HOLEYBALONEY

Singaporeans vs Lee Kuan Yew

I’m shocked that there are so many people who lack empathy and basic decency, to actually wish that someone would ‘just die already’. You may not agree with his policies and actions, but it is impossible not to recognise that Lee Kuan Yew has dedicated his life to what he believes to be the best for Singapore.

At the most challenging of times, where we were in a state of flux, he made the hard decisions. We make many hard decisions in our life, and I guarantee that we have all questioned if we could not have done it better. However, we all made these decisions with the information we had, and to the best of our abilities. But the decisions that we make affect only us, and our immediate surroundings. The decisions that he has to make impacts the entire nation. The stress of that responsibility is not something that everyone has the strength to shoulder. And for that, I respect him deeply.

No government is perfect, and every government has idiots in power. We are no different. Housing is ridiculously expensive, standard of living continues to rise but not salaries, our police force is pretty much useless, among other things.

Where we have fared a million times better than other countries, is that our basic necessities in life has been well taken care of. And I’m not talking about the material stuff. Those are secondary. It is the intangibles that truly matter. Safety, health, family.

It is safe to walk on the streets at night, and we do not have to suffer the fear of being robbed at gunpoint, of being raped, murdered, or any of the horrible things that occur frequently in so many other countries. Air is fresh so I don’t worry about dying because I run or cycle outdoors often. We are small so I can work in the same city where my family is, instead of having to look for work in another state / country.

And we have all these things, because a certain someone made many decisions during his leadership. Because a certain someone took a dictatorial hand in national matters.

Do I think we need to change? Of course I do. We can have debates and discussions about the arts, about homosexual topics, and everything under the sun because we are at a stage where we have the basic foundations and can fight for topics that are not directly related to our survival. Our current administration should relax their hold a little and engage the people more. But that is because we, as a nation, is stable. Do you think we can have these discussions if our primal instinct for survival is engaged? Who cares about the arts and homosexuals, if the nation is in poverty and cannot even feed ourselves?

Even if you do not agree with his decisions or directions, he is critically ill, and may not make it. Can’t people just put the negativity aside and at least hope that he goes in peace and without pain? Don’t these people have even an ounce of empathy in them? Think of his family! How would you feel, if someone cursed your father and hope that he would just die? Seriously, people, seriously.

So many Singaporeans are like frogs in a well looking up and thinking that is all there is to the sky. We all need to stop looking inwards, and start actually seeing what we have already achieved, and how we can continue to move forward. The only way Singapore can advance, is if the entire nation is working towards their own personal betterment.

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1 Step Forward, 10 Steps Back

So once again, Singaporeans discuss homosexuality. However, this time round, it’s not a discussion about repealing Section 377A (which I still maintain is archaic and should be abolished), but about our very own Health Promotion Board posting a FAQ on sexuality, and touched specifically on issues / topics surrounding homosexuality.

Screenshot from HPB:

hpbscreenshot

 

Other than an obvious filter for gays/bisexuals (where are the lesbians in this FAQ?), I was rather glad to see this type of information being available online with a neutral stand. Taking a sample question on “How and when will I know if I’m gay or bisexual?” The answer that was provided is neutral and provides simple & good information. 

hpbscreenshot2

 

So we can now all look to the sky with tears running down our faces, thinking how much of a progress this is for our nation.

BUT OF COURSE, WHO AM I KIDDING?

A Minister of Parliament has to feel ‘disappointed’

A magic-wielding pastor is shocked and deeply upset

Online petitions to take down the FAQ

Online petition to restore the FAQ

And more discussions online as usual, since this is the internet.

At the end of the day, there really isn’t anything different whether you are homosexual or heterosexual. I don’t even care if you are into bestiality if that’s what floats your boat. (I do judge pedophiles very much)

In a way, I’m glad we are having this type of conversations or discussions, or even moving one step forward at all.

