4 Reasons why we must support the UNDERDOG

By Macy Goh

1.    To have a voice

WP’s chairman Sylvia Lim summed it up last night when she said “Hougang does not belong to WP, just as Singapore does not belong to the PAP”

Right now, the people’s voices are drowned out in the local papers. The Straits Times is essentially a mouthpiece of the ruling party. However with social media, the people’s voices are slowly but surely being transmitted underground. For a first world country to prevail, we will need to reclaim our voices in mainstream media as well as in parliament so that bread and butter issues that matter to all of us can be heard. We don’t want the 1% of elite to make decisions that will impact the 99% of normal citizens. 

2. To ensure justice is meted out fairly

If politics have taught us one thing, it shows that we cannot take justice for granted. We all assume we will be treated fairly and justly but that may not always be the case. If we don’t have a watchdog to ensure that people of all races, religions and viewpoints will be treated equally and justly, then we run the risk of having a justice system in Singapore that may be motivated by political agenda.

3.    To prevent selective prosecution of our citizens

In USA, citizens are innocent until proven guilty. Is that the case in Singapore? It seems that the ministries such as the MOH can flex their mighty muscles to make examples out of doctors, and find them guilty even when it is a clear case of selective prosecution. The papers that covered only MOH’s viewpoint of two aesthetic docs charged for performing certain aesthetic practices claim they were charged because they had continued certain aesthetic practices while others had stopped. But that point in itself is questionable, why did the doctors not have a chance to defend themselves in the press?

Here is a letter to all doctors sent by the Singapore medical council in 2008. It stated that ALL doctors have until 1st Nov 2008 to stop certain aesthetic practices. 

The two aesthetic doctors were charged in 2007. How can they be the last to stop the practices when they were already charged even before the guidelines came out, before this letter was sent and way before the deadline was up?

One theory is that these doctors were getting too popular. Perhaps some higher powers within MOH wanted to make examples out of these aesthetic doctors for their own agenda but can we allow the abuse of the justice system for these groups of powerful elite to further their personal vendettas this way?

 4.    To avoid the 99%– 1% conundrum

Right now we are moving towards a society where 1% of the elite not only control the wealth but the power in Singapore. Singapore shouldn’t turn into a country where connections allows one to be above the law while common, hardworking people in the 99% category do not have access to a fair and just judicial system because of their lower social or economic status. 

We should be a society who supports meritocracy while not neglecting the less fortunate so we can ensure a fairer distribution of wealth and resources. Political power should be earned by merit and not end up being akin to a VIP club, passed within a small group of privileged and connected members. We need to have checks and balances in place to ensure normal working class are treated fairly and equally. No more making scapegoats of people the elite view as a threat. Whether they are opposition members, bloggers airing controversial viewpoints or doctors practicing aesthetic medicine that could be threatening the businesses of more established old guards, they should be treated with the same fairness and equality. Don’t use the guise of justice to further personal vendettas.

Life is a battle and has always been. It is okay to fight but we must learn to fight fair. Giving underdogs a chance will even out the power imbalance pervading the many stratas of society.

The publication of this article was delayed due to the cooling off day policy.