My proposed rules and regulations for protest rallies

Given the fiasco that happened on 27 Sep 14 at Hong Lim Speakers Corner, a site specially designated for free speech and public protest, ‘the protesters’ overall conduct was so egregiously bad that a few would think the public censure that followed was overdone’, I quote the ST editorial today, new rules and regulations must be introduced. I may further add, protesters must behave better, behave decently, not to shout, not to disturb the peace, not to look like thugs and gangsters, not to….I can go on and on. Basically, protesters in a public protest must conform to some expectations of decency by the decent and nice people.

Given these as the back drop and the expectations, I would like to offer some suggestions as to how a public protest rally should be like and how the protesters should behave. The authority may be pleased to take liberty to borrow my suggestions for future rallies in Hong Lim Park.

Not in any order of merit or importance, I will just rattle it off the hip, no need to think too much. Like the American cowboys, just shoot first and think later. It is easier that way.

Ok, first thing to do, protesters must bring along a decibel meter to measure the din they are making. What for? They must not be insensitive to the other park users, like special needs children, like babies in the prams, like senior citizens playing chess or having a snooze. Let the authority come out with the exact decibel they can make and the type of loudspeakers that are allowed henceforth.

The protesters must also bring along measuring tapes to mark the distance they should keep away from the other park users, and pay special attention to special needs children. These children like the Park very much for its special ambience and the heat. For this group, the distance must be double than the normal for other normal children.

Whatever the protesters do, they must not appear to be heckling anyone in the park, especially special needs children that happened to be there. Just because the Park has been specially approved by Parliament for protesting and demonstration, it does not mean that they can anyhow behave like protesters do. For this matter, it is good that they bring along their own video recorder to record the event in case there is a dispute as to them getting too close to the special needs children, ‘heckling’ them or disrupting their activities. This is for the own good of the protesters as people who were not at the scene may have the wrong impression and anyhow accused them of misconduct later.

Protesters are allowed only to march in rows of twos, not too many as it would look very rowdy. Look at how nice school children walked in schools?  If they could hold hands, that would be nice. This is the standard that the protesters should try to emulate. And yes, wear clean and nice clothing to look smart and not like hooligans and gangsters. Wear a badge if possible to read ‘I am a protester’ so that people can identify who you really are.

And when the protesters are protesting, please, put on a smile on your face. Don’t look so grumpy, so fierce, like gangsters. The authorities or public may think you are thugs and, yes, gangsters. Now that is really bad publicity and bad image if photographs or videos of them were to be flashed in the media.

And when the police or authority demands for their identification, please do not argue or be rude. Be polite, just hand over your identification papers and all will be fine. And don’t demand from the police or authority for their identification papers. That is outright rudeness. In this exceptional city, anyone who come to you and tell you they are the police or the authority, they must be real. No cheats or thugs would dare to impersonate the police or authority. So there is no need to go through that hassling.

And another thing, when the protesters go marching around the Park, please show some courtesy and friendliness and stop to shake hands with whoever is present for goodwill. Oh, an exception, perhaps this should be avoided when approaching special needs children as they may be too sensitive and can get frightened by the protesters. Be extra sensitive and mindful of the people there and shout only when you are at a safe distance from them.

If protesters are to follow the above suggestions, I think everything will be alright even if there are other events in the Park. And how can I miss this, please double confirm with the authorities your designated area so that you do not encroach into other people’s areas. In the past this was not required, but after the 27 Sep pathetic incident, this is necessary. All future applications will have designated areas allocated to them in advance, not last minute to avoid a clash or conflict by encroachment.

Basket, why I spent so much time, thinking so hard, for all these suggestions and not getting paid a single cent for them?

Kopi Level - Yellow


Anonymous said...

Laughter is the best medicine


U make my fucking day.... more, it's a holeday


Like the day old fart claimed to b god

Virgo49 said...

Going for BIBLE STUDY on a Sunday!

Mr RB??

Must behaved going to Church.

Slap on the Right, give your Left!

Chua Chin Leng aka redbean said...

We are all believers of the biggest Church in the island, bigger than CHC, New Creation and all the churches combined.

Anonymous said...

Just kike to add one important point to Rb's list of protocol.

Any protester should give any PIP(POLITICAL IMPORTANT PERSON) A SALUTATION AND OR A BEAR HUG, TO SHOW THAT HE/SHE IS IMPORTANT, at least at the Material Time. But, if their personal protection officers show their fangs, it is safer to keep your distance. The PIPs maybe caring and lovable, their protectors may not be.

Anonymous said...

Another suggestion. Take selfies with the PIPs to endear to him or her.

Anonymous said...

What part of "Hong Lim Park Speakers' Corner" don't you understand?
Does it sound like a place to hold a children's concert?

Anonymous said...

Did they inform the parents that there was a protest and there could be risk to their children?

Anonymous said...

Not sure about that. But according to HHH, they insisted that she cancel her protest rally or they would bring forward their event to clash with the protest time.

Anonymous said...

There were two chants that could be heard:
"Return our CPF" by Roy
"We love Our CPF" by PAPigs

But only Roy's chants are considered "heckling" and upsetting to the children.
How will the children know the difference?

Anonymous said...

Why didn't PAP's Million dollar Minister act as a leader?
Stand up on stage with a microphone and tell everybody to please be quiet and stop scaring the children.

Anonymous said...

It was all sound and peaceful to me.
Some made a mountain out of molehill which sone others created a storm in a teacup.

Anyone the wiser?


Anonymous said...

Finally patriot reappears.

b said...

The best rule for protest is to sit behind a computer, drinking champagne and eating chocolate cake. Why stand under the blazing hot sun risking a stroke?

Kaffein said...

Actually the solution is simple - leave HLP to be a political place for protest, speeches, etc. That means all other social gatherings should keep away from HLP.

Solved. No need million dollars to think about solution.