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10 Nov 2008

Homosexual flasher killed: Were sentences appropriate?

Do the sentences ranging from 18 months in a reformative training centre to 4 years' jail and eight strokes of the cane - and charges of causing grievous hurt - commensurate with the severity of the offence?

Singapore, like most countries in Asia, is not known for any pattern of gay-bashing. It thus caused a stir when the 23 November 2007 death of Suhaimi Sulong came to light. Six young men went on trial last month over the case.

The details of the incident do not make it a classic case of gay bashing. The perpetrators did not go out of their way to seek out a gay individual for beating up. There was a precipitating factor - Suhaimi, 37, had exposed himself to Ahmad Nur Helmy, 20, in the toilet - but the question that should be asked was whether the response of Ahmad and his five friends was proportionate to Suhaimi's first move.

This, even considering that Suhaimi had earlier approached Ho Ching Boon, 17, and Lai Chee Kuen, 17, "making lewd comments and offering sexual services", according to the Straits Times. Suhaimi probably did not know that Ho and Lai were friends of Ahmad.

The very fact that the six were put on trial showed that the prosecution did not think that killing Ahmad was proportionate. However, what caught many people's eyes, and not only people from the gay community because I received a number of emails from straight friends drawing my attention to the case, was the fact that the charges had been downgraded from manslaughter to causing grievous hurt even before the trial began.

"Bias!" some people said. Well, maybe, or maybe not. It's worth taking a closer look at the details.

The difference between manslaughter and causing grievous hurt

Manslaughter - or "culpable homicide not amounting to murder" in Singapore's legalese - has two grades:

(a) If the act had been done "with the intention of causing death, or of causing such bodily injury as is likely to cause death," the sentence would be up to life imprisonment, with a fine and caning.

(b) If the act had been done "with the knowledge that it is likely to cause death, but without any intention to cause death," then the maximum sentence is 10 years, with fine and caning.

The reduced charge - voluntarily causing grievous hurt - also carries a maximum sentence of 10 years' imprisonment, with fine and caning. You could therefore say that the prosecutor did not give very much away.

What actually happened that early morning outside the Brown Sugar Pub in Orchard Towers? From various press reports, Ho and Lai walked away when Suhaimi propositioned them. But when Suhaimi propositioned and exposed himself to Ahmad in the toilet, Ahmad summoned his friends to chase and beat the older man. They punched and kicked him in the head repeatedly, stopping only when a taxi-driver intervened.

While there is no evidence that the group intended to kill Suhaimi, when you kick someone in the head, won't the average person know that it can cause death? Given that reasonable foreknowledge, wasn't the original charge - manslaughter (b) - correct? Why was the prosecutor persuaded to reduce the charge? Did he come to the view that Suhaimi's initial acts were provocative enough to lessen the responsibility of the six for the outcome? We don't know, because none of the press reports addressed this question.

Gay people are very sensitive to this possibility. There have been many cases in the past, in other countries, where courts have agreed with defence counsels that when one man makes a suggestive approach to another, the emotional response is understandably severe, and this, to a large extent, excuses the violent reaction that have often resulted in the death of the homosexual victim. This is known as the "homosexual panic defence".

Some Singaporeans thought that similar considerations swayed the prosecutor in this case. I don't think we know enough to come to that conclusion. In any case, as pointed out above, the maximum penalties are the same.

Yet it can be argued that especially because the penalties are the same, the act of reducing the charge sends the wrong signal. It makes the attack on Suhaimi a little less heinous than it actually was, calling it "hurt" rather than "manslaughter". This, I think, is a valid criticism.

The sentences

All six accused pleaded guilty when they appeared in court in early October. Sentencing took place a few weeks later.

For reasons not clear from press reports, the judge concluded that of the six persons confronting Suhaimi, three persons were less responsible than the others. They were sent to a reformative training centre, where they would be "confined for between 18 months and three years and put through a tough regimen of foot drills, counselling, education and vocational training," said the Straits Times.

The two 17-year-olds, Ho and Lai, were among them. So was Muhammad Ridhwan, 20. Perhaps their being under 21 had something to do with the judge's decision, but it should also be noted that Ahmad was also 20, and he was not included in this batch.

A good question would be what good reformative training might do. There seems to be a lot of emphasis on discipline ("foot drills") and obeying orders. But the problem with homophobia is that in the minds of gay-bashers, they are not breaking orders. If anything, they feel justified in their violence, because they see themselves as enforcers of a moral code. They see their victim as the one breaking rules. Hence, teaching teenagers to obey rules in effect does nothing to address the roots of homophobic violence.

Hopefully, the counselling component of reformative training would address this problem, but I honestly doubt it, for two reasons: firstly, the state does even not even see anti-gay prejudice as a problem, and secondly, due to the relative rarity of such cases, there is probably no program in the prison service touching on this subject. I am not optimistic that the months spent by these three youths in reformative training will do any good.

As for the other three, two were sentenced to four years' jail and six strokes of the cane. Ahmad, whom the judge said played a "key role", was given 4 years' jail and eight strokes of the cane.

Is that appropriate? I'd say, more or less. The sentences were about half the maximum allowed by law. Some may bay for more blood or longer jail terms. After all, a man died, they might say. But personally, I am wary of making this place an even more punitive society than we already are.

Alex Au has been a gay activist for over 10 years and is the co-founder of gay advocacy group People Like Us. He is also the author of the well-known Yawning Bread web site.


Reader's Comments

Comment #1 was deleted by its author
2. 2008-11-10 19:25  
It seems most of the people miss the issue. The issue is one of equal protection under the law. If we stack this case up against others, it becomes very evident the premise of 'equal protection' is being twisted.

One concludes from the responses on all of these forums that in Singapore, it will be hard to find a man among the 80 who will stand for one in the 20. A doubly sad commentary when even the ones in the 20 suppoort a biased view . Just not much hope here.
Comment #3 was deleted by its author
4. 2008-11-10 19:30  
A life has been taken. Whether or not Suhaimi Sulong deserved to die is not up to debate. Sure, it IS rather heinous to run around dangling your bits and pieces to a stranger and ask him to suck you off. But to dies for it is a totally different matter. These youth have had the benefit of appearing in court; to appear before a judge, to be represented, to have had their sides of the story told. Suhaimi, however, was not privy to such an arrangement. This group of young adults were jury and executioner. The only thing these kids walk away with, is the knowledge that a gay man's life, unfortunately, is in the eyes of the law, worth a lot less than a straight person's. Bearing that in mind, one can only expect an equitable level of remorse. We have a very long way to go. I for one, cannot criticise the Singapore Court decision. I live in Malaysia. If it had happened here, I dread to think of how it would have turned out.
Comment #5 was deleted by its author
6. 2008-11-10 19:39  
i still belive the hwole thing could have been made up. There is no evidence from anoyone other than gulity parties to collaberate the story.
Could have been a simple attack and they say he made a gay move.
Makes a good defence.
either way they should not have beaten him to death
Comment #7 was deleted by its author
Comment #8 was deleted by its author
9. 2008-11-10 19:49  
I strongly believe that there is an onus on gay people to behave in a respectable manner, and therefore I do not defend sexual approaches in public places.

However, a grisly murder having obviously occurred, the penalty is so slight that the Governmnent of Singapore is in danger of appearing hypocritical and complacent in not sending out an appropriate and robust message against hate crime of this kind.

I have no doubt that the individuals involved did not seek to kill, but they did kill, and they killed in a manner which cannot easily be condoned as one of passion. The principal attacker seems to have gone back to strike the victim, rather than to have over-reacted in a fit of rage or revulsion.

This verdict sends out an equally revolting message that the Government of Singapore does not equally value the lives of MSM. I have also every conviction that the perpetrators of this murder were sufficiently street-wise to know that public toilets are commonly places of sexual liason at night.

