Of course, I am talking about the police. This argument is brought up over and over again. Is it fear that makes us defend the police? Or arrogance to only uphold the unpopular view to create controversy? Whatever the reason, in a fight for rights, “uniform” is not a happy term.
There is nothing uniform about covering the faces of demonstrators with pepper spray.
There is nothing uniform about throwing cans of tear gas into crowds of young teenagers, students and the elderly.
There is nothing uniform about hiding behind uniforms and riot shields while crowds of people cower behind umbrellas.
There is nothing uniform about barricading citizens of a country from land, that is their own.
There is nothing uniform about calling yourself a civilian, when you hurt, imprison and demonise pioneers of a much-needed protest.
There is nothing uniform about creating the need for thousands to stand in sweltering heat for over 86 hours.
Your blue ribbon is proof that you do not even realise your privilege. Your blue ribbon shows your disregard for humanity. Your blue ribbon tell me that you are literate, but not educated.
Last year, research found that 20% of Hong Kong citizens are in poverty. That’s roughly 1.3 million people. There are people earning less the HKD 12,000 a month. Meanwhile, in 2012, there was a 35% rise in millionaires in Hong Kong. In our city, the predominant problem is the gap between the poor and the rich. We have made the poor invisible. We have made their suffering unheard of, so the rich can flourish. We have made it harder and harder for families to exist in comfort over the years.
A yellow ribbon symbolises the sun rising on the horizon. It is symbolic of the poor who will no longer take the leftovers of the leftovers that are handed to them. The government can send their uniforms, and their weapons, but in the end, they can’t kill us all.
A yellow ribbon is sign that inequality is a dormant volcano, and when it awakens, the lava doesn’t care if it is an inconvenience to the police who complain of sore feet. They have faced the unjustified wrath of the rich and the government for far too long. It all stops now. You can try to minimise their impact with your weapons and censorship, but they will only come back angrier, with more passion, with more supporters.
Because unlike you, blue ribbons, rich or poor, the majority of us have the common human reflexes to empathise, to understand the very basic nature of this fight. And above all, fight, if anything, for improving the conditions of the 1.3 million people. Unlike you, blue ribbons, we recognise that there is no one human life more important than another. Uniforms will come and go, but our humanity will not falter, unlike yours, blue ribbons.