pro patria mori

November 11, 2005

Reading Singaporean blogs recently I feel strangely relieved that not everyone in Singapore is mindless and blind. So many issues: homosexuality, death penalty, drugs, casinoes.

But the strange thing is: why do Singaporeans actually care? 20 years I’ve lived here, and experience has taught me that if you care too much for Singapore it will break your heart and destroy you. Look at Chee Soon Juan: I don’t necessarily think that he’s the most emotionally sensitive or politically astute of people, but I do not think that he is a villain out to destroy the great, common good that is the PAP, less still do I think that he deserves his fate as a social and political pariah. Look at Kuo Pao Kun: he loved Singapore so much, and was still thrown into jail for being a commie. Look at Alex Au, who fights so hard to be Singaporean and gay and to actually have rights, and how he has been stifled of a voice and a say. Look anywhere. This place is not one of happy, vibrant people who will grow up to be individually fulfilled and like what they do. This place is full of people who will grow up to be pawns in an economic chess-game, where the rich get richer and the powerful get, well, more powerful.

So this is my message again: forget about Singapore. If you’re intelligent enough to realise that this place as it is now is not by any measure a bed of roses (unless of course it’s a bed of manure without the roses) then you’re probably intelligent enough not to bother living here.

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