Again, I neither defend nor condone such public behaviour, but the truly sickly message from this tragic incident is that the state has effectively de-valued Suhaimi's life. That is deeply regrettable and send out precisely the wrong kind of dangerous message.

I was a MSM who for whatever reason, whether innocently or with the hope of finding sex, frequented public wash-rooms, I would not have any confidence that the government viewed this murder with the gravity that it should.

Gavin (Ireland)
Comment #10 was deleted by its author
Comment #11 was deleted by its author
12. 2008-11-10 20:11  
I really doubt this is an act of homophobia. The guy exposed himself! Yes the killing was extreme, but it wasn't like they weren't provoked. I as a gay guy would feel most uncomfortable and very annoyed if some weirdo 37 year old guy pulled his dick and made sexual advances at me! I really feel this guys death is very unfortunate, but it should be a lesson to people that NO means no, and one should never take advantage of a drunk person, especially if you cannot tell if their gay or str8!
13. 2008-11-10 20:31  
de Tocqueville said "people get the government they deserve". It seems so true for Singapore now.
Comment #14 was deleted by its author
15. 2008-11-10 21:27  
I have mixed feelings regarding this case.

On one hand, it is fair, since the victim "provoked" those men insensibly. Why approach strangers for sex? What's more in public.

On the other hand, i feel that the men acted too impulsively. Is there a need to cause physical hurts to a gay? If they cannot stand gay men, then stay away from them. they have no rights to cause hurts on another fellow human.

Our society needs to seriously do some soul searching. It is becoming more like a "dog-eat-dog" society.
16. 2008-11-10 21:30  
What a sad story, may this foolish man now rest in peace he sure as hell had a violent end I really wish he gets it right next time around (errr next life time) Yeah I agree with many sentiments here, no matter how bad his behavior was his death wasn't a appropriate response, let's wish that it high lights for other gay men the only time for being a 'skanky queer' is in the privacy of ones own home...or some one else's, unfortunately when slutty types go wild on straight boys decent gay men get tarnished along with them, as in all minority groups the many get tainted by the bad behavior of the few, sure it's not right or fair but it's a reality we must deal with and individually we must act accordingly so as to not add to the fire of discrimination on the many...it's called 'social responsibility' building bridges with the straight world to win support needs being thoughtful about how one conducts ones self at all times we can win against discrimination but we must play our part to secure it.
17. 2008-11-10 22:44  
I wish the article was headed "alleged" homosexual flasher.

I feel sad for the victim, no matter how foolish he is alleged to have been, and the victim's family in particular. Maybe he was married and his family knew nothing. They have had no opportunity to counter the allegations made by the people that killed him. Even Alex, who is usually quite careful, has assumed that what has been reported in the press about the deceased is true. But these reports are not even consistent if you google and compare all the different stories about what he is said to have done.

I would have expected the the killers to have faced severe cross-examination over why they acted as they did, which they might have done if faced with one of the culpable homicide charges. Remember, the ringleader of the killers also appears to have been loitering in the WC "combing his hair".

But at the end of the day, we do not know the details of what the prosecutor had in his file, and what persuaded him or her to proceed on the much lesser charge even though it had the same tariff for punishment as the lesser homicide charge. Is there some procedure for establishing this?

Also, Alex, the culpable homicide provisions of the Singapore penal code are quite different to the English common law offence of manslaughter, though they apparently get referred to as manslaughter in the press.

As for the victim's lack of wisdom in cruising in a straight WC (if true) : In such cases it is not uncommon for the cruiser to not even think of themselves as gay, and so they would never consider going to a gay venue, or even know about such places. They are also often sad people trapped in straight marriages, and/or high-powered or sensitive jobs that they believe they would lose if they were recognised. And such a person would not see themselves as belonging to, let alone harming the reputation of, the gay community, if such a thing can be said to exist.

But the press has told us nothing of this man or his circumstances, so we can only speculate.

On the punishment of the killers, only those with all the evidence can say whether it is just, and how it compares to similar straight cases, but I think it would certainly be wrong for them to face the death penalty.

18. 2008-11-10 22:51  
Westerners inhabit a world where science, for better and for worse, has become the final arbiter in all disputes in every aspect of society. Because morality has failed so miserably to offer any consistent guidance to humans in their daily behavior, we have unwittingly turned to science and technology to solve all our evils.

Singaporeans, those culturally hermaphroditic creatures that display both Western balls and Eastern breasts, become aroused in two different ways when confronted with an incident such as the death of Suhaimi. Particularly for those Singaporeans who have spent time in the West, a logical, scientific, low-context examination that restricts itself to the incident and the incident only is the natural response. But, lah, you cannot fool the genes and blood that run through your bodies. And so, Singaporeans also display a more emotional, high-context response that asks all sorts of questions including: Why the hell is a grown man being such a poor role model to our children? Aren't these the children of high-ranking members of our society? Aren't these children high performers in school who may one day serve our society well if only given a second chance? Is the loss of a gay life as serious as that of a heterosexual one?

Presently it is well established in the scientific community that adolescent brain development centers on the frontal lobe. This is the area responsible for "executive functions" that include planning, impulse control and reasoning. Maturation of this area of the brain is very gradual and not completed until the mid-20s. The abilities to control impulse behavior and resist peer pressure are not fully developed and there is no doubt that the Singaporean court was swayed by this science in handing down such lenient sentences, especially for the minors.

Couple this science with the Singaporean government's imperative to maintain law and order and to promote the norms of a heterosexual agenda--throw in the fact that the parents of these boys begged and pleaded and shed tears in front of the court promising responsibility for their children--when all was said and done, Singapore's unique brand of justice prevailed. The irony here is that the people who seem to be most surprised by the result are the Singaporeans themselves.
Comment #19 was deleted by its author
20. 2008-11-10 23:08  
should we not question the obvious premise, had the victim not been gay... had he been straight and was hitting on a girl and exposed himself to her... or had it been a woman hitting on a boy, do you think (1) they would have killed him and (2) the government would have reduced the charges to anything other than murder? i mean, what ever happened to saying "i'm not your type, get lost"

since the victim is deceased i guess we'll never really know what happened, i mean it's just as likely the 20 yo fabricated the story, maybe the 6 guys were drunk and wanted to gay bash someone who looked androgenous, and what were they all doing in a public restroom in the wee hours of the morning... sitting on the can, tapping their feet and sending hand signals underneath the stalls

regardless of how the media has portrayed the victim, if the laws were not so intolerant of the LGBT community, i don't know if this kind of behavior would have been "tolerated" against another person, regardless of his race or orientation

i know the circumstances sound creepy but come on people, do you believe everything the media says, also the issue really isn't his supposed creepiness... it's the fact that he was murdered for a terrible reason and the government supported it by handing down a lesser sentence

we need to stick together and support each other, as this case shows we are not given the same protection under the law, and yes please try to be less creepy if you can
21. 2008-11-11 00:52  
"But personally, I am wary of making this place an even more punitive society than we already are."

I cannot agree more with Alex Au.
22. 2008-11-11 03:59  
Given that the most guilty guys who did this are going to be caned as well as imprisoned, they are not exactly getting off scot free, far from it.

I'm being pretty un-PC here for the sake of argument, but if we in Europe had the SG-type cane, (which as I understand it is a type of intense repeated torture over a period of time, allowing for medical recovery between sessions), for violent and hate crime, I can't help wondering if it may drastically reduce those types of crime overnight plus reduce serious overcrowding in our jails.

But it may turn out not to be any more of a deterrent; for example it's well established after decades of detailed debate in the UK and much evidence that fear of the death penalty is no deterrent for murder, (plus very many innocent people would have been executed, instead of released years after the event), so it has never returned in about 50 years of absence.

