this includes bidders who wish to remain anonymous
  3. The pre-registration deadline is 9:00 p.m. (Hong Kong time), Thursday, February 14, 2019
  4. To pre-register, please 1) click ‘Going’ on the auction’s Facebook event post and 2) send us an email (info@bleakhousebooks.com.hk) with the full name, address, and phone number of the bidder
  5. Bidders who wish to remain anonymous must still pre-register with us by sending us an email with the full name, address, and phone number of the bidder before the above deadline
  6. If you miss the pre-registration deadline you may still register with us while the auction is taking place by sending us an email; however, under no circumstances will we accept or entertain bids from anyone who has not registered with us and provided us with the requisite registration information as per the above

The Auction

  1. The auction will be conducted on Bleak House Books’ Facebook page from 9:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m. (Hong Kong time) on Friday, February 15, 2019
  2. We will put up a standalone post on the Bleak House Books Facebook page the morning of the auction to serve as the ‘platform’ for the auction
  3. We will announce the start of the auction in the comments section of the post; under no circumstances will bids be accepted or entertained before we announce the start of the auction
  4. The starting bid is HKD $800.00
  5. Bidders place their bids by entering a dollar amount in the comments section
  6. The staff at Bleak House Books will be monitoring and moderating the auction throughout the day
  7. In order to view the latest/highest bid, bidders should REFRESH the page during the course of the auction
  8. Anonymous bidders who have pre-registered with us can place bids by:
    • sending an email to info@bleakhousebooks.com.hk with your name and your bid, OR
    • sending us a direct message via our Facebook page with the same information.
    • Once we receive the bid we will post it on behalf of the respective anonymous bidder in the comments section of the auction post
  9. Should we receive two or more anonymous bids of the same amount we will accept the one with the earliest time of receipt; those that arrive later will be rejected and their bidders so informed
  10. Anonymous bidders assume the risk that there will be a slight time delay between the time they send us their bids and the time it takes us to process and post them to the Facebook page
  11. We will announce the END of the auction in the comments section. Under no circumstances will we accept or entertain bids that are entered after the end of the auction
  12. The bidder with the highest bid at the close of the auction has purchased the item and is legally obligated to pay for it
  13. Bleak House Books will donate 100% of the proceeds received from the sale of the auction item to PEI HO (MING GOR) CHARITY FOUNDATION LIMITED ( 北河(明哥)慈善基金有限公司)
  14. Once we receive confirmation of payment, the winning bidder can elect to have the book shipped to an address of their choosing or pick up the book in person at our bookshop in San Po Kong
  15. In the event the winning bidder wishes to have the book shipped he or she is responsible for the full cost of the shipment, which we will calculate and then bill to the winning bidder separately
  16. We will not entertain or accept any requests for a retraction of a bid except in the situation that the bid is entered in error
  17. We will not entertain or accept any requests for a refund except in extraordinary situations; an ‘extraordinary situation’ is one that is by its nature very, very unlikely to occur

Payment:

  1. Payment must be made within 2 days of the close of the auction
  2. If we do not receive payment within that time frame the item goes to the bidder who has the second-highest bid prior to the close of the auction
  3. In a situation where we receive two or more winning bids of the same amount we will accept the one with the earliest time of receipt
  4. There are 2 ways for the winner bidder to pay for the item:
    • Cheque (drawn on a Hong Kong bank in Hong Kong dollars and made payable to ‘Bleak House Limited’)
    • Bank transfer (we will supply bank details to the winning bidder upon the end of the auction; please note that any and all bank fees that are incurred as a result of the bank transfer will be the responsibility of the winning bidder )