Cartoonist Ah To tries to teach Carrie Lam to say
the Cantonese word she seems unable to bring herself to say
Beleaguered Hong Kong Chief Executive Carrie Lam appeared in public for the first time since her 4am press conference on July 2nd earlier today, and proceeded to declare her hated extradition bill "dead" in English and supposedly also in Cantonese. Within minutes of her speech though, large numbers of people were puzzling over the exact meaning of the Cantonese phrase she had used; with a number coming to the conclusion that the words she had uttered weren't quite synonymous with the English word "dead".
In the wake of her announcement, even more people were moved to wonder why she hadn't just used the word "withdraw" (in both English and Cantonese) since the withdrawal of the anti-extradition bill is what millions of protesters have clearly been calling for some months now. So ludicrous indeed is her reluctance to utter that word that a Hong Kong-based German TV reporter ended up laughing when asked point blank by his network's English language news show anchor why Carrie Lam just didn't resolve things by saying that one word!
There has been laughing speculation that, since Carrie Lam is a Catholic, her saying that the extradition bill is "dead" doesn't preclude it getting resurrected at a later date. More seriously though, the key problem that people have with the term she now is using for it is that it doesn't qualify as legislative language the way that "postpone" (which she had previously used with regards to the extradation bill's progress -- or not as the case may be) and "withdraw" are.
Because this hated bill still hasn't been (officially said to be) withdrawn, the protests will surely go on. And for those who say that protests cannot work: Well, one month ago, Carrie Lam was adamant that she was going to press on with her efforts to see the extradition bill passed. And while opponents of the bill have not entirely achieved what we wanted, we do seem to be getting closer to our goal now than just a few weeks ago.
Also, it's worth noting that three days after thousands of people rallied against the "dancing aunties" in Tuen Mun on Saturday, the "self-entertainment zones" in which those women had performed sexy dances (often for money) have now been cancelled. So, yes, people power can bear fruit -- even in only partially democratic Hong Kong!