A letter to TOC from Ivan Thomasz:
Some people say it is cruel to criticize Tin Pei Ling with vulgar words. Be that as it may, regardless of the manner or style of criticism (whether it be tasteful satire or distasteful vulgar condemnation), so far, TPL has done much by her own vacuous words and trivial actions to justify such criticisms.
We should all practice loving-kindness towards everyone, including those that we may perceive to be our enemies. Granted some of the remarks thrown at Tin Pei Ling may be vulgar or distasteful, and unwarranted, to say the least.
But once you become a public figure like Tin Pei Ling and Nicole Seah, you have to accept that people will judge and make comments about you according to your speech, actions and not just your appearance, and you can expect some of these criticisms to be framed not only in civil but also uncivil speech.
What is more, someone who intends to stand for such critical public office as that of member of parliament, is supposed to have the maturity, experience, intellectual as well as emotional intelligence not only to handle these criticisms sensibly and intelligently, but most of all, to handle all the more grave responsibilities that come with being an elected representative of the people of this country.
Thus, in my opinion, and that of many others, Tin Pei Ling is gravely lacking all these qualities I have just mentioned.
So, regardless of the manner of criticism (whether it be tasteful satire or outright vulgar condemnation), based on the evidence that TPL herself presented to the public through her own speech and actions, in my opnion, such criticism is valid for the reasons given above.
And also, to be a respected member of parliament, you cannot have or expect to have someone like Goh Chok Tong, standing behind you all the time, ever ready to protect you from the cruel slings and arrows of public opinion, like an over-protective mother hen. If TPL can’t even stand with confidence as a person in her own right, how can we the electorate even be expected to respect her and have confidence in her abilities to stand as an MP in her own right? That is the whole point of the opposition to her presence in parliament.
So, while I can understand why GCT may want to protect TPL from the brutal verbal attacks that people have directed at her (after all paternalism comes very naturally to the cadre of the PAP), if TPL wants to be respected as an elected MP, she has to prove to the public beyond all doubt (regardless of the manner we criticise her) that she really deserves to be in parliament. To date, by her own vacuous words and trivial actions she has failed to convince the opposition otherwise and if she continues to fail in this regard, I and many others see no other recourse for her than to resign her office.