13 July 2006

Imperial Overreach

Being the last in the triptych of comments on Char, Wong Kan Seng, and the NCCS

Imperial Overreach

Occurs when organisational forces attempt to push the limits of their power from a stable configuration.

Typically through an extreme move or a hardline statement, going above and beyond established and accepted principles.

While achieving momentary shock, the move or statement are inconsistent with existing principles, hence untenable, unsustainable, and plain illogical.

Overreach occurs when the population is insufficiently shocked to accept the new proposed standards, or when the organisation is unprepared to back up its new stance and backpedals to the old status quo.

I write this in the light of the police dropping the investigation against Char.

The acquital without formal charges proves overreach - not just by Wong Kan Seng and the police, but by the NCCS and the fringe fundamentalists in Singapore. We witness the breaching of several commonsensical rules:

7. The police should never be used as a tool of frivolous investigation. DPM Wong's asinine announcement that the police will investigate all and any complaints against anti-religious bloggers breaches this rule.

8. There must either be clear guidelines over what on earth is truly offensive to Christians, or investigations should never be held unless there arise pictures that actually incite a supermajority of Christians into possible violence.

8a. Will the NCCS have the guts to seize upon the momentum it has built over the past 5 years, and mutate into the National Circle-jerk of Christian Muftis? Will any Protestant really allow such a body to make essentially pronouncements on church doctrine?

8b. Liberal Christians who have either quit the established churches in light of the recent shift to fundamentalism in the churches during the past 10 years, or have remained silent but not exactly happy campers, will never allow the fundamentalists to make a grab in defining religious doctrine and matters of "sedition" and "blasphemy". Disengaged as they are from formal church politics, the possibility of a backlash by liberal Christians has prevented the mufti-wannabes of the NCCS from speaking out on the Char issue.

8c. Objectively speaking, there was never any majority of Christians wildly offended by Char's pictures. Speaking as a Christian, I find those pictures rather funny, somewhat infantile, but never that insulting. And some of them had nothing to do with Christianity at all.

9. The NCCS should remember what the censorship board and the MDA said when the mufti-wannabes tried to send a secret letter to the ministry to ban the Da Vinci Code movie. The reply, if I recall, was "Fuck off". Grown adults, including Christians, are able to differentiate between fact and fiction. Why a secret letter? I do suppose there was a sizeable fraction of Christians who would not have been comfortable with the idea of the NCCS trying to ban a movie in their names.

9a. What has always been allowed cannot be disallowed. It's bad precedent, for example, to ban any and all depictions of Jesus Christ now, because we HAVE allowed the Da Vinci Code to be screened.

We have allowed Bruce Almighty to be screened.

There was no police investigation or sedition charges thrown at any Singaporean who has made "Father, Son and Holy Goh" jokes since 1992.

Al Franken's Lies: And the lying liars who tell them continues to be sold openly in Singapore's bookshops despite its depiction of a certain Supply-side Jesus.

T-shirts saying "God, save me from your followers!" are still widely available at any good pasar malam or streetwear store.

10. Note to the ever-opportunistic National Circle-jerk of Christian (i.e. Protestant, with self-appointed representatives from Anglicans, Methodists, Presbyterians, and Rev Kong Hee's church) Muftis: My Jesus forgives your Jesus.

1 comment:

~[z][x]~ said...

Well done! Very well argued akikonomu!! I chanced upon your blog and I really cannot agree more with this post of yours. :)