Wednesday, March 10, 2010

The procession of DOOM

I'm in the minority on the farm in being as bipedal as you human readers, and at the moment I can't help but feel that may be for the best. Legs, you see, are dangerous. So dangerous that when people try to use them, we need to put them in jail.

Consider, my friends, the frightening behaviour of Chee Siok Chin:
I’m serving my sentence this week. This time for attempted procession during our WB-IMF peaceful protest back in 2006.
Ye Fluffy Chickadees, not attempted PROCESSION!! I don't know about you, but I'm going to barricade the coop tonight, scratch myself a hole in the ground and hunker down with a blanket and some tins of feed. You never know what chaos might break out. Someone could be walking out there.

But you know, nobody starts out in life a hardened criminal processioner. Obviously something else must have been the precursor, the gateway drug. In Ms Chee's case this has included flyers. Thankfully my own wings are clipped, as befitting a farm animal, so I'm at no risk of starting down this nefarious path of DOOM.

Her blog tells us a bit about her previous experience in prison for giving out little bits of paper:
I spent a week in jail for “demonstrating opposition against the actions of the government” through distributing flyers. That pretty much rubbishes what Ms Chong Wan Yieng, Press Secretary to Minister for Law, says “engaging in robust criticism per se is not and has never been a crime or libellous in Singapore”.

Few people know what prison conditions are like in Singapore. Most have the impression that the door to the cell is made of bars; that you have a simple bed to sleep on; that you are allowed to go to a mass area to have your meals. Well, the reality is that each inmate is given a thin straw mat to sleep on. No pillow. Just a prickly blanket. Basic supplies such as toilet paper, soap, toothpaste and even water, are rationed.

Time passes very slowly in the small, stuffy, hard cell. You can’t help but keep waiting for nightfall so that another day in prison is behind you. But then my thoughts would turn to those who were incarcerated for months and years by the ISD. Not only were they detained without any charge or trial. They were not even told how long their detention would be. That must have been the most difficult aspect of their imprisonment. Hope is illusive and elusive when one does not how long one would spend time being locked up.

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