Thursday, April 14, 2016

In totalitarian Singapore, a lone peaceful protestor is arrested

Ladies and Gentlemen,

Singapore is no better, when it comes to human rights than any of the "Stans" in the world, Uzbekistan, Tajikistan, Kirgizstan or even the middle eastern Emirates or North Korea. And in these "Stans" the only ones with any normal life are the rulers. The rest live in fear.

Yesterday in Singapore they arrested a lone peaceful protestor causing no harm to anyone. He was seen quietly holding some anti government and anti judiciary posters. In Singapore to do this is a criminal offense. They don't want anyone criticizing their rulers.

Singapore's state controlled newspaper Straits Times (all news media is state controlled) of today carries a report "Istana Park Protestor in court over 2 charges". The culprit, Yan Jun, a 40 year old Singaporean "had displayed 2 placards including one in Chinese which read "Protest against High Court of Singapore for miscarriage of justice". He protested outside Istana Park, or the Palace of Lee Kuan Yew's son, Singapore's ruler on March 2nd and another occasion near the island's Parliament. See the newspaper report here

For just peacefully protesting, the government prosecutor has claimed Yan Jun is insane and therefore should be detained at the island's mental asylum.

The authority to arrest this peaceful protestor comes from the Public Order Act of 2009. Under this law, section 2 (a) states that even a single person standing alone peacefully is an "assembly". This statement defies logic, as many things do in that island, but apparently their rulers there don't seem to care how stupid they look!

Under Section 7 of this legislation, anyone intending to protest has to obtain a permit from the island's Police commissioner. But what is not mentioned in this law is that the Police Commissioner has never granted any permit to anyone wanting to protest against the government in the entire history of the island!

This legislation just like a great many others in the island is just another piece of waste paper. It makes no sense because the law requires you to obtain a permit while if you did, you will never get one!

Surprisingly, this demand that anyone who protests against the government has to have his head examined is a routine procedure.

It assumes that anyone who has the audacity to protest against their Singaporean rulers has to be insane (they have labelled the mental disease "persecutory delusional disorder"), otherwise why would anyone do such a thing! It doesn't occur to them at all that all over the world the right to protest is an inalienable right and rather than being insane, it is the most noble of human endeavors.

When Yan objected to being sent to the mental asylum, a natural reaction from anyone in his shoes, the Singaporean prosecutor justified his demand by observing that, because he objects being sent to the mad-house, it proves that he is indeed crazy because " The way Yan talked about his defense suggested there might be something preventing him from accepting and processing information critical to his understanding of the nature and consequences of his action, said the DPP" a medical judgement despite the fact that he has no medical qualification at all!

The reader would note that this sort of thing is painfully reminiscent of Soviet Union under Stalin where every single political opponent was invariably labelled "insane" and sent off the Siberian Gulag.

Naturally the Singaporean judge whose primary responsibilities includes silencing any criticism against the island's rulers roundly agreed that Yan Jun has to be mad and promptly sent him packing to the mental asylum where he is to remain for 2 weeks.

After that he will be jailed or fined. That much is certain. Singapore is one country where you can predict the outcome in such cases before you even step into the courtroom. You were guilty the moment you were arrested. His picture would be prominently displayed in these state controlled newspapers to warn anyone else of the dangers of criticizing the multi billionaire rulers who are above the law and can do anything they want.

Singapore trials such as this are like Alice in Wonderland. Remember the trial of the rabbit who stole the tart. The Queen Judge wanted to deliver the verdict even before they heard any evidence!

As a result of these laws that criminalize any dissent, the entire island of Singapore, or those still remaining there have all been made to realize that they have no means to question authority. This one incident of protest is an extreme rarity in that totalitarian island and there is unlikely to be any more of these for a long time. I understand in North Korea too no one dares to protest.

In the last elections, despite laws like these, in an island where the rulers are openly corrupt in paying themselves millions of dollars as salaries, where there are no fundamental human rights, no rule of law and no free press, 70% of the island voted for this regime. This is a clear signal that the Singaporeans presently living in the island actually prefer to live under a Fascist government where they obediently accept what their government tells them to do.

Of course not all Singaporeans were like this. There were, normal thinking human beings, like anywhere else, but most of them have left the island for settlement abroad for obvious reasons.

The brain drain of ordinary educated Singaporeans to the West is one of greatest in the world.

For an already tiny island with a tiny Singaporean population, this is almost ethnic cleansing on a massive scale, with Singaporeans leaving and the tiny island's population completely transformed into one made up entirely of recent immigrants.

Today Singapore has already lost its identity and is in fact another Communist Chinese city as the foreign population has exceeded that of the local population. This problem is compounded in this tiny island by having the lowest birth rate in the world and the fastest aging population.

Although the government is aware that the dislike that people have to this administration is due greatly to the lack of democracy, except to make speeches urging the local population to remain and have more babies, it does nothing to advance democracy even one bit.

If this repression continues it would only result in the few remaining locals and the foreign population in the island being thoroughly fascist and totally supporting their rulers with only one opinion, that of the state. It is fast becoming another Nazi Germany or Mussolini's Italy where 99% of the people support their dictator.

An island like this is no good for individual thought or ideas. It is an island consumed in fear. Fear of Big Brother  and the need to conform and submit. It is a stagnant society like North Korea waiting for our Dear Leader. For competition in this modern world it lacks an essential quality. You cannot orchestrate innovation and change. It has to be spontaneous.

Gopalan Nair
Attorney at Law
A Singaporean in Exile
Fremont California USA
Tel: 510 491 8525


TY Tang said...

I totally agree with this!!

Daniel Kevlar said...

And they beg for more soldiers, more men to die for them if the debt collectors finally get tired of waiting.

Unfortunately, many of those men have either left or been locked up in mental asylums.