Hong Kong’s young need to grow up: A response by a Hong Kong youth

My friend sent me this article from SCMP. I seriously recommend reading it before reading what I have to say, or it might not make sense at all. The point of the article, put very bluntly, is that he’s telling youngsters in Hong Kong to get off their gadgets, grow up, get a job, and move out of their parents’ homes.

As an anime fan who tries to go to AGCHK for at least one of the five days each year, and someone who does spend a fair amount of time watching anime on morning & evening commutes, I might be biased against him and his opinion. To be honest, there was no real reason for him to drag us into his article to prove a point about how we’re too addicted to our phones. I feel like he hasn’t done sufficient research – he’s leeching off the stereotype that people who watch anime or read comics are losers who live in their parent’s basements. I’m not trying to fight back with ‘but I’m not like that!’ or ‘not all teenagers!’ but I refuse to sit quietly while a whole group of people are reduced to a one-dimensioned stereotype where they do nothing but literally watch anime all day.

First of all, where is the harm in cosplaying or partaking in anime/ comic conventions? It doesn’t mean we’re going to one every day; that’s not the only hobby we have. I have other hobbies, including reading, crafting and writing poetry, which i make time for on top of my usual schoolwork and out of class activities.

Secondly, there is nothing wrong with being on your phone while on public transport. Imagine how weird it would be for you if the person sitting next to you on the bus started talking to you like you were an old friend of theirs. Not everyone who is on their phone is gaming or watching anime, but even if they are, what’s it got to do with you? They’re keeping to themselves, so why should it pose as a bother to you?

Moving on from defending one of my main hobbies, and more onto defending my generation. So, housing prices are high. I know. I also know the queue for public housing takes at least 5 years, and that land in Hong Kong is quite limited. It’s probably slightly defensive and bratty of me to say this, but: is that our generation’s fault? We don’t have control over property prices. What if we’re already trying to move out, and that’s why there’s so little flats available, which in turn spikes all the property prices due to the large deficit in housing? Even if we were able to get a job, we wouldn’t be able to afford it.

Jobs don’t grow on trees. Everyone knows that. Most jobs require many years of experience to have a reasonable amount of pay, so we’re forced to find jobs that pay the minimum wage, which is barely enough to support ourselves. Again, we’re the younger generation. We don’t have control over the amount of jobs in the job market, or how much they pay. We could work harder, but could we compare to more experienced workers that have been in the field for 10 years more than us? Definitely not.

Apparently the new requirement for being an adult is getting a good job and supporting yourself while living alone. Given that most of us graduate halfway into our 20’s, I think it’s quite reasonable that we’re still trying to figure life out at 27 or 28. Finding a job immediately after graduation is easier said than done (admittedly, I wouldn’t know this. Just a guess) and I’ll throw in, like, 3 years to get adjusted to life without school. And yet we’re still expected to get married in that time, before we reach our 30’s. Honestly, sex and marriage aren’t that big of an issue to me. I just think peoples’ lives should be stable before they choose a partner for life, and decide to bring new life into the world.

I’m almost done. At this point, I’m going to pull some phrases from the article and just shit on it. “My eldest son, 24 and still living at home, technically does not fit the mould as he has a job and a good income” I’d like to just point out the bias in this sentence. “Technically does not fit the mould”? I’m pretty sure it’s because you don’t want to be seen as the hypocrite whose own son is the very kind of person you are so thoroughly disappointed in. So what if he has a job and good income? “Good” is very subjective, and well, he still fits into the category described by this article – living at home with his parents. Hey, y’know, maybe some advice for your son: “turn that screen off and go and meet some people in person.”

And so, with just a mere 12 words, he has summarised his own article. He’s telling us to get a life. All this is very ironic, since I read the article online, virtually, on a screen. If I had heeded his advice sooner and gotten a life, I wouldn’t have had to read those words. Last comments before I wrap this up: I’m quite sure internet dating is a thing, as are Skype interviews for jobs. I’m sure most jobs require the applicant’s resume, but where on earth will they get that, if it’s frowned upon for applicants to have a virtual life? But hey, I wouldn’t know jack shit, since I’m just a lowlife who’s still living with her parents, still single and without a job to support herself. God. what a nuisance to her parents she must be.

Onto a more positive note, I’m done ranting/ replying to this awful article. I don’t agree with a large chunk of it (as implicitly stated above) but feel free to comment your thoughts of the article or my response! Hopefully I won’t end the year with this post (I probably won’t) but I’m quite busy right now, so we’ll see. :-)

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