american version of freedom of expression
The ex chairman of Paramount Pictures was given an Oscar for her contribution to the film industry. In her acceptance speech she said that in America they honoured freedom of expression. People are encouraged to express their views and people need not have to agree. There can be disagreements. But that contributes to what America is today, innovative, creative, progressive and full of adventure and opportunities. America is the leading nation in practically all fields of human endeavours. We are talking about vibrancy. Can we be like America where people will come forward and express themselves freely without fear? But looking at how Singaporeans justify our special circumstances and be proud to say that this is what we should do with respect to freedom of expression, we can never be near to where America is today. We have to allow our people to feel free to express their views and ideas. Disagreements and contrary views are not necessarily anti govt or anti establishment. And we have all the laws to prevent excesses or defamation. I have seen an American putting on a mask of Bush and asking people to kick his arse on the street. Can we do that? Yes we can, as long as the mask is of Bush. Or to be safe, the mask of say some Kim Jong something. This is the freedom that American is unique and respected.