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"We stood on opposite sides at a pro-Hong Kong rally—and became friends"

2 min read

I've been a huge proponent of Lausan's coverage of the HK protests from an intersectional, decolonial perspective, with a focus on everything from the effects on migrant workers to how to avoid romanticizing HK's past under British rule.

Reading the piece "We stood on opposite sides at a pro-Hong Kong rally—and became friends", felt like a gut punch. I fully stand on the side of the six demands made by the Hong Kong protestors but as part of the Asian diaspora it has been heartbreaking to see xenophobic and right-wing elements try and co-opt the movement under the guise of "spreading democracy" and be unable to express that support without blocking with these people.

I believe that it's vital that the Asian diaspora - especially for the sake of the queer, dark-skinned, Muslim, and/or working class folks among us, and other minority groups - don't bring with us the old pettiness from back home. Once we're out here we're all united in one struggle for our very existence. It becomes incumbent upon us to seek each other out and offer support where we can, and stand firmly against bigots and would-be colonizers.

Like one of the authors of the article, JS said:

This is where the diaspora may play a critical role: it is overseas that Hong Kongers and Chinese people can still safely engage in dialogue. For Hong Kongers hoping to challenge China’s rising nationalism, it is crucial that we build stronger relationships with the millions of Chinese living outside of the Mainland’s borders. Here, perhaps we can imagine an entirely new relationship between Hong Kongers and Mainlanders—one that is not based on nativism or nationalism, but a shared sense of solidarity.