12 November 2007

The Open Letter To The Prime Minister

I got to Catherine Lim's open letter to the Prime Minister via mrbrown's blog entry on the same topic. It struck a very deep chord with me and as I read on, I realised why. It was the very same sentiment when I wrote The Red Dot Awakens back in July 2006, at a time when our dear mrbrown got canned from Today Newspaper for an article that got rebuked by the Ministry for Communications, Information and the Arts.

The open letter may be long but I urge everyone to spend a little time to read it. The abject fear that I spoke of was covered in the later section of the letter and was put across much more clearly by Ms Lim:

"...the ‘out-of-bounds markers’. These are rules which stipulate what Singaporeans can and cannot say should they choose to criticise the government. The effectiveness of the markers is derived from their being deliberately left undefined and unexplained, for two obvious reasons. Firstly, it allows the government to have its own interpretation of each case as it arises, to suit its purpose. Secondly, since no one knows when or whether the markers are being overstepped, everyone plays safe by practising self-censorship, which can be a more effective curb than direct censorship."

To the Gahmen, I say it was a move well played as even I couldn't shake off the fear if you recall all the  please-don't-butter-my-ass disclaimers at the bottom of those entries that touched on the Gahmen.
Anyway, I am glad that people out there share my sentiment and especially someone like Ms Lim, whose words speak louder than most of us. We speak up for the good of the Gahmen and the country. All we want for our Gahmen and our country is for them to be better. Otherwise, we would have just pack our bags and give up.

For what's it's worth, I do hope that the Gahmen would take off their blinders and for once, take a good look around. Going straight forward all the time may not necessarily yield the best path.

Image Credit:
- Voxeros

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