I used to read news of which and which political parties protest for so and so. At times, some activists even challenged the police and minor clashes between them. I have never understood why people gather for protest. Why would someone protest for something that cannot be rectified (perhaps that’s the point)? Where are all these people come from? Is there anything else they want to achieve?
Here’s what I think
First, there must be a spark – it could be anything that causes unjust to the citizen or certain groups of people. Second, there has to be groups and leaders – they lead and organize a protest. Third, through the social media these days, they spread the words on why, when, where and the objectives of a protest.
The month of June has been dedicated to the June Fourth Incident. We, the Chinese people concern anything that’s related to that incident especially this very month. It’s a bad timing for Li Wangyang passed away due to some mysterious reasons in June. Anything comes out from the Chinese government seems to be mysterious. So that kept everyone thinking if truth is base on a fact and lie is simply a cover-up. Moreover, the Li’s family are being
held captive monitored and guarded. Their cellphone has been cut off. You can read more about the news online.
We, the Hong Kong people are very sensitive to anything related to the June Fourth Incident and the activists behind it. I think I was confused by the media of what’s really happening. So I wished to know more by going to the street. What I really heard was only from the news media. It’s sorry to say our media is really controlling our minds. The degree on how we perceive it is less I want to discuss here. It’s almost like the news these days are already predetermined (pre-digested like). Historically, China is not doing too good of a job handling the political activists. I came to believe, there’s something fuzzy on the report of Li’s death. Something’s missing.
The march started in Central and its destination was the Republic of China liaison office in Sheung Wan. I kind of timed it when I leave home and hoped to see some of the protesters in action. And yes, i did.
At first, I walked closer and saw protesters from two groups (political party & Art community). I still don’t know what art community has to do with it. But they had many young participants. Many know what they were there for. There was even a church community with banner. News report says there were 30 different communities joined this march.
To be fair, I think many of us don’t even know Li Wangyang prior to the report of his death. I want to be rational by not going with the flow (it’s Hong Kong people’s nature to go with the flow). I want to think it through enough before saying who’s right, who’s wrong. I have the absolute right to judge and not clouded by the tainted news media. It’s necessarily to filter the local news and get different viewpoints.
I have never seen a street I often walk by that occupied. The scenes were spectacular. The crowd was mixed with sane people, weird people (this is one of the main reasons why I documented this), young adults and some reporters/photographers. I was a photographer there who want to document the event. So now I know where all those Leica M owners are. I saw many Leica Ms and some film SLRs. Athough this is less of my concern ;X
I do not want to disrespect anyone by labeling anyone. Just imagine the sane people get influenced by the weird people. It’s a dangerous thought. Just think about the sane-looking weird people make speech and chant for a few lines, then get nods by the normal sane people. The ‘go with the flow’ effect carries onto the rest of the crowd. My message to you is to think it though for any rally, protest, march you’re attending. Think about who’s leading you, what other acts is he/she doing. Is it right or wrong?
I witnessed the leader of a political party told the crowd to swear/curse on the Chinese Government. I really don’t know who started it (maybe it happened before). Although they were not using the exact swear word to curse, it’s awfully close. They were all having fun with it anyway. This leads me back to my message to you. Are you being mind controlled? They won’t be reading this. I still urge them to use the more appropriate tone in the public. There were young children in the crowd not to mention the nearby residents in the area.
The political parties always complained on the arrangements of such event, such as which road they’d open/close, whether pepper spray is necessary. After knowing many minor clashes were usually initiated by the weird individuals, the police are MOST OF THE TIME using the right force to maintain public safety.
I’m a subjective, calm, rational individual. You can disagree all you want. These are my subjective reflections of a protest/march.
Just a block away from the protest, a nice gentleman was enjoying his day by painting. You see you could always take one step back and think before you act. Be a wiser person!
In terms of photography, it’s my first time photographing a protest march. I think it’s only a matter of timing and a bit of composition. You don’t really need guts to photograph people. When I needed to get a closer look on main characters in the frame, I simply walk through the crowd and get really close. My Voigtlander OVF has been doing an excellent job so far. 28mm is awesome to photograph event like this.