Aug 062017

Koh Jee Leong with his parents

Koh Jee Leong is a ‘one man crusade’ in Singapore.  He is suported by his family and friends.   Koh Jee caused himself to go viral when he wore a tank top to the gym that read, “Gay But Not Yet Equal.”  Truth and justice came from SAFRA Mount Faber EnergyOne Gym that stated his tank top did not break any rules.  Well done, gym staff!

Let’s Talk

Koh Jee is a walking advertisement.  He is willing to talk to his fellow country persons even if they oppose his stance.  Dialogue is so important.  Perhaps, for the first time – a native of Singapore is meeting and speaking openly to a gay person.  Koh Jee in an interview with “Gay Star News” spoke about his interaction with straight and older residents of Singapore.

He learned that in the 1960s, people were more tolerant. (I, (paula) am suggesting that the media and right wing Evangelicalism is to blame for today’s homophobia).  He recorded a writer straight female who spoke of that era when boys held hands in the school cafeteria and two female teachers who came to a convent school together.  They also adopted a child.  No intervention from the Catholic convent school authorities.

Singapore Criminalizes Homosexuality

Paula again commenting.   “I tmight be said that the citizens of Singapore are like ostriches hiding their heads in the earth.  They are law-abiding and homosexuality is a crime. It is a subject that is taboo.  And it raises doubts and even feelings that the law is unjust, but the law is the law!. I have visited Singapore about four times and voices are low.  There is a law against chewing gum!   Crime is almost non-existent.  There is no litter anywhere.  There is a pride and calmness presented in people I have obseved. (paula).

My thoughts seem to be borne out in Koh Jee’s discussions with his friends.  The society does not like to engage in conflict.  ‘The tank top not only states one’s sexuality, criminalized under section 377A, but also asks for the law to be changed. That carries the double charge of not only going against the Asian reluctance to talk about such matters in public, but also going against the law.  Koh Jee states that it took years to accept himself.

Pink Dot

On his journeys and wearing his tank top, Koh Jee met a young girl who quietly told him, “I am one of you.”   Koh Jee noticed that she did not say, “lesbian or part of the LGBTI community.”  She did admit to going to two Pink Dot Pride Parades.   She was obviously in “the closet.”

2016 Pink Dot Parade.

Pink Dot Pride Parade

Organisers have estimated that over 28,000 LGBT and allies from Singapore and beyond attended this year’s rally, which exceeded the capacity of Hong Lim park. The event began in 2009 with an attendance of 2,500.

This year, organisers replaced its traditional light-up of pink torches—to form a “pink dot” at the park—with the raising of pink placards at the culmination of the event and making a stand for the Freedom to Love.

Many Christian Churches have asked Muslims to join them in wearing “white” on Pink Dot Day.

My Personal Response

On Gay Star News, I posted the following:

Wow! Great man. I will blog this on my site in English, Chinese and languages of local surrounding countries. This shirt should also be worn in Australia and other countries. In March 2016, the World Psychiatric Association, with a membership of approx 250,000 psychiatrists , and representing 181 countries, wrote to the U.N and world leaders. They stated that homosexuality CANNOT be reversed and therefore is NOT a choice. Religions must embrace science; they cannot refer to scriptures condeming homosexuality that are over 3,500 years old. At the time of writing, these men lived in tents or caves and struck flints together to make fire. In their non-scientific minds, they could not conceive that humans would one day fly like the birds, have open heart surgery and chemotherapy to aid in the treatment of cancer. In fact, cancer and other diseases were unknown.

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