Citizen Journalist Hospitalized After Being Roughed Up by Hong Kong Riot Police as Umbrella Movement Protests Turn Ugly
October 17, 2014
It is ten-hour-old news now that a Youtube video journalist was thrown onto the sidewalk while trying to show Hong Kong riot police handcuffing a protester in the Mong Kok district. The journalist, woozy after his head hit the concrete, was hospitalized with multiple injuries.
That journalist’s name is James Bang, and he is a 28-year-old digital strategies consultant. Bang had taken his live-streaming set-up consisting of a HTC One smartphone, external mic and battery packs to the Mong Kok section of Hong Kong shortly before sun-up Friday as the HK police conducted a blitzkrieg-like raid on a Occupy Central student protesters’ encampment just after 6 a.m.
Bang quipped to anyone who happened to be listening in the wee hours of the morning that he kept running into the same police officers and that at times he was jostled and surrounded by multiple officers who seemed to be assigned to shadow and disrupt his activities as he moved about the city’s barricaded protest bases.
Just before the shit hit the fan, Bang told of a reporter for Fashion One magazine walking up to him and cautioning him to “be very careful.”
A Hong Kong-born ethnic Korean, Bang had seemingly been singled-out by HK authorities as a “troublesome journalist” as a result of his earlier live feeds of the student-led pan-democratic civil disobedience that had embarrassed the Beijing-appointed government for the past three weeks.
The fact that a TVB news crew on Thursday had captured footage of plainclothes cops taking a handcuffed protester around a dark corner of a building to beat and kick him had further frustrated the powers that be.
In response they began a concerted media censorship campaign, which included blocking the BBC’s website. There’s yet no evidence the government also decided to look for the solo journalist who had been featured in The New Yorker magazine’s Oct. 8 article by Louisa Lim entitled: THE THUGS OF MAINLAND CHINA. And that journalist’s name is James Bang.
Remember that name, because I doubt whether Reporters Without Borders or some such other mainstream media organization will be making a cause célèbre out of the beat down of an uncredentialed citizen correspondent broadcasting what he sees with only a smartphone and using the bandwidth of the weird-sounding, Bitcoin-pimping World Crypto Network. To me, like the amazing protest movement he was reporting on, James Bang, the unaffiliated outsider, has become a part of a new heroic tradition now unfolding on the streets of Hong Kong.
As Tupac told us:
I guess change is good for any of us
Whatever it take for any of y’all niggaz to get up out the hood
Shit, I’m wit cha, I ain’t mad at cha
Got nuttin but love for ya, do your thing boy
December 22, 2013
SOUTH KOREAN RIOT POLICE deploy irritant chemical spray against demonstrators supporting striking railway union workers Sunday evening in Seoul WATCH ~ Unedited video —> http://youtu.be/Ce0R1dbrJH4
July 15, 2013
Japanese Americans all across the land from Vermont to Hawaii will celebrate the ancient Buddhist Obon festival in the coming weeks with joyous folk dancing, religious observances and traditional Japanese foods in what is the most authentic cultural event remaining in Japanese America.
Obon Festival season continues through August and marks the zenith of the Buddhist year. But more than just a chance to take colorful photos and eat Japanese comfort foods, Obon has been described as a physical manifestation of meditation or prayer through dance, a Buddhist teaching come alive.
Obon [ お盆 ] originates from the story of Mokuren, a disciple of the Buddha, who during a meditative trance saw his deceased mother suffering in the Realm of Hungry Ghosts (the Buddhist equivalent of purgatory). Greatly disturbed, he went to the Buddha and asked how he could release his mother from this suffering. Buddha instructed him to make offerings and to meditate on the life of his mother. Mokuren followed the Buddha’s instructions and he began to see the true nature of her past unselfishness and the many sacrifices that she had made for him. The disciple, happy because of his mother’s release and grateful for his mother’s kindness, danced with joy. From this dance of joy came Obon, which has been celebrated for thousands of years as a time in which ancestors and their sacrifices are remembered and appreciated.
~ Originally posted by “Yellowkid” in August 2009. H/T to Ms.Yuri (Yuri Yoshida Photography)
March 11, 2013
END THEME ~ Japanese director Shunji Iwai and middle school student-turned anti-nuclear activist Fujinami Kokoro survey the almost surreal devastation in the aftermath of the triple disasters that hit Iwai’s native northeastern Japan March 11, 2011. Music: “Breath” by alternative rock band Radwimps.