Why I will not sign the petition to save the Sticker Lady

I am not going to sign the petition to move the charge againts Skl0 from Vandalism to Miscellaneous Offences (Public Order and Nuisance), because it would go against the spirit of what a good legal system ought to be.

In a good legal system, laws are decided by the people, and then applied without exception, fear, or favour to everyone. This is why it is very important to have good people in Parliament, because they are the ones who decide on the wording of the laws, and therefore the scope of each individual law, and what offences should and should not be punished.

I believe this episode simply illustrates the inadequacy of our current laws in supporting a culture of innovation and self-awareness. I agree with most of the comments about how Skl0 is a good and thought-provoking artist. Unfortunately, our laws as they exist today do not support such artists. Such artists are punished together with all the other miscreants that Skl0’s supporters believe should be punished.

If you want to petition, please petition your local MP to go to Parliament and change the law, so that Skl0 and others like her will not be punished in future.

But because the law is the way it is currently, she has to face the S$2,000 fine (no caning for her because of her gender, something which the law also currently provides her protection for).

So by all means offer Skl0 a job and give her money to pay off her fine. Just please don’t screw around with our system of law-making and law-administering, because once you do that, you give license to those who would override the laws for their own selfish ends.

Just adding a follow up comment here from the other discussion thread.

This is in response to someone who thought I meant that the law is not worded properly.

I am not suggesting that the law isn’t well worded. I am saying that the law is worded specifically to include acts such as Skl0’s under the definition of behaviour that deserves to be punished. The law is worded this way because when that law was written, the damage to the public was perceived to be greater than the benefit such acts bring. If things have changed since that time, then we need to change the law, and the way to do it is to get your MP to bring it up in Parliament so the people whose job it is to make and amend the laws actually do what they’re paid to do.

You might not agree, but some people believe that what Skl0 did was wrong, law or no law. You have to respect their views as much as you want them to respect yours. And you have to settle your differences through well-reasoned debate in Parliament (by proxy through your MP), not take your grievances before the Emperor and ask him to rule in your favour.

And that’s because we are not ruled by an Emperor.

We are a democracy, and the more people realise what that means and how it works, the better a chance we have of making Singapore the place we want it to be.

by Benjamin Kong  


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