14 July 2003

PLU meeting

I gatecrashed a minor event last Thursday and kept it from you people =D. Those who've been reading the papers or TIME magazine would vaguely remember something about PM Goh saying that gay people won't be forced to leave their civil service jobs from now on. In fact, he sounded very liberal and accomodating towards "people who are different", and urged for tolerance of diversity. This is a very major about-face in policy and attitude - however semi-official. Short of forcing all private companies here to follow the non-discriminatory policy, or repealing the anti-gay laws, this is the strongest and most symbolic move the Prime Minister can make.

Now, back to the minor event I gatecrashed. Since my spectacle frames literally fell apart late Thursday afternoon, I rushed down to Plaza Sing to get it fixed, and there was just enough time to crash into a meeting of the Signel list. The agenda? Those people want to re-register PLU, the gay society that was refused registration 5 years ago.

Evidently, the media hype got into their heads. Instead of appreciating the PM's actions, they derided him, and cast aspersions on his motivations. Instead of being content, they want to push for much more "outness and proudness" and "in-your-faceness", to force the issue NOW, and alienate a population that might otherwise tolerate their existence. Their current attempt to re-register PLU will fail. And they're HAPPY to see it fail, because it just re-confirms that "the government is not sincere with its comments".

Failure to understand the field, of what the game is, and what the stakes are for different players... will always produce matyrs who are willing to sacrifice chances for some qualified success, just to make a symbolic point.

The organisers in Thursday's meeting made Chee Soon Juan look like a dignified and accomodating statesman. Chilling, isn't it?

No comments: