Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Another example and illustration of fascist racism

Read similar article first written in

The above sign was found in Little India, next to Mustafa Centre. A similar sign was replaced with this particular sign quite recently. However, the content remains relatively unchanged. The main point and focus written on the sign is to tell people that it was the chinese who first settled in Syed Alwi Road (huh? what rubbish) and described their lives in this street.

Why would the street be named in Malay If the first settlers are the chinese (which the sign has claimed)? Did the chinese then speak and write Malay? Then the question is who taught them the language? Confucius? or Stamford Raffles? Also, what kind of message are they (i believe its the tourism board) trying to send to those who read the sign (which i believe, are the tourists)? Are they trying to change history and imply that though Little India is predominantly an Indian community estate, it was the chinese who were the first settlers and owns the shops and allow the Indians to later settle and run their business there now; therefore, showing how benevolent the chinese are despite one seeing more Indians in the estate, it’s still predominantly a chinese country? I really wonder its intention for putting up such utter misinformation.


  1. Recently I went to Tanah Merah Ferry Terminal along the Changi Coastal Road, with some Indian Tourists to visit Bintan Islands. I was rather surprised to notice that the directions and names in the terminal were in only three official languages. The official Indian Language was omitted, even though there are many Indians using the terminal.I have noticed similar instances in other places in Singapore too. I wonder why? Is the fourth official language,the Indian Language going to it's demise soon?

  2. You missed the point completely sim.

    The problem with the sign is that, whilst it is supposed to present the history of 'little india', it says next to nothing about the Indians but goes on only about the Chinese. That presents the Indians as inconsequential props without a history and the chinese contribution as the only one worthy of cognizance. That is grossly racist. It implies that the Indians are just incidental and of no relative consequence. This is being done all the time in the media, cultural celebrations and promotion, etc, etc, etc.

  3. Thanks ed for elaborating further. Yes i do agree with your point. It is totally a misinformation. The article was written to question the intention of putting up such sign. Such gross inaccuracy and misinformation further illustrates the fascist and racist state the country is experiencing (which was the title of the article).

  4. Hi Jes,

    Yes. The omission is quite pervasive. Even on TV we can see chinese subtitles in English programmes, which either shows that the chinese dont understand English ; ), therefore the need to have chinese subtitles or totally ignoring non-chinese interest. Also, nowadays, we dont really see non-chinese (darker skin tone; Indians / Malays) actors/actresses cast in local English programmes. Even if they are cast, they are usually given insignificant roles or roles which portray them as those from a lower social strata. Eg. 'Serves you right', 'Fighting spider' to name a few.

  5. And do you think the chinese bother about this, or even notice it? I've never met any who do, have you? Seems like we have to look high and low for empathetic chinese. Hence, one cannot be blamed for deeming 'empathetic chinese' to be quite the oxymoron don't you think. Just because we can have kopi together does not mean that they are empathetic eh. If we don't 'up' the standards for empathy, we just have to content ourselves with kopi with those who only care if it affects their own interests. Its about time the chinese begin to be honest about themselves.

    Just to correct your observations, the sign speaks about the first chinese settlers. It doesn't say that they are the first settlers - unless you're reading the tamil translation which might say otherwise;)


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