If I was to go by the comments left behind by many Singaporeans with regards to the 16 yr old teenager who was arrested for practicing his freedom of speech on a recent yahoo Article.
I would honestly have to say no.
Singaporeans are a testament to what 50 years of autocratic rule and the restriction of humans rights and civil liberties have done. They are afraid of freedom because freedom comes with a cost, responsibility.
When you have lived in such an environment where you don’t even have to be responsible for your thoughts, faced with ideals that challenge your perception and slave mentality, you will fight to keep yourself chained to the machine, it’s the only thing that is real, that and the fear.
Like with these commentators;
“The terrorism in Paris and Sydney is the stark stabbing example of Western brand of democracy/human rights. They condone radical preaching in their backyard and stood helpless (binded to their ethos of democracy/human rights) even when tragedies strike on the expense of their native citizens. America’s irrepressible urge to “spread” democracy in Middle East rendered nothing but a wretched mess of radicalism – hell on Earth.
It is so abhorrent to know that Kirsten is a Singaporean. I hope it has now become past tense”
I assume they are talking about Charlie Hebdo, in which case they certainly do not follow current affairs, as Charlie Hebdo brought to light some very fundamental issues with how religion is given a free pass. A discussion is happening, ideas are being put forward and shared, spawning the Paris March.
“Freedom of speech dose not mean to hurt other feeling, I have seen Amos Yee few videos but in all he like to talk offensive. Yes you can talk but first prove your self that you are right.cheap publicity is very much easy then doing really work on floor. You should appropriate good people work who build nation but if you don’t want to appropriate then no one having given right to depreciate. Better just seat inside room do your study because what services you are enjoying now to upload videos on youtube need good Internet speed which 70% of Asian countries not enjoying so better shut your mouth and do some good work.“
Freedom of speech does not take need to take your emotions into consideration, so what you’re offended? it doesn’t give you special rights, saying you’re offended is just a whine, it has no reason to be respected as a phrase.
“France has freedom of speech and expression. Look what happened to those cartoonists. France as a nation has a long history and her people are open to such freedom without fear. The killers may be from the religion which those cartoonists were making fun of but they were naturalised citizens. Singapore is a young nation where race, religion and culture are still very sensitive. We have gone through many racial problems in the past but the laws put up, maybe draconian to many, have prevented reoccurrences of such incidents. Just look at our neighbour. Their laws are more draconian esp when it touches race and religion , well, mainly for one race and religion only. We have to trade in some of our freedom to live in harmony and most importantly, safely. Here we can walk safely in most parts of Singapore even in the dark. I f France has some restrictions on such freedom, those cartoonists will still be alive and drawing. However this will not to be and you will see more of such problems in future. One day, it will not be safe to walk the streets in these western free countries.“
And I assume this person has been drinking the Calvin Cheng koolaid, where he quotes the part about the amazing safety in Singapore as though crime and violence doesn’t ever break out and how he condones submitting to terror for the sake of safety.
If you read through them you will notice a common narrative, fear.
I cannot emphasize enough, 50 years of autocratic rule and the restriction of human rights and civil liberties have conditioned people into a state of constant fear.
Instead of looking for enlightenment and understanding by asking critical questions and describing radical ideas, many choose to remain silent and live in fear of retaliation and it’s just so sad.
I mentioned in my article “Freedom of Speech is Freedom to be Human” that it is the government’s duty to protect our freedoms and civil liberties from those who wish to revoke and restrict them.
So if you ask me, are Singaporeans ready for their basic human freedoms and civil liberties to be returned to them?
I would have to say no but then again, I don’t care to coddle the ignorant masses who are keeping down the progressive few.
The progressives need to take a stand and lead by example.
We need to show them how Democracy and Liberalism must go hand in hand.
We need to show them that theres more to life than just survivalism.
If more Singaporeans care about the pursuit of happiness maybe we wouldn’t need to spend so much money to teach people how to smile via useless propaganda… I mean campaigns.
We need to build a nation where peace and harmony is achieved through respect, love and understanding not ignorance, fear and apathy.
“People learn to love their chains” – Danerys Targaryen
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