According to Ms Chua, Chee's plight is all his own doing. He got himself bankrupted, jailed and arrested....of course, Chee has free will, if he sit around and do nothing like the rest of us, none of these things would have happened to him. So this is all his own fault - the result of his own actions.
"According to a medical website, one complication that might arise from this disorder is frequent imprisonment for unlawful behaviour" - Chua Mui Hoong
"Oh my, Aung San Suu Kyi, Gandhi, Nelson Mandela have all been jailed for breaking the law, they are all having antisocial personality" - Lucky Tan
In any other country, Chee would have been called a political activist and would be allowed to protest all he wants. In Singapore where the system is so wonderful, you have to be crazy to be a political activist when there are so many weekend sales around to keep you occupied. According to Ms Chua, Chee doesn't have many supporters. It could be that Singaporeans are just shy, whenever Chee turns up, there are all these people with cameras filming the people who come to support him. After that, you might get a free visit from the police or a greeting card to remind you of the behavior of good citizens. Just like this group of young people who joined Chee for the Freedom Walk...... if I were their parents, I will force them to stop participating in these activities and spend more time attending rock concerts and shopping.I want to thank Chua Lee Hoong for her excellent article. It is a reminder that Singaporeans have no need and do not want people like Chee around. We as a nation have no need for Western style democracy and freedom to protest and speak in public.....after 4 decades of PAP rule we have forgotten and lost all desire for those things. What is important is the pursuit of GDP growth....as long as GDP is growing, everything else will take care of itself.
"But we either believe in democracy or we not. If we do, then, we must say categorically, without qualification, that no restraint from the any democratic processes, other than by the ordinary law of the land, should be allowed... If you believe in democracy, you must believe in it unconditionally. If you believe that men should be free, then, they should have the right of free association, of free speech, of free publication. Then, no law should permit those democratic processes to be set at nought, and no excuse, whether of security, should allow a government to be deterred from doing what it knows to be right, and what it must know to be right... "
- Lee Kuan Yew, Legislative Assembly Debates, April 27, 1955
"Yes Sir, you didn't say whether you believe, IF we believe in democracy....I guess these days the PAP believes in GDP rather than all those things...just like true love cannot be eaten....you can't eat democracy and freedom..." - Lucky Tan
Whatever Chee is, he believes in freedom and democracy. 2 things that our society has already discovered is totally useless for our well being. We do not want to waste anymore time debating this, changing our society and laws so that we can have more of democracy and freedom is just a waste of time. In fact our constitution and laws has been changed and changed again to make sure Singaporeans don't have to trouble themselves with freedom and democracy anymore. Our elections are about estate upgrading and you want to experience the freedom to protests just take a flight to Hong Kong, Seoul, Taipei or KL over the weekend. We are so lucky to be living in a society that is so orderly, men like Chee are treated as nut cases. They have to be crazy not to appreciate the wonderful system MM Lee has put in place to preserve what is most valuable to all of us - the esteemed PAP leaders who tell us what to do.
The squandered potential of Chee Soon Juan
By Chua Lee Hoong,
Political EditorToday, one cannot help but conclude that the trailblazer is more a sputtering meteor, and perhaps one with an antisocial personality disorder.
MANY people will remember the stir caused by Chee Soon Juan when he first entered politics.
The year was 1992; the occasion, the Marine Parade by-election called by then-prime minister Goh Chok Tong. Chee was a psychology lecturer at the National University of Singapore. Just 30 years old, he was eloquent, photogenic and full of passionate conviction.Mr Chiam See Tong, then-leader of the Singapore Democratic Party (SDP), hailed his new recruit as 'perhaps the most courageous person in Singapore today'. He looked forward to Chee heralding a new era in opposition politics, one in which more well-educated professionals entered the fray.What has happened in the 16 years hence? Today, one cannot help but conclude that the trailblazer is more a sputtering meteor, and perhaps one with an antisocial personality disorder.