We do have a particular problem at the moment though in the UK with teenage knife and (increasingly) gun crime and caning could look like a solution. However, using such violence against the perpetrators, though tit-for-tat, may be treating the symptom rather than the cause, and may also actually teach youngsters that violence and fear are the answer to problems, rather than mutual understanding (which makes for a better society in the long run).

But it's an academic consideration; caning would never be allowed because it is actually a form of torture and as such seriously illegal throughout Europe, and shocking to most people there.

23. 2008-11-11 09:12  
Well an eye for an eye. Killed someone and be prepare to die for your crime.
24. 2008-11-11 09:22  
An eye for an eye makes the whole world blind (or words to that effect) - Gandhi
25. 2008-11-11 11:12  
Well, none of the boys are going to be losing their lives in this case, so thankfully, "blindness" does not threaten us here. But to address Alex' concern that "emphasis on discipline" will do nothing to address the underlying homophobia, I think it has not been unequivocally established that the boys are in fact homophobes. Yes, they killed a gay person, but I think before you start branding someone a homophobe there has got be some pattern of thinking or behavior to warrant the label. If we take the press at their word, but for Suhaimi's provocation none of the boys would have killed a gay man. Had they been out hunting to kill a gay person, that of course would be a different story. (I was once held at knife point by two black kids in New York. I fought back, and believe me, I wanted to kill them at the time. But I don't think anyone could fairly say that I now hate all black people.)

If the boys had been threatened with a knife, instead of a penis, arguably the boys would have killed that person as well. As I stated in an earlier post, the science shows that boys that age have not yet fully developed adult capacities for impulse control and reasoning. Perhaps more mental discipline is exactly what the boys need--discipline is what could have made them walk away from the situation. I doubt the Singapore government is going to give these boys awareness classes on gender and sexuality before it is clearly shown that they do in fact need to be sensitized on that specific topic.

If it's any consolation, I don't think there's a penal system in this world that has gotten its rehabilitation programs right yet. You're welcome to visit America anytime and discover that our rates of recidivism are a marvel of human engineering.
26. 2008-11-11 11:31  
hello.. have we forgotten that suhaimi had exposed himself and offered sexual services to two teens...he has really done a disservice to the gay community. how would you feel if your teenage brother/son encountered someone like suhaimi... don't forget these are straight guys in their teens. .. can u imagine what the parents of those "bashers" must have felt now.. "that gays caused all this"... thanks to that idiotic suhaimi.. sorry i don't have any sympathy for such a guy.
27. 2008-11-11 11:45  
#19 - seoulseeker spot on! :P
Comment #28 was deleted by its author
29. 2008-11-11 11:54  
*Sigh* I personally would prefer

"manslaughter: (b) If the act had been done "with the knowledge that it is likely to cause death, but without any intention to cause death," then the maximum sentence is 10 years, with fine and caning."

as the proper sentence for this particular case mainly because they kicked him on the head and those who do the kicking clearly understand the implication of such action.

However, after reading through what Suhaimi supposedly had done as reported. I find it hard to give a fair judgment. Allowing gay guys enticing, molesting, seducing or publicly offer sex at unsuitable public venue degrade other gay guys who are not desperate. Some gay bashing could be avoided if we do not think with our other "head". Toilet and park scenes are often high risk areas. It was a risk this particular sexual predator willingly took. I do not feel sad for him. Problem with this case, the guy is dead so who could justify the young lads' proposition claim? Was Suhaimi a regular at public toilet offering sexual service?

As for those young lads, I do agree we should not cultivate hatred and vigilante against homosexual just because society is still naive about sexual orientation. Using the term "grievous hurt" in this court case may or do imply wrong message to the general public. In the future, Singaporean minor could kill and gets away with a lesser punishment. No matter their age, bodily harm that cause death should have a heavy sentence sending clear message out "Physical violent is not a solution".
30. 2008-11-11 11:54  
@ steveuk & Seoulseeker - Yr commentaries helped bring in a whole new perspective into the matter.
Thanks for sharing.

31. 2008-11-11 11:56  
I think , that in the first place Suhaimi should have not exposed himself to teens.. I am sure there are many Gay saunas, clubs and other places that he could have gone to get some male sex. Whether it was a straight man showing his pee, pee to girls or a gay showing his dick to some guys, It is not correct .... I think we as gays should grow up and start using our brains instead of our dicks to think . If we want to be accepted as part of society then we should learn to behave like the rest in terms of morals and decency.

This sort of behavior does not make us look good in anybody's eyes, Gay or straight!.
32. 2008-11-11 12:50  
Hey what a great point the author raised about gay bashers identifying with upkeeping the moral code as opposed to breaking it and about reformative training being inadequate. I would have never thought of that!
Comment #33 was deleted by its author
34. 2008-11-11 13:43  
Sorry but I must dispute with the author that the men were culpable of the lesser charge of manslaughter 304(b), The penal code says -
304. Whoever commits culpable homicide not amounting to murder shall be punished
(a) with imprisonment for life, or imprisonment for a term which may extend to 20 years, and shall also be liable to fine or to caning, IF THE ACT BY WHICH DEATH IS CAUSED IS DONE WITH THE INTENTION of causing death, or OF CAUSING SUCH BODILY INJURY AS IS LIKELY TO CAUSE DEATH; or
(b) with imprisonment for a term which may extend to 10 years, or with fine, or with caning, or with any combination of such punishments, if the act is done with the knowledge that it is likely to cause death, BUT WITHOUT ANY INTENTION to cause death, or TO CAUSE SUCH BODILY INJURY as is likely to cause death.

In this case the actions of the men were "causing such bodily injury as is likely to cause death", as in 304a which carries a maximum penalty of life. Para b says if the act is done WITHOUT ANY INTENTION ... to cause such bodily injury as is likely to cause death.
6 men kicking one man in the head is causing injury likely to cause death and the injury was carried out INTENTIONALLY.
304(b) applies to death caused by accident or negligence like drunk driving, where the defendant did not intend to cause injury, it does not apply to deliberate violent acts. Therefore being charged with "voluntarily causing grievous hurt" IS a significantly lesser charge and with a much reduced maximum penalty - Life > 10 years.

In similar cases (ie the attack was provoked, there was a sexual connotation but not gay) where violent beatings resulted in death the defendants faced manslaughter. (see my post on the previous story "Bashers in Orchard Towers case get jail, cane" #45) AND received larger sentences.

It is not a matter of seeking vengeance but seeking equal protection through the law. How punitive the sentences are and how constructive they are is a separate issue, one to be considered generally. The issue is - was the victim 'valued' by the courts in the same way as similar victims, the answer is he plainly wasn't and as the only difference was he was gay we can only assume that is the mitigating factor, especially in view of the homophobic climate that prevails in the establishment there.
Comment #35 was deleted by its author
36. 2008-11-11 14:05  
And to all those who say that his behaviour was wrong and that it gives gays a bad name. Why does it ? Does it give str8's a bad name when a str8 guy flashes as girls or women or uses prostitutes or as sex outside marriage ? Are all str8 people the same ? Of course not and neither are gays. The difference is that you only see negative stories about gays in the media, there are no reports of gays living ordinary lives as there are of str8 ppl. Why ? Because you are not allowed to promote ANY KIND of gay lifestyles in Singapore.
What you are saying is that gay men have to behave in a narrow moralistic way when str8 men don't have to because we will create a bad impression. Sorry guys it's too late "moral" or not you ARE all immoral merely by being gay whether you cruise public places or flash in toilets or not. The attitude will not change, the Government doesn't say that only immoral gay lifestyles cannot be promoted but moral ones can be because they regard all gays as immoral it doesn't matter what you do.

