Singapore – what do we know of it? It is a small little island state known for its awesome financial hub status with an economy gigantically enormous, a cause of much envy for its immediate neighbours. A country which achieved 3rd world to 1st world status in a short time, modern skyscrapers jostle with each other for space and recognition.
For 4.6 million people like me, this little island is home. For others, we are just nothing but a red dot on the map rarely seen geographically on a world map.
On the flip side, the ban on homosexual lifestyle has been very well documented with international news channels like CNN and BBC covering the situation. Interviews about the issue have been done with people like our ex-Prime Minister Lee Kuan Yew to actor Ian McKellen. Over the years, from frequent raids on bar masquerading as a “gay venue” there has been a gradual relaxation of laws till today where my home can boast an actual “gay scene” worthy of mention.
However, on 16 May 2009 – history was made. On this day, it marked Singapore’s very first legal mass public gathering of people in support for the causes of LGBT. Why pink dot? PINK is the colour of our identity cards. PINK is the colour of our national flag (red and white) combined. We are always referred to as a RED DOT, so why not make it PINK?
A little more than a few years ago, an event like this would be unimaginable. But a call was made to all who felt the need to make our voices heard. It didn’t matter if you weren’t gay; in fact none of the ambassadors for this project was gay. Gay people, straight people, “undecided” people, parents, children, families – all were told to turn up in pink.
The carnival atmosphere was nothing short of ELECTRIFYING. The sense of activism, the voice in unison supporting the freedom to love without discrimination and the unanimous purposeful aura we all felt. It all seemed a little strange but at the same time, none of us cared because we were part of history.
Finally at 5pm, the call came for all present to gather in the middle of the field to form a PINK DOT.
Czbbflier From Canada, joined Jul 2006, 1023 posts, RR: 2
Reply 9, posted (6 years 9 months 1 day 22 hours ago) and read 4588 times:
Now THAT is progress. Thank you for sharing this really wonderful moment with us all. That was a gay-pride celebration that anybody would be happy to participate in. It looked like it reflected what we really want and need for our LGBT community. Normalcy and acceptance.
Congratulations on decades of subtle activism. Persistence pays dividends in Singapore.
Bwest From Belgium, joined Jul 2006, 1415 posts, RR: 3
Reply 11, posted (6 years 9 months 1 day 19 hours ago) and read 4547 times:
My partner is from Singapore as well, and he was thrilled to see this event being organised. I think more and more Singaporeans don't care too much about what your sexual orientation is, it's just the government now that needs to follow the people and start abolishing its archaic laws. The statement of "senior minister" (or should we say "founding father") Lee Kuan Yew on homosexuality 2 years ago was already a clear, yet cautious, sign of the changing times.
It's good to see that progress being made and that people are being allowed to express themselves and be who they are with the person they love. I love going to Singapore, and events like these will only make me want to go even more.
Kiwiandrew From New Zealand, joined Jun 2005, 8898 posts, RR: 12
Reply 12, posted (6 years 9 months 1 day 17 hours ago) and read 4523 times:
Well done !
nice to see Singapore finally starting to show some concern for human rights , it has always struck me as a slightly strange place with it's combination of democracy and authoritarianism , looks like maybe the intolerance that has traditionally been one of the less pleasant aspects of the PAP may be fading with a new generation of leaders .
Moderation in all things ... including moderation ;-)
Ryanair!!! From Australia, joined Mar 2002, 4785 posts, RR: 23
Reply 13, posted (6 years 9 months 1 day 16 hours ago) and read 4507 times:
Thank you for all your kind words. The emotions felt by all and the outpouring of support during this event is simply indescribeable in words. For all those involved in this historical moment, for those who were there to soak in this milestone, the immense feeling of achievement can only be summed up by viewing this video .
Once again, I thank you all for your support.
Welcome to my starry one world alliance, a team in the sky!