"Joshua Wong, a 17-year-old student activist has been at the center of the democracy movement that has rattled the Chinese government’s hold on this city."
"In reality, Mr. Wong is troubling confirmation for the authorities that the first generation in Hong Kong to grow up under Chinese rule is by many measures also the one most alienated from Beijing’s influence. He was born less than nine months before this former British colony’s handover to China in 1997, and raised here at a time when the party has tried mightily to win over the people and shape them into patriotic Chinese citizens.
His prominence in the protest movement also embodies a shift in politics here — youth anger amplified over the Internet, beyond the orbit of traditional political parties — that has confounded the local government and infuriated its Communist supervisors in the mainland.”
"Mr. Wong told The New York Times in a [July] interview, “Electoral reform is a generational war.” …
“If you told people five years ago that high school students would get involved in politics, they wouldn’t have believed you… For students, what we have is persistence in our principles and stubbornness in our ideals… If students don’t stand in the front line, who will?””
At 17, Setting Off Protests That Roil Hong Kong
"Since the 1997 handover of Hong Kong to China, the semi-autonomous city has operated under a "one country, two systems" formula, allowing a limited democracy. In August, the Chinese government announced plans to vet candidates in Hong Kong’s 2017 elections, virtually assuring only pro-Beijing politicians would be on the ballots. Student groups and pro-democracy supporters have taken to the streets in recent days to protest the limitations and to demand universal suffrage. Tens of thousands of demonstrators have occupied Hong Kong’s Central District, bringing parts of the city to a standstill. The protests are one of the largest political challenges to Beijing since the 1989 Tiananmen Square crackdown. Chinese officials have scolded protesters and warned against any foreign interference."
Occupy Hong Kong | InFocus
“It is so important for information and ideas to flow freely over the Internet and through the media, because that’s how we discover the truth, that’s how we learn what’s really happening in our communities, in our country and our world. That’s how we decide which values and ideas we think are best — by questioning and debating them vigorously, by listening to all sides of the argument and by judging for ourselves. And believe me, I know how this can be a messy and frustrating process. My husband and I are on the receiving end of plenty of questioning and criticism from our media and our fellow citizens, and it’s not always easy, but we wouldn’t trade it for anything in the world. Because time and again, we have seen that countries are stronger and more prosperous when the voices and opinions of all citizens can be heard.”
FLOTUS in China