The SDP that is now under his leadership is no more than a ragtag band, hardly credible as an opposition party.
Nowhere was this more evident than in court last week, during the three-day hearing to assess damages in the defamation suit Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong and Minister Mentor Lee Kuan Yew had won against the SDP, Chee and his sister Siok Chin.
SDP supporters numbered not more than 15 or so, even though the public gallery was invariably full. Of those who started out as neutral observers, I would venture that not a few ended up even less sympathetic to Chee after observing his behaviour up close.
Chee and his supporters will argue that the SDP's sad state of affairs is entirely the doing of the ruling party. The latter, they will allege, has used all means at its disposal to suppress the SDP's rise.
Such a 'Poor me! I'm a victim' argument will, however, cut no ice with the majority of Singaporeans, who can point to Mr Low Thia Khiang and Mr Chiam as examples of opposition politicians who have managed to get elected in successive polls in spite of the uphill battle.
Going by anecdotal evidence, Chee has disappointed an entire generation of voters who had hoped that his entry into politics in 1992 would bring about more substantial debate on political issues here.
The disappointment began early enough - barely six months after the Marine Parade by-election in fact, as a series of shenanigans came to light in rapid succession.
There was the misuse of university funds to send his wife's thesis overseas. There was the 'hunger strike' during which he drank water with glucose. There was the ouster of Mr Chiam from the SDP that led rapidly to the party's decline.From three SDP MPs in Parliament after the 1991 polls, there was none by the next election.
Chee seemed to focus his energies not on getting his party into Parliament but himself into the spotlight.
At an election walkabout at a Jurong hawker centre in 2001, he heckled then-PM Goh loudly and persistently, right in front of the dozens of people having their Sunday breakfast. It was my misfortune to have witnessed the incident with my own eyes.
In 2004, another rude heckling incident, this time at a Washington think-tank which had invited Mr Goh to give a talk.
Last year, there was Chee's performance at the International Bar Association conference at Suntec City, when he used a question and answer session on the rule of law to criticise Singapore's judiciary and focus attention on his own political misfortunes.
The attempt to play to an international audience for his own gain did not go down well with Singaporeans.
Workers' Party chairman Sylvia Lim, a speaker at the symposium, distanced herself from him when she said Singaporeans are quite capable of deciding for themselves the kind of country they want and did not need foreigners to 'canvass our agenda for us'.
'Singapore is not perfect, and we don't pretend that it is. But neither should we make it out to be worse than it really is,' she said, in what seemed a rebuke to Chee.
This Monday, it seemed to be Mr J.B. Jeyaretnam's turn to distance himself from Chee.
Acting as Chee's counsel for a contempt of court hearing, the 82-year-old seemed to be making a disclaimer when he said that while he had a duty to present the best case for his client, 'the counsel doesn't have to agree with whatever has been done by the client'.
When two prominent opposition figures have problems accepting Chee's behaviour, what more the average Singaporean?
Not that I think Chee will care about this. He marches, at least in his own mind, to a different beat. 'My Christian faith guides me, and it is a faith that compels me to fight for justice and to treat my fellow men and women with compassion,' he said in court last week.
Back in 1993, he also cited his Christian faith when talking about his 10-day hunger strike: 'I am a Christian. I came into this hunger strike under the Lord's guidance and am leaving it the same way. My life is not mine to take.'
The question though is whether mainstream Christians will accept his pattern of behaviour as being particularly Christian.
He claims to fight for justice but the way he fights has been lamentable.
Irresponsible, reckless, impulsive, unethical are all words that describe Chee's behaviour. Interestingly, they are also all words associated with what American psychologists call antisocial personality disorder, which manifests itself in a disregard for truth and for social norms.
According to a medical website, one complication that might arise from this disorder is frequent imprisonment for unlawful behaviour.
We don't know if indeed Chee suffers from this disorder. If he does, we have got to feel sorry for him. If he doesn't - well, all I can say is, Chee has squandered his potential.