The results of the district council elections in Hong Kong on Sunday have been unveiled. Both pro-establishment and opposition camps had satisfaction and regrets. The pro-establishment camp lost three seats compared to 2011 but maintained its majority, with the Democratic Alliance for the Betterment and Progress of Hong Kong increasing its seats to 119. The pan-democrat camp added seats to its 2011 tally, but several of its prominent figures were defeated.
In the first major election after the Occupy Central movement last year, the turnout saw a record at 47 percent. Active young voters enabled at least six "Umbrella Soldiers" to be elected, which is noteworthy.
After the turbulent year of politics, the election indicates that the political landscape in Hong Kong largely remains unchanged compared with that before the movement. It means the public has consistent opinions about the path that Hong Kong is following and that mainstream society hopes to explore changes under a stable big picture. Since last year, the opposition and external forces have exhausted their tricks to attack Hong Kong's Basic Law. But the election shows the maximum extent of the impact they can produce.
But there are losses. It is especially noteworthy that many young voters voted for the pan-democrat camp or "Umbrella Soldiers" and this triggers concerns about the possible relationship between the "Umbrella Soldiers" and the pan-democrat camp.
It's increasingly significant to work on Hong Kong youth. If new thinking is not absorbed, Hong Kong will face a tense political situation. The booing of the Chinese national anthem by Hong Kong football fans may be translated into votes in elections in the region.
Properly educating young people in Hong Kong entails more than just courses and textbooks. The overall environment of Hong Kong society and of China in its entirety has to be included in the education.
Young people in Hong Kong grow up in a rather conservative environment. The language, textbooks and teachers actually tell young people that Hong Kong is part of the West. They are actually taught to consider themselves as in a marginalized position and hence to be allegiant to and worship the West. However, with the rise of China, the development landscape in the world has fundamentally changed.
Multi-dimensional exchanges are needed between young people in the Chinese mainland and Hong Kong. The youth of Hong Kong has to face the competition and emotions of the mainland and handle relations with the mainland. They are not empowered to vent their anger without limit.
This may lead to some problems in the short term, but it shows the reality. Having been doted on, young people in Hong Kong have to learn the frank opinions from the mainland. They also need to know that Hong Kong is too small for them to shun the reality. They have to face up to challenges.
The stable general picture shown by the district-level election enables Hong Kong to daringly explore ways to run the region. Hong Kong needs to be resolute in seeking breakthroughs on major issues.