Upkeeping moral codes ?Sexual Moral codes are for individuals to choose in a free society, there is a big difference between acts that cause no physical harm and those that do. What kind of 'moral code' is it when someone is killed because his sexual behaviour is undesirable ? It's the same moral code that sees gay men hanged in Iran and imprisoned in many repressive countries.
37. 2008-11-11 14:18  
You really don't read very well do you gymhotbod.
Your version of the story is not accurate and is irrelevant in any case.
The guy approached two younger guys first, LATER he approached a DIFFERENT guy. Whatever happened, whatever he did is not relevant in law. That is the point. The law was not applied fairly. They took the law into their own hands but were not charged with the crime they committed. He cannot be charged for his non-violent crime cos they killed him instead of reporting him.

If you are drunk and over the limit in charge of a car and you kill someone the charge is manslaughter, under 304 - B, because you did not intend to cause hurt to the victim, that is what section B is intended to cover, the same applies if someone dies because you neglect Health & Safety Rules.
These men did not accidently cause hurt they deliberately caused it so 304A applies. But they were only charged with causing hurt not homicide.

You find me any example of anyone EVER being charged in the same way when the victim was str8 and I'll shut up gladly.
Comment #38 was deleted by its author
Comment #39 was deleted by its author
40. 2008-11-11 14:58  
Post #31 PnCGWMen says (Posted : 11 November 2008 14:48) :

#28 If you decide to agitate lions and throw yourself to them, you cannot blame the animals for hurting you.

1) These were human beings not wild animals, humans are supposed to be able to choose their actions not be governed by primitive instincts.
2) How many lions are allowed to walk the streets in Singapore ? None. Why ? Because they are dangerous and the public would not be safe, so why should young men who behave like them be allowed to ?
3) If a lion was set free from the zoo do you think the authorities would tell anyone it attacked that it was their own fault ?
4) So you regard str8 venues and public places as equivalent to a lion's den ? That says a lot for how you regard str8 society and the value placed on gay life there. It's our fault for being gay not their fault for being violent homophobic killers and we should be very careful how we behave. Interesting how str8 people are never attacked in gay venues. Obviously we must not be primitive uncontrolled "animals" like st8r men. How come ?

Lastly kindly stop claiming to speak for the whole of Singapore or even the majority of gay Singaporeans. You have no right to, you have not conducted a survey, you have not been chosen by others to speak on their behalf. These are just your views and it's pathetic to try to justify them as if they are widely held views when you know no such thing, especially as hardly anyone else shares your narrow minded attitude on any of the posts on here, you are in a tiny minority.
41. 2008-11-11 15:58  
PnCGWMen writes in a most clear and succint way. He stays on the issue and has facts to back up his case. He leaves the pining and whining emotion out and stresses the point. It would be good for the posters to read his commentary until they understand what he is saying before they offer slanderous ones of their own.....
42. 2008-11-11 16:55  
Let Hossan Leong expose himself to the straight venues.....he is already making a mockery of gay people by being a TOTALLY disgusting VERY UGLY sampy queen. So...should some straight guys beat him to death outside the theatre after he does his lousy performance? YES...should their sentence be minimal because they were overwhelmed and intoxicated by Hossan's aura? YES YES YES.
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51. 2008-11-11 18:55  
Once again Singapore reminds the world what a pathetic joke it is when it comes to dispensing punishment that is proportionate to the crime

These gutless thugs get 18 months to 4 years for a gay bashing that results in the death of a man....less than what you could expect to receive from a Singapore court for being in possession of a vial of cocaine
Comment #52 was deleted by its author
53. 2008-11-11 19:03  
No, not a "druggy". Never used the stuff in my life. If you're baiting me, ha ha very funny. However, if you can't understand the point I'm making (as I suspect), pity you - go and join PAP
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56. 2008-11-11 19:50  
Post #29 PnCGWMen says

"...And to all those who say that his behaviour was wrong and that it gives gays a bad name. Why does it ? Does it give str8's a bad name when a str8 guy flashes as girls or women or uses prostitutes or as sex outside marriage ? Are all str8 people the same ? Of course not and neither are gays. The difference is that you only see negative stories about gays in the media, there are no reports of gays living ordinary lives as there are of str8 ppl. Why ? Because you are not allowed to promote ANY KIND of gay lifestyles in Singapore..."

If you are going to endorse what the straights do as an excuse, it merely reflects your own weakness. If the straights community set the precedent, it doesnt mean gays have to follow.
Promoting a gay lifestyle by your standard is rather corrosive.
Of course when a straight flashes himself to other gender, it does causes a bad name to all other gender, at least in Singapore, not sure if it is in your country.
57. 2008-11-11 20:05  
Some of you can only see the trees. Others can see the forest. Some of you guys seem more perturbed by Suhaimi's cruising straight guys at 4am than by his murder. Personally I'm not a fan of toilet sex or sex with straight guys. It's hardly a sweaty and glorious celebration of our sexuality and physicality, is it? But to each his own. And no matter how distasteful and sad, it is an inevitable part of our world. A preserve of the all too many closeted, married, ashamed, inexperienced, and sexually unsuccessful among us. It is an activity that thrives where shame thrives. So guys, let's not get too high and mighty in our tut-tutting like old maiden aunts. Let's stop blaming Suhaimi for exposing that sordid and sad but small part of our world.

Instead let's focus our anger on where it belongs. A man has been murdered. He was not killed by bunch of sweet young kids somehow driven to justifiable rage by, so they say, Suhaimi's unwanted attention and explicit invitation to have their little pipis sucked dry. One of the killers was already well disposed to violence as his abused wife has testified. Not quite so sweet, huh? What triggered the violence will never really be known. Maybe Suhaimi was too reckless and explicit. Maybe it was just a look that lingered too long. Maybe the wife-beater's violent streak just overwhelmed everyone and transformed the others into a pack of murderous wolves.

I happen not to believe entirely the killers' account of what happened. Defendants tend to tell tales that will make them appear in a better light. Defense lawyers are well paid to spin the stories into believable testimony. Moral outrages, especially homo ones, play well in Singapore. But you can chose to believe what you want. It really doesn't matter.

Whatever happened, the charges and the sentences were disproportionately light. (And gymhotbod, your suggestion that caning is worse than hanging kinda made me wonder if you've been smoking something that's illegal in SG). Do they reflect the homophobia of Singapore society? Certainly. The downgrading of the charges to the equivalent of involuntary manslaughter is perhaps acceptable on narrow legal grounds. But there can be no doubt that the lenient sentences betray a marked anti-gay bias. Get caught with a 20-gram bag of weed and you get hung. Kick a fag to death and you get spanked. I'm certainly not suggesting that Suhaimi's killers should have been charged with first degree murder and faced the death penalty. But c'mon guys, 4.5 years for taking a human life in such a grotesque way just ain't enough. The injustice diminishes us all. Not just you Singaporeans. But gays everywhere.

I dunno. Maybe the collision of Confucius, Calvin and Mohammed has created a messy moral compass in Singapore. Messy because fitting in is the supreme virtue. Messy because sexual "morality" seems to have overwhelmed most other human values. Messy because those deemed immoral have very little value. Me? I'm as "immoral" as I can be. Wheeeeeee! But I live in France. It's expected. And valued.
58. 2008-11-11 20:33  
Post #34 gymhotbod.
'Report him ??? Are you kidding ?? You are able to do that when you are drunk ??? Amazing ....."

There is so much wrong with this statement I wonder if you are capable of rational thought - drunk or sober.

1) What evidence is there that they were incapably drunk ? None
2) They were not so drunk as to not get others to join them in attacking the man, if you can get your friends to join in an attack on one man you are quite capable of complaining to the police.
3) They were not so drunk that they could not coordinate their limbs into inflicting a vicious life taking attack. You try attacking anyone when you are too drunk to be able to make a call [to the police], anyone that incapable would just fall over.
4) If they were too drunk to report him then they would have been too drunk to notice his flashing or to react in the premeditated way they did.

