Fight your fight – but please keep your clothes on!

I support the online petition to repeal section 377A of the Penal Code. I also support the Parliamentary petition. It is good that at least one MP, albeit an NMP, would be taking up the issue in Parliament.

I think it is a shame that not one of the 82 PAP MPs or the 3 opposition MPs in Parliament have spoken up for the gay community. No doubt it is a political decision – to not risk alienating the majority “conservative vote” in Singapore.

Perhaps in a future article I will write about the question which this brings up – which is: Will our opposition parties behave any differently from the PAP if they ever became the government? This is an interesting issue to ponder on as we see how each party takes a backseat to the issue – never mind that it involves more than just gay rights, but also human rights, freedom of expression, and sexual rights as well. I’ll come to that perhaps another day.

Right now, I want to focus on the gay community and what it is doing to further its cause. Let me say outright here that I am not gay, neither am I homophobic. I detest homophobes.

Having said all that, let me also say that I do not wish for our gay members to be strident in their fight for their cause. By strident, I mean being “loud” about how they go about campaigning for gay rights.

Perhaps a picture will explain this better. The picture above is a picture from AsiaOne which accompanied their report titled: “Thousands march in Taipei for gay rights”.

It is not just in Taiwan but also in many other countries (Australia, for example) that we see parades and pictures of half naked men and women in what seems to be their underwear marching in public.

I think that is in bad taste – and worse, it portrays a wrong image of gay people. The gay friends I have and know would never march half naked or in their underwear in public. I have no idea why gay people in such parades do this.

It just puts off the majority of the people.

I think there should be some consideration for decorum – especially in public. Else, nudists would also want to have the right to be naked in public.

That is why I am quite impressed that the gay community in Singapore are taking their fight to Parliament and forcing the govt to hear them out. Whether the petition is approved for reading in Parliament itself is moot, really. It’s beside the point. What is more important to me is that the community is finding ways and means to get themselves heard – and making an impact. And to me, the fact that an NMP is willing to bring it up in Parliament is a victory on its own.

So, I salute Mr Siew Kum Hong.

While I support rights for gay people, I – and I suspect so do many of my fellow Singaporeans, including those who also support gay rights – would not want to see strident public displays of half nakedness.

I think that just makes the cause of the gay people that much weaker.

And that would be a shame.

Now, it is immensely interesting to me to see which politician would support the petition. I would especially hate those politicians who sit on the fence and play it safe.

Lets see who has the conviction to speak their minds about the gay issue this time.

Baey Yam Keng? Sylvia Lim? Chiam See Tong?

This will also partly answer the other question I posed: Will opposition parties behave differently than the PAP? And would they place more weight on issues of rights other than bread and butter ones?

Time to show hand.

We’re watching.

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One Response

  1. We’re watching indeed. Time to walk the talk.

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