By Lee Song Kwang, with additional reporting by Ravi Philemon
Mr George Yeo, Minister for Foreign Affairs, wrote in his personal blog recently that he was concerned for Jack Neo’s wife (Rallying around Jack Neo and his family). Was not Mr Yeo concerned for the young persons Jack had the affair with as well? After all, they were all young and impressionable. Is it right for the minister - any minister for that matter - to ask the people to rally around a person who has abused his privileged position of trust as a husband, father; but most of all as a the director of his company J Team?
The youngest person he had tried to seduce, Maelle Meurzec, was barely 16 years of age when Jack tried to woo her to bed with promises of making her a star in the film-world. I wonder how many aspiring starlets could spurn away such advances by an established filmmaker.
In fact, what he subjected Maelle to was pure sexual harassment. It is good that she did not succumb to it, but I wonder how many he bedded with this type of callous behaviour.
When Jack Neo’s wife fainted at the press conference recently, she had an entire network of family, friends and well-wishers to support her. I wonder if the victims of Jack’s trysts will ever get such kind of support from their family and friends. It is much easier to paint them as attention-seekers and the ones at fault.
The Straits Times sought my opinion today with regards to Jack Neo’s scandal. What struck me hard during this interview was when the interviewer mentioned that a Member of Parliament had actually said that this is (having an affair) something unavoidable for successful man - I could not believe what I was hearing.
I hurried back to do a quick Google search and, true enough, Mr Lim Biow Chuan, Member of Parliament for Marine Parade GRC, had said it. I had missed it because I don’t read the Chinese newspapers.
The Google translation of Mr Lim’s remarks in the Chinese newspaper reads:
"Over the years, to me, Jack Neo is a good son, father and also a good husband. Since he is remorseful over this incident, he should be forgiven. Actually, a man who has good career development would find such scenarios unavoidable."
Did I read it right? Is the MP actually saying that it is fine to sexually harass if you are successful? Why were Mr Yeo and Mr Lim so quick to jump to the defence of Jack? Is it because Jack himself is an elite in his own field much like the Minister and the MP?
The Foreign Minister and the MP need to say it straight that they are not getting into bed with Jack Neo on this.
Headline photo courtsey of Ben Soon author of the Singaporean Says blog