He is not a martyr, he was a foolish man who took a risk and was unlucky. The man is not the issue it's the application of law in your own country. If you are quite happy for men to be let off for KILLING a gay man, when they would not have been if he had been str8, then fine. Just pray that you don't become the victim of similar prejudice one day, no matter how hard you try to conceal your sexuality, how 'moral' you pose, the truth will out and you will find yourself just as much at risk of being killed because to any violent minded homophobic bigots out there, the message has been sent:

Your life as a gay man ain't worth a bean in Singapore.
59. 2008-11-11 20:34  
Omg... forget gay or straight. They killed a friggin man!
60. 2008-11-11 20:50  
Post #39 pheramones you make me sick- body, looks and brains ! Life ain't fair ! :D
Thank you for you reasoned and balanced view of the incident and your final paragraph sums it up so well. Singapore is in a mess. Violence is increasingly tolerated far more than sex, just look at the amount of violence portrayed on TV that is not censored in the way anything sexual is. Any society that condemns people far more for sexuality than they do for violence and killing is not just messy but plain sick at heart and doomed.

Witness what happened to Nazi Germany, Inquisitional Spain and countless other violent yet sexually repressive regimes that had that same misbalance.
61. 2008-11-11 21:41  
Re Post #42 .... thanks PnCGWMen for the compliment... and thanks for being able to see the forest and not just the trees that gymhotbod likes to piss on... unbelievable, innit? you-know-who is like a gay version of a jewish hitler... soon he'll be opening concentration camps for toilet queens! ... and can u let him know that it's caning, not canning?... everytime he tells us that "canning is worst than hanging" i have visions of mixed fruit or stewed tomatoes dancing in my head... but we can let the worse vs worst thing pass, i guess.... it's bad manners to be TOO critical (evil grin)
62. 2008-11-11 21:53  
Whether it is the trees or forest, it just takes one spark to set the whole forest inflamed. Let's not play with fire by glorifying the shameful or shameless acts in inappropriate places of public. If people want to glorify their bodies anyhow and anywhere, they are welcome to continue in their own nations but do not impose their inflammatory standards in Singapore because we may receive Western education but we only eat the meat and spit out the bones. Keep your bones in your own backyard
63. 2008-11-11 21:59  
I heard a Filipino maid got hanged for murder in Sg despite provocation of serious abuse by employer, I don't know the details. Is that true, and is there any comparison that can be drawn to the present case ?
64. 2008-11-11 22:34  
re Post #44.... Huh? No one is glorifying "shameless" acts in inappropriate places. Most of us are simply condemning the shameful miscarriage of justice. The fact that you and some other Singaporeans are so blinded by Suhaimi's ALLEGED impropriety that you can see nothing else is a sad explanation of why such injustice can be so easily imposed and accepted. Sad sad sad.
65. 2008-11-11 22:55  
Post #46

What is the point of condemning the judiciary system for an act of stupidity? The important thing is to learn a lesson and never repeat the silly mistake. Be remorseful.

It is not about trees or forest here, it is about stupidity and wisdom.
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67. 2008-11-11 23:50  
Post #48 pheramones says (Posted : 11 November 2008 23:47) :

Re Post #47 .... Because it is the duty and responsibility of every citizen to hold the government and judiciary accountable. Accepting obviously unjust actions for the sake of safety simple enables the prejudices and irrationalities to continue and to be expressed again and again.

Yet, I fear that is not what you meant. I hope you are not back to the Suhaimi tree again. I hope it's not just the gay population that you want to learn a lesson and be remorseful. Because, dude, the only lesson they can learn is that they are not worth much in the eyes of Singapore law. The only thing they should be sorry about is that they don't get the justice and dignity they deserve. Yeah, yeah, Suhaimi was reckless and stupid. So what? Sex is not as big a sin as murder, is it? And not as big a sin as the miscarriage of justice. Get your priorities right before you begin to preach.

This poor dead guy sure isn't a poster boy for us all. No one but Suhaimi himself is responsible for his actions. In fact, you can't even be sure he was gay, can you? Surprise surprise but desperate and/or drunk straight guys also look for a hole (any hole!) to plug. Take a trip to the Middle East if you don't believe me.

And yes indeed, it is about wisdom. And courage. Not about closed minds and sexual paranoia
68. 2008-11-12 03:09  
The conversation is now reminding me of Kurosawa's 1950 masterpiece Rashomon in which the rape of a woman is recounted through four different eyewitnesses, each version of the story freely contradicting the other. Unless any of the people posting here happened to be a fly on the wall in Orchard Towers that night, you can throw around the word ALLEGEDLY as much as you want but that isn't going to make your version of the Suhaimi story any more truthful than what we have been told.

ALLEGEDLY Suhaimi took out his cock, threw Ahmad up against the wall with a gun, attempted to shove his tongue down Ahmad's throat and was brutally fondling Ahmad's cock. This could have ALLEGEDLY happened too--I'm sure the Singapore government didn't want this version of the story getting out either. But if this is what happened, then Suhaimi's death was completely justified.

You can argue all you want about conspiracy theory; you can argue that gays are being treated as second-class citizens in Singapore. But if you're not going to actually DO something about this incident other than chat in the safety of this forum, it is pointless to hurl around these ALLEGED theories of government cover-up. People, we are dealing with GOVERNMENT here. By definition, governments cover up ugly incidents. And to all the Westerners here, yes, it happens in your enlightened countries as well. The US has been denying extraordinary rendition for years now. European governments have cowardly lied about their ugly roles in detaining terrorists. Guantanamo Bay has just been one big happy tequila party. Right.

Year after year, Singapore consistently ranks as one of the most corrupt-free nations in the world according to Germany's non-profit group Transparency International. In the 2008 survey Singapore's politicians and public officials ranked 4th. Australia came in 9th; the US, 18th; France, a dismal 23rd, on par with Uruguay and only a bit better than that bastion of Middle Eastern democracy called Qatar.

Suhaimi is gone. We will never know what "truthfully" happened that night. But please stop talking about what ALLEGEDLY happened as if it were the truth. TYPING IN ALL CAPS DOES NOT MAKE YOUR VERSION OF THE STORY CORRECT. IT ALSO DOES NOT MAKE WESTERN VALUES THE PANACEA FOR SOCIAL ILLS THROUGHOUT THE WORLD. If you really want to do something about police-cover ups, start by demonstrating in front of your own local police precinct. If you really want to show solidarity with gays in Asia, march with us in one of our gay pride parades. Until then, please stop preaching THE TRUTH.
69. 2008-11-12 04:17  
a very well balanced article and well thought out. one major thing struck me about this case: that this guy exposed himself, and then when he was rebuffed he went and did it again! (albeit at somebody else). this doesn't mean he deserved death, but outside the gay world this is highly unacceptable, and gay OR straight - a guy doing it would probably get beaten up. why do certain men seem unable to accept no, instead they persist with the same behaviour like a sex pest. it is not acceptable! as for his death ... yes that it terrible, 4-4.5 years is about what someone in west would get for manslaughter after good behaviour - they didnt intend to kill him, but teenagers can have poor judgement. if people are going to risk dangerous behaviour to get their thrills, then this should be a lesson that sometimes the consequences are even more severe than you bargained on. i dont think this case shows gay bias, its just a first emotional response that makes it seem that way - look at it objectively.
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71. 2008-11-12 07:02  
According to Hong Kong based Political and Economic Risk Consultancy (PERC), Singapore retained its ranking as the overall least risky country in Asia in the year 2007. In 2008, it is ranked as the second best judicial system in Asia after Hong Kong. Singapore's efficient, transparent and extremely sound legal system have been a key enabler for the country's tremendous growth over the past few years.

