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Monday, 12 May 2014

How do we know what we know?

I read this and was stunned: Hong Kong "not only has one of the lowest crime rates in the world, it ranks third in a list compiled by the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime in 2011 of places with the least homicides.
Hong Kong — with an intentional homicide rate of 0.2 per 100,000 people in the last 16 years — only lost out to Monaco and Palau, where there have been zero recorded murders." (Travel article 10 things Hong Kong does better)

Now I've been to Hong Kong, and I didn't experience any fearful, violent situations. In fact, we had a lovely time, it's a great city. So I'm not sure why I was so surprised by this fact. Monaco didn't surprise me at all - who couldn't be happy there (and it's so tiny)? It's not that I thought Hong Kong was a dangerous place, but it is like a big city, and with that comes a certain level of crime (as does Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane and so on).
After further thought, I've decided it's the fault of the movies I watch. In HK made films (or Chinese films, that are set in HK), there are drug lords and shoot outs galore - or just martial art violence. So I've just accepted a 'Hollywood' version of events as reality, without even thinking about it. Jackie Chan, I blame you for my ignorance.

Which got me thinking, what else have I done this with? Is my reality based on fictions I've acquired and taken as truths? Unfortunately, you don't know what you don't know. But it has made me think perhaps I need to be more open minded on ideas and experiences (and places) or at least think about the basis for some of my opinions.

Have you ever had your reality shift in an instant, based on misinformation?

Linking up with Jess for IBOT.

16 comments:

  1. Wow! I did not know that. Hong Kong just looks better and better ...
    L @ DFF

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    1. I know, right?! It's such a weird fact! (in a good way, obvs!)

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  2. Well today wasn't wasted because I definitely learned something I didn't know !!! But you are right - it's hard to know what you don't know.
    Have a great day !
    Me

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  3. Well thank you for that info Lydia. I actually thought the same way as you, damn Jackie Chan!
    I love HK because that's where John is from x

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  4. Thanks for that fact on Hong Kong - I've only been to the airport but it is on my list. I love being surprised by places and in my work in marketing and economic development for City of Gold Coast I love finding stories that just bust the stereotypes people have about the place I call home.

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  5. I'm surprised to learn this also. Yes, I can understand Monaco, but like you I guess I thought Hong Kong would have been a little more rough and tumble. Would love to get there one day.

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  6. I loved being in Hong Kong .... now I know why. Thanks

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  7. Yes so true, we often just presume things because of the way they are portrayed in movies, the media. Like NY actually has one of the lowest crime/murder rates in the world now - that will surprise a peeps I'm sure.

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  8. Oh this is something I think about ALL the time. The idea that our perception (truth or otherwise) is in fact our reality. I'm quite sure that I have a Hollywood-skewed reality for so many things and perhaps even have Hollywood-skewed nightmares! Didn't know this interesting fact about HK - such a lovely place xx

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  9. See now this makes me think 'why?' What standards and principles are they as a society setting in place, particularly in their school systems, that there crime rate is so low? Cause we could stand to learn a lot from them.

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  10. Yes my reality shifts every time I walk past a Fire Station and it is not full of hunks. In reality Fire Stations are populated by old dudes and girls. So much for all those calenders :-)

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  11. I didn't know this either but I still didn't enjoy my visit there when I went 4 years ago. I also know that Hong Kong has a high population and they live packed like sardines in their apartments. Maybe living closely together has helped them to respect others nd each other hence the low crime.

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  12. I didn't know that - if only we could analyse and learn something from it and see our Aussie cities free of crime!

    visiting today from #teamIBOT xxx

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  13. What I want to know is why is the crime so low ?

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  14. Wow. I did not know that and, for no apparent reason, it does surprise me. We need to figure out what they're doing right and implement that here!

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  15. Wow that is awesomely low crime rate...the cynic in me wonders though if it's really that low or if maybe the crimes just aren't reported.

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