I have not yet finished the book. Yet I cannot help but be reminded of scenes I saw at Auschwitz.
Even more so, I was struck by the analogy to what we are experiencing in Hong Kong. Of course, the inequity that currently exist in Hong Kong is incomparably light when placed side by side with what happened in Auschwitz and other Nazi concentration camps. Still, there is a striking parallel.
Frankl describes the Capos, “prisoners who acted as trustees, having special privileges”. They carried out the orders of the jailers. They beat the other prisoners. They felt they have higher status than other prisoners. They identified with the jailers rather than with the prisoners. Yet they could lose their status as Capos at any time, and be sent to the “oven” - death chambers just like the other prisoners.
We have the equivalence of the Capos in Hong Kong. Some of the pro-establishment types who feel they have a higher status than the rest of us, who are so eager to carry out the wishes of their masters in persecuting the rest of us. They probably do not believe it, yet they can also lose the favour of their masters and be discarded very quickly.
On the other hand, even the prisoners in the Nazi concentration camps can retain their consciousness, their sanity, and choose to live with meaning and dignity, even in the face of extreme brutality. If they can, so can we.