I still remember how I became concerned about academic freedom for the first time. I was studying abroad, contemplating whether I should take a class that touched upon the sensitive subject of the Tiananmen Massacre. In the first lecture, a fellow classmate said to me, “Apparently someone went around campus telling other Chinese students not to take the class. So yeah, I’m having second thoughts about whether I should take this class or not.”
I am a Christian and a lawyer, and I support the legalisation of same-sex marriage. As a Christian, I understand the solemnity and sanctity of a marriage ordained by God, and the theological views on homosexuality. As a lawyer, my spiritual heart is given to protecting all marginalised members of society. I do not intend to “convert” anyone from their personal beliefs but I would like to explain how I reconcile the two seemingly conflicting views.
When more high-profile protests such as the Umbrella Movement failed to bring real changes to our political system, what should we realistically aim to achieve through the July 1 marches? When the proliferation of new media allows us to express our political sentiments and views more easily, are protests or marches still relevant? When society is filled with diverse voices, is it still possible to deliver clear and strong messages through rallies? The July 1 march has its unique and symbolic meaning to us. However, if we want to keep on fighting, what is the way forward?
A few weeks ago, Beijing-friendly columnist Chris Wat Wing-yin (屈穎妍) issued a letter through her lawyers to radio host and columnist Tsang Chi-ho (曾志豪), alleging that his article titled “The Wat Wing-yin Phenomenon”, published in Apple Daily, had caused her harm. Wat demanded Tsang publish an apology and clarification. Although the exact contents of Wat’s letter are not publicly available, it is a fair guess that her demands were based on an accusation of defamation.