Obviously, there are many who are into adventurous flashing, etc, and feell deeply for the victim's death. And if you happen to be get caught or injured during one of the misadventures, and unhappy with the judiciary system of Singapore, here is one criminal lawyer who might be able to help you to mitigate your case or appeal for your misdeeds. And his name is Subash Anandan.

There is no point to criticize the judiciary system unless one is able to show with evidences through comparison about how similar cases involving straights or gays are judged.

To me, one should be responsible for one's actions, whether the outcome is death, jail or fines. And more importantly, one should learn from mistake whether from self or others. Flashing or fleshing or provocation may be a fetishism to you, but do it wisely and safely. Nobody can guarantee the outcome of a stupid action.
72. 2008-11-12 07:16  
4 and a half years in prison for killing a man for flashing and lewd behaviour?? Are you effing kidding me?
73. 2008-11-12 07:54  
re Post #49 seoulseeker.....Not sure what has inspired you to talk about conspiracy theories and government cover-ups. Certainly some of us have pointed out that an obvious anti-gay bias and irrationality permeates Singapore society. The government rather than rising above the squalid prejudices reflects, condones and, in its censorship and judicial decisions, institutionalizes them.

It's not a matter of applying Western values. After all, we have the shining example of Nelson Mandela applying human and African values to transform South Africa from one of the most despicable countries in the universe to one where the rights and value of every citizen are protected regardless of race, gender or sexual identity. Geez, who would have thought 20 years ago that South Africa, the land of soul-numbing apartheid (and a country where same-sex sex in private could land you a prison sentence twice as long as the one given to Suhaimi's killers), would be the first country in the world to legalize gay marriage and enshrine gay rights in its consititution?!!! Sure, South Africa's long-held and deeply-rooted anti-gay prejudice didn't disappear overnight but when your government respects you the society begins to respect you too. And that, Monsieur Seoulseeker, is the message we want Singapore to hear.

And many mercis for letting me know that France is the 23rd most corrupt nation on earth. It's because Paris has a gay mayor, you know. And because homosexuality has been legal in France for the last 200 years. Letting those depraved homosexuals run free and equal is a sure-fire recipe for corruption. But oops, Maybe not. Transparency International's assessment was mostly based on a big scandal that turned out to an election-year mudslinging fabrication. The corruption didn't actually happen. And the other evidence of "corruption"? Hmmmmm. French companies pay bribes to officials in developing countries to secure business. Who would have thought, huh? Bad bad bad corrupt French! By the way, the French for sarcasm is le sarcasme. :)

Now back to the Suhaimi case. The adjective ALLEGED (oops, sorry... i mean alleged) is right and proper here. I can only repeat that the accounts of the accused killers for what happened are necessarily self-serving and therefore not entirely and automatically reliable. The police were satisfied with the evidence (i.e. the interrogation of the suspects). Whether the threshhold of that police satisfaction was high or low, who knows? Personally I have a few vague suspicions about this or that untruth or exaggeration. At first I mis-read the newspaper reports and thought that Suhaimi offered to give the guys a blow job. Quite believable. It's what toilet queens do. Then I found out that he "invited" one of the guys to give him a blow job. Never! No gay guy in his right mind wanders into a public toilet and asks the first cute guy who comes in to suck his pipi. Never ever! Flash him, maybe. Lick his lips, maybe. Stare, maybe. Offer to give a blow job, maybe. But ask the stranger to go down on him, never! Either Suhaimi was just a drunk straight guy looking for a hole or the killer was fibbing. Take your pick.

If the police chose to believe the accused, it is hardly evidence of a cover-up or conspiracy. If the court chose to believe them, it is not a cover-up or conspiracy. Neither the police nor the courts merit charges of bias in this respect. But, when it comes to sentencing, the picture changes drastically. The judiciary's devotion to the strictest notions of law and orders and the frequency of draconian punishments handed out now suddenly softens dramatically. No one has been able to show similarly lenient sentences for comparable crimes not involving gay victims. Consequently we are obliged to assume a distinct bias at work here. Got it?

Seoulseeker, you do make some interesting points. Of course I won't tell you what they are. :) It's fun arguing with you.

Re post #51 Mithras: We hear ya! Again and again. I don't agree with your moral crusade but i agree that furtive sex in public places is a no-no. Cuz it's so boring. Might as well stay home and jerk off with some porno, no?
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76. 2008-11-12 10:04  
#53 - pheramones

I don't know what led you to believe that I was picking on you. I was addressing everyone who has posted on this article and the previous two. Hopefully, this will be the last and final installment of the Fridae Webmaster Suhaimi Trilogy. So I believe you are two articles late into the discussion. If I have overlooked any of your previous comments, je suis tres desolee (which means "I don't give a flying fornication about anything you have said" in Gauloiserie.)

Thank you for pointing out that Singapore could greatly benefit from the application of the human and African values espoused by Nelson Mandela. We will have to add them to the laundry list, right under Western values.

As for my point on Transparency International, had you not been so zealous in your desire to be sarcastic perhaps you would have understood that France is the 23rd most honest nation on this planet, not the 23rd most corrupt as you were so anxious to argue in your bizarre outburst on Gay Paree's mayor and French business dealings in the ever-so-happy world of La Francophonie. But of course, if in France, the terms for honesty and corruption are interchangeable, then I concede with all the panache I can muster that you have won this argument.

Now as for the sentencing. You are upset that "no one has been able to show similarly lenient sentences for comparable crimes not involving gay victims." But you, mon ami, have not shown us any evidence where comparable crimes have resulted in much harsher sentences. The key word is "comparable". And because no one here knows exactly what transpired that night, we will never be able to make any kind of fair comparisons. Convinced as you are that the boys lied through their teeth, you refuse to recognize the possibility that I raisedthat in fact, Suhaimi's actions were much more heinous than the Singapore police were ready to have the world hear. Perversely, it is possible that the police did Singapore's gay community a favor by hiding certain lurid facts of the story. Without knowing what happened that night, we can't be sure that the sentence reflected an anti-gay bias. The "distinct bias" at work here could in fact have been a pro-gay bias. Got it?

Now, I will go collect my fee from the Singapore government. They have been paying me by the word, and I believe I now have enough for a round-trip ticket to Singatopia. Oh yes, now that Orchard Towers' cover is completely blown, anyone know of another toilet where I can stalk and flash to my cock's content? Any info would be greatly appreciated.
77. 2008-11-12 12:51  
Seoulseeker I salute U.

What happens if a guy flashes his dick to "charlie's angels" and they were drunk and got pissed and kick him in his ass with their high heels, and he died? Do you think the judge would then give a different verdict? Would the gals be jailed for a longer period? I really think that many gays look at this world with tinted glasses. As if the world is against them. As far as I know, many gays live happy, respectful and peaceful lives, unless until they "misbehave" of cos.
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80. 2008-11-12 14:55  
Yes, its tragic and disgusting that it was 5 on 1 and that he was killed but I think everyone is forgeting that this man WAS A PREDATOR who was trying to illicit sex from minors/ teenagers and instead makeing him into a martor.

The secentnce should NOT have been downgraded but one could also argue that a grown man should NOT be harassing boys for sex.

