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A fight for liberal democracy 

What impact do you want to have on the world and why? Please limit your statement to 500 words maximum and provide your submission with a link.

103 million people protested on the street. 9 people committed suicide. More than 240 tear gas bombs and 30 react rounds bullets were utilized to suppress protesters. This is a place where political justice no longer existed. This is a fight which people have longed for freedom of speech. This is a place where police’s brutality become the norm of standardized practice. This is a place where I “once” proudly call home- Hong Kong. 


Speaking what you think is right might seem like a common thing in US. But not the case for China, and HK in the near future. To provide you some context about HK, HK is a former British colony returned to China in 1997 under the policy of “one country, two system”. The policy has ensured a high degree of autonomy by preserving HK’s independent courts and open internet like accessing Facebook. Yet, this autonomy is only guaranteed until 2047 when Hong Kong officially became part of China. 


However, the fight for democracy outburst when HK’s Chief Executive, Carrie Lam, tried to implement a new law called Extradition Plan, which was originally used to prosecute a HK man who murdered his girlfriend in Taiwan. But this bill has greater significance, meaning that anyone living in HK can be transferred back to China without any formal agreement. This is essentially an endgame to any political activist who are anti-Chinese. 


Even though the bill has been demolished as a result of millions of protests in the HK’s central area, this controversial has expanded much bigger into a major political crisis. Over the past few months, there were various kinds of protests where people are demanding for full democracy and police accountability for brutal treatment of protesters. 


As a local who was born in HK and lived for more than 18 years, having freedom of speech and an independent press have always been something I truly value as a HK person. Making a world’s impact may seem like an overstatement, but bringing political justice back to HK and the greater part of China has always been my dream. I always envision a time for HK people where conformity to China’s communist system is not definite and Chinese identity is not singular, but rather comprised of diverse cultural backgrounds. This not only means citizens have the right to participate in political elections regardless of their statuses, but also indicates the urge to preserve unique cultures like Tibet, where Chinese authorities detained a million minorities to adopt secular Chinese customs. While saddened to see a rich Buddhist culture is being erased, I do not want HK’s unique Cantonese culture vanished in 2047. 


Spreading political awareness by constructing Lennon Walls across UCLA and holding assembly by uniting different UC campuses about the issue is only the first step to truly safeguard HK from deprived democracy. In the future, I persistently aspire to fight for HK’s democracy and universal suffrage, hoping that one day it will not fall into China’s reign of authoritarianism. 

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