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The Elderly Are Nothing If Not Valuable

  • Date Submitted: 12/30/2011 01:19 AM
  • Flesch-Kincaid Score: 51.5 
  • Words: 1116
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Sustained and unremitting as the government’s effort is, there is still a long way to go
before we, Hongkongers, succeed in fulfilling our coveted dream of transforming our place
into a genuine cosmopolitan city in the eyes of foreigners. Economic recession, political
uncertainty and hectic lifestyle are not the stumbling block. Presumably the case of Chan
Pak, a retired old man, speaks volumes about our deficiency. Chan Pak, born in 1950s,
contributed a lot to Hong Kong, leading a hand-to-mouth existence during Japanese
occupation, working hard to convert our place to the stage of industrialization from an
entreport economy, and playing an invaluable role in our progress to an international
financial centre. Now, he is doing something conducive to his health more than regular
exercise---pulling a trolley full of cardboard through traffic every day in an attempt to make
ends meet. His case is not something of distress. What is really disheartening, however, is
that such an ironical episode is commonly staged here.

The above case sheds light on the elderly problems, a matter aside which we always brush. Do you have a feeling of bewilderment about Chan Pak’s plight? Do you have a sense of sympathy for what he is tormented with? And do you have a sense of guilt for turning a blind eye to the elderly around you? If the answers are in affirmative, it is high time we probed into the issue in a serious manner.

The dreadful predicament of the old in Hong Kong can be viewed from a host of
perspectives. To commence with, it is physical abuse that assails them. Getting old enough, it does not take much to realize that the elderly are prone to physical weakness. In times of quarrels with their families, it is not uncommon that they are always on the receiving end without much say on these disputes. This accounts for why some families take full advantage of their inferiority and deploy violent means to settle the disputes in extreme cases for they expect the...


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