The bigger they are, the harder they fall. This is a well-known English saying. The meaning is simple. It means the more powerful or influential people are, the more they will suffer or be humiliated when they are defeated or when bad things happen to them. I thought of this saying after watching Chief Executive Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor humbly apologizing for the debacle she caused to herself by insisting on an extradition agreement with Mainland China. The word “debacle” means something that fails completely in an embarrassing way. The chief executive’s proposed extradition agreement with mainland China was a debacle because it failed completely after two million people joined a mass protest against it on a sweltering (uncomfortably hot) day.
As the chief executive, Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor is Hong Kong’s most powerful person. That’s why when she had to apologize for her debacle after two million people protested, it was very humiliating for her. Ordinary people who apologize for debacles would not have to suffer or be humiliated so much. That’s why there is a well-known saying that the bigger they are, the harder they fall. Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor is a very arrogant person. If you are arrogant, it means you are proud and think you are very important. She often scolds senior government officials and even journalists. That’s why many journalists didn’t show sympathy when she humbly apologized for her failure.
I have known the chief executive for many years but only as a journalist, not as a close friend. Journalists should not be close friends with senior government officials because that would affect their independence. I was surprised to see our proud chief executive looking so broken during her apology on live TV. The word “broken” used this way means defeated. I felt sorry for her. Friends asked me if Hong Kong people should give her a second chance. I believe in giving everyone a second chance if they apologize. But as chief executive, Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor deserves a second chance only if she is truly sorry and can prove daily she will listen to public opinion.
The bigger they are, the harder they fall.這是一句家喻戶曉的諺語，它的意思很簡單，就是爬得愈高，摔得愈重；愈有權力和影響力的人，當被打倒或遭逢禍患之時，他們所受的苦或凌辱會愈大。特首林鄭月娥堅持將引渡條例擴展至內地，給自己弄得一敗塗地（debacle），看過她為此而謙恭道歉之後，我就想起這番話來。Debacle一字是指某事徹底失敗、潰敗。特首建議與內地達成引渡協議是個debacle，因為在酷熱難耐（sweltering）的一天有二百萬人參與大型遊行反對修例之後，它已是徹底的失敗。
作為特首，林鄭月娥是香港最位高權重的人。因此，她在二百萬人遊行抗議之後，要為自己的潰敗（debacle）致歉，對她來說是很丟臉的。一般人為自己的潰敗（debacles）道歉，也不用那麼受罪或被羞辱。因此就有這句著名的話來：the bigger they are, the harder they fall. 林鄭月娥是個非常傲慢（arrogant）的人。若你是arrogant，即是說你是自大又自負的。她常責罵政府高官甚至記者。因此，當她謙恭地為自己的失敗道歉時，許多新聞工作者也不表同情。
Michael Chugani 褚簡寧