Dont bother replying to me. This is MY opinion and im not asking for anyone elses.
81. 2008-11-12 17:55  
Hmmm... we could look at the charges in another way. The prosecution might have thought they would have a better success in proving the charges in the reduced alternative (i.e. establishing with no uncertainty which is required for criminal charges).
82. 2008-11-12 20:38  
Post #53 seoulseeker......Hey, seoulsee, you don't have to pretend to disagree in the hopes of getting spanked. You make me chuckle so the reward is yours. Bend over. :)

I love the way you stretch and reach to make your points. Kinda sexy really. Like a Cirque de Soleil acrobat. Lots of gravity defying contortions. I love the way you transform my "Personally I have a few vague suspicions about this or that untruth or exaggeration" into your "Convinced as you are that the boys lied through their teeth". And the sheer artistry of your suggestion that the police maybe altered and softened the lurid details of the victim's depraved behaviour that night at Orchard Towers to protect the tender feelings of the Singapore citizenry takes my garlic-flavoured Gallic breath away. And how noble of the killers to sacrifice their defence to safegaurd their countryman's sensitivities. Maybe during your next performance you can show background slides of the sweet preyed-upon Suhaimi-bashing youths dispensing Earl Gray tea in the prison cafeteria in an effort to raise the aspirations of their fellow prisoners (most of whom are serving far longer sentences for being caught with a bag of weed in their posession). But oh oh, remember the one that got 4.5 years, the one who, ALLEGEDLY, was commanded to give Suhaimi a blow job, the one that used to beat his wife (allegedly, of course.... women do tend to exaggerate these things, at least according to their husbands on trial for domestic abuse) before he graduated to fag-icide, Let's not use him in your show, ok? Not quite the poster boy of innocent youth that you need to inspire sympathy.

You are one busy dude. After your stint of stretching and contorting at the cirque (psst, that's French for circus) you're pedaling to your office at the Singatopia image-repair shop. I'm feeling guilty that in parading Nelson Mandela as an example of inspired and inspiring leadership (the sort that SG might like to consider) I may have unnecessarily added to your workload. So I'm gonna delete all that liberating human values stuff from your to-do list. Feel better? But if you have the time maybe you can hammer together a small case of mild enlightenment to be delivered to those righteous old farts in Singatopia. Just to brighten up all those dark closets. Shame doesn't grow well in light and ironically the toilet queens tend to wither too.

Ok, ok, you are right. There are no comparables to suggest sentencing bias or fairness. I've searched and searched and cannot find an equivalent case. The grievous harm charge is very very rare. In fact, my lawyer pal can't find one instance (which is not to say there isn't any cuz he only spent about 3 minutes looking). The next charge up, culpable homicide without intention to cause death, seems to result in pretty hefty sentences but again not enough cases in goody-goody Singatopia for a conclusion. But let's make it clear: this is the only thing you are or ever will be right about! Got it? :)

Although Anglais is not my first language, I hope you don't mind if I correct the English in your last post. I'm in a helpful mood and I sense that you somehow rely on me for guidance and correction. Ready? OK, here goes. You said "had you not been so zealous in your desire to be sarcastic perhaps you would have understood that France is the 23rd most honest nation". I think you meant to say "had your wit and charm not been so irrepressible and had I been more coherent you would have understood...." Right? Then you wrote "...not the 23rd most corrupt as you were so anxious to argue in your bizarre outburst on Gay Paree's mayor and French business dealings in the ever-so-happy world of La Francophonie" Well, almost fluent... and almost clever. But "bizarre"? "outburst"? No and non. I think the phrase that you were looking for was "instructive revelation". Right? More off-topic correction. The Transparency International list that you use to assess French honesty does not rate or quantify actual corruption, simply the perception of corruption. In a country where critical thinking, quibbling, carping, suspicion, scepticism, complaining, and a desire for long vacations comes with the DNA, people do assume that there's corruption. Since nobody raises an eyebrow about sex scandals, we make do with real or imagined corruption scandals.

And yes, the list of venues for your next willy-flashing expedition to Singatopia is amazingly long. I just looked it up on cruisingforsex.com. My jaw dropped.

And re post #55 gymhotbod..... Oops. Sorry. I was just using Confucius, Mohammed and Calvin as shorthand for Singapore's cultural and moral influences.
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84. 2008-11-12 22:53  
Battle of the muscle tops; makes great reading.

If Pheramones could have participated in the 377 debate in SG, I suspect he would have wiped the floor with Thio Li An. It's not too late for a televised debate...
85. 2008-11-13 02:17  

IF SOME GUY OR WOMAN HAD DOME THE SAME TO ME WOULD JUST PUSH THEM AWAY OR EVEN LAUGH! nO JUSTIFICATION FOR VIOLENCE OF THIS NATURE. J d. HONG kONG AND LONDON -I personally hope STONEWALL internationall are aware of this, if not AMNESTY INTERNATIONAL it could have been your brother or son murdered like this .
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87. 2008-11-13 06:36  
This is a minor point in the light of this big mess. But language has a real effect.

I hope the day will come soon when the media, at least the gay media, will stop using the word "bashing" when a gay person is assaulted or killed.

"Bashing" trivializes the act of violence. It is assault on a gay person; in this case, it is murder of a gay man.

It's not just a bashing.
88. 2008-11-13 07:10  
These are the examples requested where str8 victims received justice when killed following provocation. The perpectrators were charged with homicide, not just inflicting grievous hurt. Included is another case where a str8 pimp for gay boys received much the same sentence as the young men in the case.

Straits Times, Singapore, 21 April 2001
Lounge manager (37) was stabbed to death by gang (aged 28/47) for allegedly molesting one of their women friends
Charge: CULPABLE HOMICIDE Sentence: 10 years' jail and 10 strokes of the cane.
The New Paper, Singapore, 2 April 2001
Killed over a pot of curry - A 45-year-old illegal immigrant was clubbed to death by three others, all Burmese aged 20 - 31.
Charge : MANSLAUGHTER. Sentence: 7 years jail and 6 strokes of the cane.
Straits Times, 8 May 1999
Jail for man who ran den for male whores
Between April 24 and 30, Tan, 46 gave free food and lodging to the Malaysian male prostitutes, who provided services such as oral sex and masturbation to male clients. Pleading for leniency, the father of two said he was a bankrupt and a divorcee.
Charge : 8 counts of abetting male persons to commit acts of gross indecency. Sentence: 4 years jail

Interesting, killing a str8 man, even an illegal immigrant, in similar circumstances of provocation, and the charge is more serious and the sentence higher. These young men got only a slightly bigger sentence than the guy just for running a gay brothel. They even received less than half the maximum penalty (10 years) for the lesser charge of grievous hurt, and yet they killed the man.
So the message is if you commit a gay sexual offence which hurts no one, that is more serious than violently taking a gay life.

Now tell us that Singapore Justice is fair and equal for all. Sorry but the fact that it is the second best in ASIA is no recommendation !! Look what it is up against - Saudi Arabia, Iran, China, Burma etc....
89. 2008-11-13 10:03  
Post #54, the term "bashing" is not solely use to highlight physical attack on queer folks.

Bash /bʃ/
-verb (used with object)
1. to strike with a crushing or smashing blow.
2. Chiefly British, Canadian. to hurl harsh verbal abuse at.

3. a crushing blow.
4. Informal. a thoroughly enjoyable, lively party.

5. have a bash (at), British. to attempt; make an attempt.
6. on the bash, British. working as a prostitute.
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96. 2008-11-13 14:46  
Re Post #63 PnCGWMen..... Well done!!! At last we have some objective proof. Of course, there are some in this forum who will continue to deny that the justice system applies double standards to its treatment of gay victims. You can have a mountain of evidence to illustrate the bias but they, with their own sense of self-worth constantly eroded by Singapore's absurd grip on 19th-century "moral" values, will always ignore the obvious. For some it's easier to rage at Suhaimi for dirtying the image of homosexuality than to resent the bias of judicial sytem. Strangely, I can almost understand their feelings. After all, these sordid criminal incidents on the edge of the gay world are the only glimpses of homosexuality that Singaporeans are allowed to have, thanks to censorship. (By the way, the hetero world has an even sleazier edge but no one would ever suggest that what goes on there truly represents straightdom.) For others, there is an almost patriotic duty to uphold Singapore's well-protected and narrow traditional values even if they, as homosexuals, are devalued by those traditions.

