Tag Archives: 政治正確

形同虛設的語言歧視

香港立法會最近通過《種族歧視條例草案》﹐本來立法禁止種族歧視是好事﹐世界大多數先進國家也有相關法例。可是其中有關語言歧視的條文甚具爭議性﹐從報章上說該法例規定﹐各公私營機構要為少數族裔提供翻譯服務﹐否則便是語言歧視即屬違法。政府原先為安撫商界的不安﹐提出豁免語言歧視修訂條文。豈料竟然被立法會否決修訂﹐引起報章評論和各界的反彈。

其實政府提出的豁免語言歧視修訂條文﹐只不過是做場戲安撫商界的不安。若果細心閱讀種族歧視法例﹐就會發現法案根本不可能引起商界擔心的問題。法例只規定公私營機構要提供翻譯服務﹐但沒有規定翻譯服務必需是免費。其實各機構只需要設有應對少數種裔顧客的機制﹐如提供外判翻譯服務的連絡資料﹐就已經合乎法例的規定。

法案中對種族歧視的定義中﹐第三至五點中清楚例明﹐若果拒絕服務少數種裔的理由﹐是因為會引至成本上漲或影響作業流程﹐是可以豁免在種族歧視的定義之外。所有商界擔心要提供無理翻譯的情況﹐根本不足以構成種族歧視。當然這幾項並非自動豁免﹐需要經過法庭按個別情況作出判決。若果公私營機構真的被告上法庭﹐以他們的財力聘請資深大狀打官司﹐運用這幾項豁免條文免責不是難事。只要頭幾宗官司勝訴建立先例﹐要求供翻譯服務的語文歧視就形同虛設。政府提出修訂條文﹐只是把法案豁免得清楚明白﹐以免日後打官司浪費無謂的金錢罷了。

膚色種族是先天決定﹐是沒有人可以改變的事實﹐因此若以這些作為門檻標準﹐不乎合公平原則所以構成歧視。但語言是可以後天學習﹐在香港不懂中英文溝通困難生活不便﹐就只能怪自己為什麼不好好學習中英文﹐不能怪責人家不懂說你的土話。政府與其立法規管語文歧視﹐倒不如更改移民條例﹐來港居住的外國人必須接受語文評核﹐要懂得基本中文或英文才獲發簽證﹐徹底解決語文歧視的問題。在香港居住的少數族裔﹐若果不肯學習香港的語言﹐適應融入香港的生活﹐那他們留在香港做什麼﹐不如乾脆回老家算了。政府沒有責任為少數種裔提供翻譯服務﹐尤其那些不會為香港帶來經濟利益的少數語言﹐簡直是浪費納稅人的金錢。成日講民主不如搞次全民公投﹐看看香港有多少人願意支付少數種裔的翻譯費用﹖

參考資料﹕

Race Discrimination Bill – Part II – Section 4

Racial discrimination
(1) In any circumstances relevant for the purposes of any provision of this Ordinance, a person (“the discriminator”) discriminates against another erson if—
(a) on the ground of the race of that other person, the discriminator treats that other person less favourably than the discriminator reats or would treat other persons; or
(b) the discriminator applies to that other person a requirement or condition which the discriminator applies or would apply qually to persons not of the same racial group as that other person but—
(i) which is such that the proportion of persons of the same acial group as that other person who can comply with it is onsiderably smaller than the proportion of persons not of that racial group who can comply with it;
(ii) which the discriminator cannot show to be justifiable rrespective of the race of the person to whom it is applied; and
iii) which is to the detriment of the other person because that person cannot comply with it.
(2) For the purposes of subsection (1)(b)(ii), a requirement or condition is justifiable either—
(a) if it serves a legitimate objective and bears a rational and proportionate connection to the objective; or
(b) if it is not reasonably practicable for the person who allegedly discriminates against another person not to apply the requirement or condition.
(3) In determining for the purposes of subsection (2)(b) whether it is reasonably practicable for a person who allegedly discriminates against another person not to apply a requirement or condition, any relevant circumstances of the particular case may be taken into account including those referred to in subsection (4).
(4) The circumstances that may be taken into account include, but are not limited to—
(a) the nature of the benefit or detriment likely to accrue to or be suffered by, or the likely impact on, all persons concerned;
(b) an estimate of the proportion of persons likely to benefit out of all the persons concerned, if the requirement or condition is not applied;
(c) whether any activities of the person who allegedly discriminates against another person will be disrupted if the requirement or condition is not applied and, if so, the extent of the disruption; and
(d ) whether the person who allegedly discriminates against another person will need to provide additional services or facilities or incur additional expenditure (including recurrent expenditure), if the requirement or condition is not applied.(5) Nothing in subsection (3) or (4) is to be construed as requiring the person who allegedly discriminates against another person or any other person concerned to confer any benefit, suffer any detriment, provide any services or facilities or incur any expenditure which the person or that other person (as the case may be) is not otherwise required to confer, suffer, provide or incur.
(6) It is declared that, for the purposes of this Ordinance, segregating a person from other persons on the ground of the race of that person is treating that person less favourably than the other persons are treated.

