This year some conservative groups called for no overseas intervention in Singapore politics. They petitioned that foreigners should not be allowed to attend PinkDot so as to not “interfere” with Singaporean culture, as though they are spreading homosexuality here. I find this amusing because it couldn’t be further from reality.
What we have in Singapore is a moving average of tolerance and acceptance towards disabled and special-needs people studying, working and socialising amongst us. I hope that we will shift that moving average away from the ‘zoo’ mentality towards respecting the right of every living person (even if we have to accommodate their disabilities and special needs) to be treated like any other human being.
However, is the PAP likely to set up an independent election commission? All its actions show its resentment towards dissent against its rule and desire to suppress alternative political views, even as it pays lip service to being inclusive in governance. It continually criticises and makes things difficult for alternative media. Ministers threaten to sue ordinary citizens into bankruptcy for defamation.
“If our officers are in plain clothes, they will identify themselves by producing the warrant card.” It is unclear if this is official police protocol but since it comes from the police’s spokesman, one would assume that it is. So, the obvious question is: what is the police’s action if one of its officers failed to adhere to this protocol?
60 million died in World War II. The majority of deaths (62%) were civilians, who lived in the wrong time in the wrong place and died as a result of a decisions of a few leaders who wanted more power. War, and any form of violence, does not benefit anyone, except those sitting in the back row pulling the strings for their own gain.
There are many more truly important issues for Singaporeans to get excited and worked up about. Chinese-educated Singaporeans are no longer ‘stuttering’ with their blades hovering overhead, trying to get their message across. The ‘Chinese helicopter’ has landed! Applause! And lighten-up, folks.
So when Singaporeans complain about the potential higher costs of food, lodging and transport needed to afford a maid in the future (when the supply of maids will be drastically reduced while demand remains constant or even increases), perhaps it sheds more light on how Singaporeans have come to need maids more than the maids need us.
There are people who feel Amos Yee needs to be taught a lesson, and it would be foolish to deny that he has stepped on too many toes. Yet the question remains, what kind of society would we devolve into if we cannot even guarantee the safety of a teenage boy when he is assaulted by a much larger assailant in full view of the public?
ELD should do everyone a favour and come out with clarifications for their actions. Or perhaps they would like everyone to think that the rules of Cooling-Off-Day simply mean that no one, nada, zip, nothing, should be published about politics on Cooling-Off-Day, period.
Mr Bilahari’s views on local politicians aside, his lectures on international affairs read like a primer with a realist slant. More significantly, the average Singaporean might do well to understand that this same realist perspective informs foreign policy decision making in Singapore’s MFA, and in the higher echelons of the Singapore government, especially considering how consistent the Singapore government’s foreign policy stance has been between senior leaders (read Lee Kuan Yew’s book on Hard Truths and Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong’s interview with TIME). Understanding Mr Bilahari’s lectures gives insights into the mind of the MFA diplomat, and for those who seek to challenge his views, provides a foundation on how to approach foreign policy debates from a Singaporean point of view.