Many young people are protesting in Hong Kong.
Hong Kong is part of China. However, for 155 years it was owned by Britain; it was returned to China in 1997. While it was under British rule, Hong Kong became quite different from what is known as “mainland” China. Hong Kong operates, in many ways, more like Europe or North America.
When China received Hong Kong back, it promised to let the region have democratic elections.
However, it seems to have gone back on that promise. In 2017 there will be an election to choose new leaders for Hong Kong. But China’s government has decided that not just anyone can run. Only people who have been approved by China will be allowed to run for election.
Many people became upset by this, and young adults in Hong Kong began peaceful protests.
The students have been gathering in the streets of Hong Kong to let everyone know they want democratic elections.
The protests are being called the “Umbrella Revolution” because many of the students are using umbrellas to protect themselves from pepper spray the police are using against some protesters.
The Chinese government has not broken up the demonstrations. However, they say they will not change their mind about allowing free, democratic elections to take place in Hong Kong.
Wednesday (today) is a significant national holiday in China, called National Day. The crowds of protesters will likely block many routes taken by holiday-goers and shoppers that day.
No one knows how long the protests will continue, or whether the students will be successful. People around the world are watching Hong Kong to find out what will happen.
UPDATE: Hundreds of thousands of protesters have taken to the streets today, National Day; so far, the protests have been peaceful.
By Kathleen Tilly
The first sentence of the article is: “Many young people are protesting in Hong Kong.” Why do you think many of the people who are protesting are young? Why are protesters in general often young adults?
Reading Prompt: Making Inferences
China is not breaking up the protests, yet they “say they will not change their mind about allowing free, democratic elections to take place in Hong Kong.” Why do you think China is not allowing democratic elections to take place? Why do you think they will not allow anyone who is interested to run for the elections?
Use stated and implied ideas in texts to make inferences and construct meaning (OME, Reading: 1.6).
Develop and explain interpretations of increasingly complex or difficult texts using stated and implied ideas from the texts to support their interpretations (OME, Reading: 1.6).
Language Feature: Semi-colon
A semi-colon (;) is used to separate two parts of a sentence. The two parts are can be about a similar idea but they are often two separate ideas.
For example. the following sentence uses a semi-colon: “However, for 155 years it was owned by Britain; it was returned to China in 1997.”
Write three sentences using a semi-colon.