公平咖啡不公平

最近公平咖啡十分流行﹐先是大學內的咖啡店只計售賣公平咖啡﹐大型連鎖星巴克也引入為其形像作宣傳 ﹐連我教會也有義工來賣公平咖啡籌款。跟據公平咖啡的支持者所說﹐雖然公平咖啡比普通咖啡貴些少﹐但可以幫助改善在落後國家中﹐以種植咖啡為生窮人的生 活。他們說我們在一杯咖啡付出金錢﹐最終只有不到十分一到達咖啡農手裏﹐其中的大部份給中間的咖啡貿易商人剝削掉。而咖啡農所得到的收入﹐有時甚至連達到 基本溫飽也有問題。公平咖啡就是要繞過那些中間人﹐直接把咖啡買賣雙方聯系起來﹐保證咖啡農有合理公平的收入。公平咖啡這構思看起來不錯﹐消費者在喝咖啡 之餘又可以作善事。只是有一點我想不明白﹐既然已經減去中間人的利潤﹐為什麼公平咖啡還會比普通咖啡更貴呢﹖

原來公平咖啡的背後的事實真相﹐是絕對不公平的貿易保護主義。傳統的咖啡商人﹐為求增加利潤保護既有市場﹐利用消費者的善良心理﹐去擊打新加入的競 爭者。他們巧立明目﹐成立公平咖啡的評審制度﹐讓消費者誤以為買公平咖啡可以幫助窮人。事實上公平咖啡的標則很簡單﹐就是每磅咖啡豆要以不少於$1.26 美元向咖啡農購入﹐即是大約市價的兩倍。可是標準中沒有指明﹐咖啡農有義務把多出來的收益分給農場的工人﹐我們多付出的錢﹐很有可能沒到達最需要的人手裏﹐只是養肥了地主。

咖啡市價比公平咖啡低這麼多﹐完全是因為經濟學上的供求定律。在九十年代初﹐咖啡的市價曾高至兩美元一磅﹐因而吸引新的投資者入場。隨著巴西和越南 加入咖啡種植市場﹐令咖啡的供應大量增加﹐導致到價格下降至今天六十美仙的水平。憑著先進科技耕作和合適的氣候﹐巴西和越南生產咖啡的成本﹐遠遠比傳統咖 啡產地中南美洲低﹐所以就算在下降後的市場﹐還是有利可圖。反之傳統的咖啡生產商﹐因為不能適應新的市場環境﹐在價格暴跌下就叫苦連天。舉個例子說明﹐收 成一百噸的咖啡﹐在巴西只需要一台機器十個工人兩個星期﹐在南美洲則要一百個工人和一個月的時間。試問傳統咖啡農這讓的工作效率﹐又怎能和新咖啡農競爭呢 ﹖事實上沒有大公司故意壓低咖啡價格﹐公平咖啡支持者口中的無良中間人﹐根本只是他們虛構出來的稻草人。一個天資聰穎的人﹐對比一個天資愚鈍﹐做事自然是 多快好省。若堅持要給兩人同樣的人工﹐就是對工作效率高的那人不公平了。不容許新加入者以低成本減價爭客源﹐就不能算得上是公平貿易了﹐枉公平咖啡還打公平二字作為招牌﹐真是一件很諷刺的事。

有人或會說公平咖啡證明中﹐包含咖啡豆的品質保證﹐所以公平咖啡質素高些。很可惜這也是與事實不乎﹐一般我們喝的咖啡是交貿商品﹐俗稱青咖啡﹐在交 貿市場中已有明確的品質分類﹐品質高的成交價自然會高些。所以公平咖啡的品質不一定比普通咖啡高﹐亦不是沖出來一定較好喝。市面上最貴最好喝的藍山咖啡不 是公平咖啡﹐只是以市價成交易的咖啡﹐但從來也沒有聽說過種藍山咖啡的農民會生活困難。利用固意誤導的手法﹐讓消費者付出更高的價錢﹐購買質素較低的商品﹐就是欺騙的行為。

眼睛雪亮的咖啡愛好者﹐不要再被暪騙了。只許售買公平咖啡而禁止普通咖啡﹐不單不能做善事﹐還對巴西越南的高效率咖啡農﹐和喝咖啡的消費者不公平。 請在容許可以選擇的情況下﹐儘量不要購買不公平的“公平咖啡”。寧可花多點錢喝杯真正的好咖啡﹐用市場訊號去告訴傳統咖啡農該走的方向。他們若不想被淘汰﹐就要保持競爭力﹐最佳辨法就是改為種稙高品質的咖啡了。