My thoughts here are in response to this report on Yale's reaction to the Singapore court's conviction of Alan Shadrake.
Are open debates about death penalty so threatening to the Singapore governing and judicial establishments that such extraordinary (by global standard) measure of suppression is called for?
I believe that death penalty can be justified. I also believe that the Singapore society is ready to debate such issues as death penalty, euthanasia, and abortion. Social cohesion is not under threat with such inquiries and debates.
A true liberal education must cultivate fearless intellectual inquiries, free from taboo issues. Suppressing debates and inquiries in society can only be justified when violence and crimes are likely to ensue.
Therefore Yale's reservation about collaborating with NUS is well founded.
ps. Perhaps what is threatening to the authority is not debates on the death penalty, but inquiry into the independence of the Singapore judiciary, which has more reasons for being a taboo issue.
It is my belief that the nature of the Singapore judiciary, and its independence or otherwise, is a proper subject of intellectual inquiry in academia and in society.
Here appear occasional jottings of my random musings. Profound or jejune, they reveal the contours of my mental universe, with world history, intellectual history, civilizations, philosophy, religion, society, knowledge, and books as some major themes. Since May 2011, this blog has been exclusively focused on Singapore. All my other reflections are now posted in "Notes from Noosphere" (see link under "Miscellany" on the right margin).
Thursday, November 11, 2010
Debating Death Penalty in Singapore
Posted by Helluo Librorum at 7:31 AM
Labels: Alan Shadrake, Singapore, suppressing dissent
Subscribe to: Post Comments (Atom)
Post a Comment