SG Racist bloggers: They keep going, and going, and…

Another Singaporean blogger makes the headline on The Straits Times today (via Mr Wang). Unlike other forms of media, blogging only serves to make one’s intent more identifiable, meaning you can “kenna” more easily than say if you were to say racist remarks in broad daylight. I only have two “food for thought” questions on this:

  1. How much is too much?
    Are racist jokes also considered illegal even though most people are honestly all guilty of it in their daily lives? Or does it require clear and present danger?
  2. Does obscurity = privacy?
    Was this recent blogger obscure or well-known in the blogosphere since that would impact how far his opinions would carry. If he was obscure, or even under a pseudo-name, an anonymous blogger isn’t guaranteed privacy. That’s something to think about since it nulls anonymity.

For a 17 year old, the charge is rather heavy as stipulated in the sedition act. On Saturday, Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong said that “It does not matter whether inflammatory racist remarks are made online or offline – it is still against the law to stir up distrust and enmity between the races. And the Government will act against anyone who threatens racial and religious harmony”. For the actual Straits Times article, see below:

Sept 17, 2005
Third person accused of racist comments on Net
By Chong Chee Kin

YET another blogger was hauled to court yesterday for posting allegedly racist remarks online – the third person charged under the Sedition Act this week.

Seventeen-year-old private school student Gan Huai Shi is accused of promoting ill will and hostility among different races through comments on his blog.

In two unrelated cases on Monday, Nicholas Lim Yew, 25, and Benjamin Koh Song Huat, 27, were charged with similar offences.

Gan faces seven charges under the Sedition Act for offences he was said to have committed between April 4 and July 16.

He allegedly made four inflammatory comments about Malays and Muslims on the Internet within days of starting his blog.

In one entry on April 4, he allegedly made it clear that he was ‘extremely racist’.

The next day, in two entries within four hours, he was said to have posted anti-Malay remarks. On April 6, he was allegedly at it again.

From May to July 16, he is accused of making racist comments once a month on his blog, spouting his hatred for the Malay community.

In one posting, he also allegedly wrote of his violent tendencies in an entry he described as having ‘explicit and candid content’. He allegedly wrote how much he wanted to ‘assassinate some important person with a sniper rifle’.

Gan, represented by lawyer Edmond Pereira, was released on bail of $15,000 and is due back in court next Tuesday. He could end up in jail for up to three years on each of the charges.

5 thoughts on “SG Racist bloggers: They keep going, and going, and…

  1. Illegal to make racist comments? This is ridiculous. Can you imagine what can happen? BTW, someone should tell the government that even when things are legal, it doesn’t make them right.

  2. While racism is unavoidable anywhere in the world, Singapore has been very successful in creating a melting pot of diversity. However, when lumps appear in the pot, it should be looked at.

    Inflammatory racist remarks go beyond the “Ah Neh, smile leh, I can’t see you in the dark.” jokes: It is a deliberate preaching of hate amongst our fellow men.

    And it should be dealt swiftly and decisively.

  3. It is almost an ultimatum declared by these ignorant bloggers; in name for greater viewership, and insensible traunt of their personal anger, they have overlooked the very close bond between the different racial groups in Singapore. I for one have live there for 16 years and I wake up everyday knowing I have a band of friends who are just Singaporeans. Just Singaporeans, and should I say 95% of all Singaporeans thinks of his neighbour as a Singaporean, not a Chinese, Malay or Indian, or a Buddhist, Muslim or Christian. We have came so far; those arrested are beyond racist, they are simply unnecessary and should ultimately be entirely removed from the society.

    I cry for the society I used to love.

  4. Singapore has a beautiful ethnic combination that when blends, it create a unique language called ‘singlish. Unlike India, China or Russia where you can hardly see any other races, differentiation still arise through dialect and class which disgust me most.

    My auntie is a chinese origins when my granddad adopted her. Her parents was killed during the japanese war and out of pity and humanity, my granddad took her in so as to save this innocent child from being a child prostitute. My granddad is a Malay. Is he a rodent then?

    God created every human being with a unique traits and personality even when they are from the same ethnic, religion, race or culture. It is through love, understanding and respect that enable us to cast our differentiation apart inorder to accept one another.

    So my fellow Singaporean, you are not a chinese, malay, indian or eurasians here. YOU ARE A SINGAPOREAN!

  5. It just seems that the problem not on lies on races and religion itself, people tend to go around insulting people of different sizes and looks yet threaten others through blogging. Something had to be done, orelse do every singaporean here have a chance of getting verbally abuse, blog abuse as well as threatened?

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