Personally, I see Singaporeans as rebelling teenagers to their archaic parent / government. Some teenagers rebel and fight because they can, and for no particular reason. Most teenagers fight back because they finally see that things are not the way their parents say they are, and they are refusing to just swallow everything that their parents say without questioning. They are finally coming into their own skin and very eager to cultivate their own personality and be themselves for the first time. Those who succeed at changing their parents go on to become strong men and women; those who fail simply slide back into their personal oblivion. Most of us, however, find a middle road and pick the battles that actually matter to us, and let some things go. I think we will get to see who we truly become in the next couple of decades. It took us 50 years to get to this stage, I do not expect us to grow up as a nation in one or two elections. I just hope to see progress before I leave this world.

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Politics is ugly

Polling day is just round the corner and social media is ablaze with links, tweets, posts, notes and all sorts of activities. Whereas there are a certain number of supporters for the incumbency, the voices for the opposition has risen well above those.

PAP has done a great job over the past 40 over years. We have some great policies and programs that are comparable, if not better than most countries. We have safe streets and rudimentary racial tolerance. I don’t think anyone is discounting that. On the contrary, I believe everyone online acknowledges that we have made amazing progress over the years. I agree wholeheartedly that we would not have been able to achieve what we have achieved without such a parental type of government. But I believe things are changing. The world is changing and our government has to change with the times too. Our government is like a grouchy old grandmother, always using the fact that we would not be what we are without them as justification that we should always do as they say. And when we propose change, or question their actions, they whine that we are ungrateful brutes, and after all that they have done for us, this is how we repay them? When we show them new ideas, they shout burn the witch at the stakes! However, the sickening truth is that all these achievements have not been accomplished by the current batch of ministers, yet the arrogance that they portray disgusts me to the bone.

I am also appalled at the blatant threats and scare tactics that they deploy every time they are questioned about their actions. Are they really as naïve to think that if we have free speech, Singapore will turn into a riot? If they really do believe that, then I think they have failed in their attempts at building racial harmony (reason I said tolerance earlier). If we are all truly harmonious, there is no taking away that mutual respect for each other. If we are truly One Singapore, there is no need to constantly single out different races and making a point that we ‘try to accommodate all’.

I am also fed-up about their treating us like rabbits. Throwing upgrading carrots may have worked in previous elections, but I’m not sure it will be all that effective now. Upgrading has only made the flats more expensive, and more unaffordable for citizens. This is only beneficial to those who have more than one house, because remember, even if we sell our flats at a great price, we need to spend just as much to purchase a new resale flat. Higher standard of living thereafter? Maybe not.

Want to know why we are not making more babies? Maybe a closer look at why our inflation rate is higher than the salary increase. Need to spend more money on basic necessities, such as paying for the HDB loan, means less money to support a larger family.

I always give this example to those who do not believe that PAP just simply does not care about their people.

My grandfather passed away during the rally weeks in the last election 6 years ago. He has lived most of his life in Potong Pasir, and that was where we had the wake. During the day, at every couple of hours, rally trucks would pass by, alternating between PAP and then-SDA Chiam See Tong. We were extremely surprised when Mr Chiam turned up at the wake with only his wife and one other party member, paid his respects to my grandfather, and sat with the family to chit chat for almost 45 mins. During this time, his party member came over to my white gold collection point and contributed a sum on behalf. I was already grateful and appreciative of the gesture, regardless the amount. The real shocker was when Mr Chiam himself came over, took money out of his wallet and gave me the money. I was so touched that I was almost at a loss for words.

And then I waited. The PAP representative has always been extolling his care for the people in Potong Pasir, so I waited. And waited. Finally, many hours later, a PAP party member came by, with cash, saying that he ‘represents Mr Seetoh Yih Pin’. He just made sure I wrote the name down, and left. Is that genuine care and concern for the people? I don’t think so. Similarly, I doubt he was even sent by the rep.

The one thing I find the most hilarious, is that it was the rally period. If you were trying to win, shouldn’t you at least pretend to care more? It still makes me wonder if they really know what the people want. It’s not the abalone porridge nor the never-ending upgrading, it’s the very simple fact that what they do for us, is from their heart.

I really do not think that opposition voices are necessarily anti-PAP. I believe they just want to see some change, less complacency, more accountability and real care. If voting for the opposition is the only way to do it, so be it.

I think it’s very telling that civil servants are afraid to vote for the opposition, for fear of prosecution. I also think it’s ridiculous that civil servants are afraid to say anything about the elections, for fear of prosecution.

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