New Legco elect: Hong Kong young people have ‘nowhere to bang’

A comment made by newly elected lawmaker Yau Wai-ching alluding to young people’s lack of privacy for sexual activity in Hong Kong this week has sparked fierce debate.

Speaking at a forum on the future of Hong Kong at the Hong Kong Polytechnic University on Monday Oct. 3, 25-year-old Yau of political group Youngspiration said, “Even if we wanted to go banging, [we] couldn’t find a room to do it.”

She used the slang Cantonese phrase “bok yeh”, which directly translates as “hitting stuff”. We decided to go with “bang” for the purpose of this article, but please feel free to supplement it for “shag”, “screw”, “hit that”, or whatever other term you prefer.

Yau was responding to an audience member’s question on the city’s welfare and immigration policies when she commented on the lack of living space for young people in Hong Kong. 

She said that the pressures graduates face in repaying their student loans means they’re unable to afford rent, resulting in a lack of space to get it on.

And lord knows nothing releases pressure better than hitting stuff.

Her remark has caused debate among netizens on her Facebook page. One commenter called her “brainless” for using the slang expression and criticised her for failing to find a more appropriate term. 

Some, however, praised her for speaking out on the lack of privacy for young people as a result of unaffordable living spaces.

Yau has since written a 700-word Facebook post reflecting on the Polytechnic University forum and her comment. As of press time, the post has attracted some 1,800 “reactions” and almost 300 shares.

Clearly not heeding her critics, Yau wrote, “Not only we do need a space to bang, we also need [to focus on] our future prospects.” 

“Under debt, young people are facing limited options in spaces to bang in… What dreams can we have for our future?” 

We, however, see no reason why young dreams, just like all dreams, can’t be realised in by-the-hour hotels.


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