A quiet corner of the Chinese University of Hong Kong
on a day that feels like an eternity ago
A sight I loathe and never want to get used to seeing
A week or so ago, I was talking with a friend about the sad situation that Hong Kong currently is in. At one point, she said: "We must never get used to this." These words resonated with me and I found myself quoting them to a couple visiting from England earlier today when discussing the turmoil and unrest that has beset this part of the world that I still very much love.
More than incidentally, on my way to meet that couple in Central this morning, I found myself in an MTR station crawling with riot police (the sight of whom I'm honestly getting pretty sick and tired of, and tends to fill me with foreboding -- I think with good reason). And while I thankfully managed to escape inhaling more tear gas today, that by no means is because the local constabulary have reined in their use of it in recent days in Central and elsewhere.
The main battleground today has been the campus of the Chinese University of Hong Kong, with the police having attempted to storm it since this afternoon and the battle still ongoing as I write this blog post. After raining tear gas and rubber bullets on students for hours, the police have now also deployed one of their water cannons.
I know of at least two friends have headed over to try to help the students there. My unfamiliarity with the campus, among other things, have made me not join them. Following what has been happening online, I feel so helpless as well as so very upset. At one point this evening, I found myself shedding tears: probably the first time this has happened not as a result of tear gas since June 12th, the first time -- but sadly by no means the last time -- this year that the actions of the Hong Kong police got me shocked and filled with horror.
When will it end? How will it end? This I know: the more the police fire tear gas at students, business executives and other office workers, area residents of various neighbourhoods, passersby (including children), etc., the more people they get angry at them. And these include short term visitors to this fair city like the English couple I was with earlier today -- who arrived into town on Sunday, got tear gassed yesterday while strolling around near their hotel in Central but, hopefully, did not inhale more tear gas again today (what with the police having fired more of this chemical weapon in Central another two times over the past 12 hours)!