I am a non-christian. I do have some gay friends. I am a firm believer in ‘being kind to everyone whom I meet in Singapore”, regardless of race, language, religion, gender and sexual orientation.
I only do not condone public display of heterosexual/homosexual sexual behaviours because I feel that such intimate activities should be done strictly and discreetly behind closed doors.
There has been much online debate about Singapore Penal Code Section 377A recently, on whether to repeal it or not.
For background information, you may wish to read this first -> http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Section_377A_of_the_Penal_Code_(Singapore)
To repeal or retain Section 377A is a decision yet to be made by the Supreme Court of Singapore.
Recently Singapore Minister for Law & Foreign Affairs, Mr K Shanmugam has shared openly on his facebook page that he has met one LGBT group (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual & Transgender) , and had a closed-door discussion with them.
Senior Pastor of Faith Community Baptist Church (FCBC) Lawrence Khong Kin Hoong then wrote a letter to him, expressing his concern that the minister has had met this LGBT group, and would like to arrange a meeting with him to express his religious group’ standing on homosexuality or LGBT rights in Singapore.
I find it disturbing that Pastor Lawrence Khong also took the opportunity to make a similar plea to Emeritus Senior Minister (ESM) Goh Chok Tong, imposing his christian conservative beliefs, hoping that ESM Goh will help to stop the movement of repealing Section 377A, when the latter passed by the Church last Sunday (20 Jan) during his Marine Parade estate walk-about.
Christianity often emphasize “love for all men”.
Pardon me for saying this which may sound offensive – On what basis do Pastor Khong think he has the right to impose his beliefs on other people?
I feel strongly that Pastor Lawrence Khong should not impose his religious views on Singapore, which is a secular nation.
As a Singaporean, I feel that it is dangerous to have some such Singaporeans among us, who are eager to impose their religious beliefs on other fellow Singaporeans, zooming on differences.
It is also potentially dangerous to mix politics and religion altogether.
The below online article written by Todayonline reader Mr Tan Wee Cheng, pretty sums up my thoughts on the matter.
I refer to the report “Pastor’s plea to retain Section 377A sparks online furore” (Jan 18).
Traditional Asian family values emphasise love and empathy. Therefore, I am surprised that Pastor Lawrence Khong had described his campaign against the repeal of Section 377A as one motivated by his support for family values.
Most Asian countries, including China, Taiwan, Korea, Japan, Thailand, Philippines and Indonesia, do not criminalise gay communities.
Mr Khong has every right to preach his belief to his church but he should not seek to impose his views on our secular nation and, in the process, create hardship for a community which, according to many studies, comprise 5 per cent or more of any population.
I encourage him and his followers to channel their efforts towards more pressing existential issues such as global warming, poverty, disease, illiteracy and military conflicts.