Re Gymhotbod's now deleted post calling me a "M*****F*****R": I see that your contribution to this discussion is as intelligent, insightful and mature as all your other posts. And thanks for all the asterisks. So decorative. Anyway, I thought I had cleared up your mistaken impression that I had dragged religion into the discussion. Maybe you missed my previous reply: "Oops. Sorry. I was just using Confucius, Mohammed and Calvin as shorthand for Singapore's cultural and moral influences." Hardly hauling the big elephant of religion into the room. Of course this presumes that you can comprehend the difference between the literal and the abstract. Oh, oh, I just noticed that you have graciously deleted all your previous posts. Bravo! I applaud you for your unexpected display of good taste. But I'm curious about the racial and religious slurs and mudslinging that you have found in this forum. I can find a little mud here and there but no slurs. Can you point them out for us?
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100. 2008-11-13 15:16  
@ Post #52 Steveuk- Who is this Thio Li An?
Maybe Pheramones can really meet him/her for a showdown one day lol. Oh, btw Pheramones, did Gymhotbod really call u a "M*****F*****R"??
Holy cow, how terrible...I thought he's changed his ways.
101. 2008-11-13 16:56  
Thio Li-Ann is a law prof at the National University of Singapore. She is most famed for delivering the most sexually graphic speech Singapore Parliament has ever heard to support the retention of gay sex law (Section 377).

She said last year: "Like many, I applaud the government's wisdom in keeping 377A which conserves what upholds the national interest. 'Conservative' here is not a dirty word connoting backwardness; environmental conservation protects our habitat; the moral ecology must be conserved to protect what is precious and sustains a dynamic, free and good society.

"The welfare of future generations depends on basing law on sound public philosophy. We should reject the 'argument from consent' as its philosophy is intellectually deficient and morally bankrupt.

"The real question today is not 'if' we should repeal 377A now, or wait until people are ready to move. This assumes too much, as though we need an adjustment period before the inevitable. The real question is not 'if' but 'should' we ever repeal 377A. It is not inevitable; it is not desirable to repeal it in any event.

"'Sexual minorities' and 'sexual orientation' are vague terms - covering anything from homosexuality, bestiality, incest, paedophilia - do all these minority sexual practices merit protection?

"Anal-penetrative sex is inherently damaging to the body and a misuse of organs, like shoving a straw up your nose to drink. The anus is designed to expel waste; when something is forcibly inserted into it, the muscles contract and cause tearing; fecal waste, viruses carried by sperm and blood thus congregate, with adverse health implications like 'gay bowel syndrome', anal cancer. 'Acts of gross indecency' under 377A also covers unhygienic practices like 'rimming' where the mouth comes into contact with the anus."

You can watch her on Youtube: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dpnEsmusV3Y
102. 2008-11-13 17:16  
Post #58 pheramones - "there is an almost patriotic duty to uphold Singapore's well-protected and narrow traditional values even if they, as homosexuals, are devalued by those traditions."

That sums it up so well.

I can understand why some guys take the moral high tone and this would be appropriate if we were discussing the punishment of a gay guy for flashing etc... but we are not. We are discussing the action of the authorities when the life of a gay man was savagely taken in contrast to the killing of str8 men in similar circumstances. That is the real issue, the actions of the gay man would only be relevant if the dispute was over should the men not be charged at all because they were justified in their attack, they were charged so they were not so entitled. The question is why not with homicide ?

Is religion a factor ? Of course because as pheramone points out social and moral sexual attitudes especially homophobic ones originate in religion particularly those from the Abrahamic-Judaic tradition. Perhaps those who follow any of these religions should remember the more promoted injunction - THOU SHALT NOT KILL. Referred to far more clearly and specifically in religious texts than thou shalt not have sex with men or even flash at them.
Comment #103 was deleted by its author
104. 2008-11-13 17:30  
Thio Li-Ann -
"Anal-penetrative sex is inherently damaging to the body and a misuse of organs, like shoving a straw up your nose to drink. ........ 'Acts of gross indecency' under 377A also covers unhygienic practices like 'rimming' where the mouth comes into contact with the anus."

Two problems with that -
1) Gross Indecency covers more than anal sex, it applies to ANY sexual activity between two men - oral, kissing masturbation. sexual acts which are practiced everyday by str9 people without fear of prosecution or of catching any of the exaggerated diseases/conditions she refers to.
2) Under the amendment passed a few years ago, anal sex is no longer illegal for str8 ppl, apparently they can risk all the awful diseases and conditions that anal sex allegedly leads to but not gay men. Obviously the authorities must "care" more about the health of so called sexual minorities then the poor heterosexual majority.

I'm sorry but what I choose to do with my body with another consenting adult is none of her damn business or the Governments.
105. 2008-11-13 17:38  
And for her and your, information the term "gay bowel syndrome" has been abandoned long ago as inappropriate.

It's correct term i giardia. It is treatable persistent diarrhea caused by a parasite, often caught in rimming, but also through other means like food/drink. It's one of the major causes of diarrhea amongst children in the US - hardly likely to be due to gay sexual activity.
106. 2008-11-13 17:51  
Ah, so that is. Thanks so much for the info Kellen.
Very graphic indeed..makes u wonder this much- how on earth does she know so MUCH about anal sex???? And anyone fr Singapore care to comment- are law professors there in general like Thio Li Ann?
If so, I can foresee why the above case has its intended outcome lol.
107. 2008-11-13 17:55  
And it's funny how Ms Thio's arguments applies only to sex between men. Because at the same time, anal (and oral) sex was legalised if the parties involved are a male and female...
108. 2008-11-13 17:59  
I've watched the youtube video, & something one of the commentators had written stuck me like lightning:

"Statistics show that 95% of females who took abstinence class wind up giving oral sex 2 yrs later"

109. 2008-11-13 18:54  
To post #51 'pheramones'
I think you were a bit unfair in your comment to 'seoulseeker' regarding him being only right on one point, and that it would be the only point he will ever be right on.

'seoulseeker' seems to be one the few who is a voice of reason and calm in the endless posts regarding this topic.

Only ONE point that you agree/or will ever agree with on what 'seoulseker' writes/has written ???

Maybe you should review that comment, and find a bit more graciousness.
110. 2008-11-13 19:33  
Hey guys, this anus stuff is way off topic. But I love it. When it comes to assholes, I can't hold back. That Thio woman is right when she says that the anus is designed to expel waste. But, o thank you Mother Nature, it's also designed for multi-tasking. Especially the male asshole. It has more nerve endings and blood vessels than female ones and these nerve endings only become activated and the blood vessels only become bloated during states of intense sexual excitement. The anus itself can with the right stimulation dilate to let something in. Just as it dilates through peristalsis to let something out. Don't wanna gross anybody out or embarrass the less well endowed but what comes out is often larger than the average size of what goes in. So our sweet little holes are much more, um, adjustable than Ms Thio would have us believe. And lodged inside is the prostate, one of the most powerful male erogenous zones and only available through penetration. One of nature's little surprises. (Sorry, GirlonGirl, you get a G-spot instead). When massaged it produces not only a very distinct sexual excitement but also explosive climaxes often with very enhanced sexual pleasure. And surprise surprise, it's not a gay thing. It's a male thing. If they can overcome the cultural taboos, straight guys also experience the same pleasure. Most learn accidentally from an exploratory finger during masturbation. Some graduate to persuading the girlfriend to wear a strap-on. A few bring in another guy for a 3some (although they'd throw up if they had to kiss the other guy). The thought of it makes me giggle but does anyone know if girl-on-guy strap-on sex is covered in the law?

And re post #66 jupiter101... hey i was just joking with him. don't take it so literally. it's called tongue-in-cheek humour. and he gives as good as he gets. and u're right, he is a very reasonable and intelligent guy. but don't let him know i said that, ok? :)
111. 2008-11-13 20:44  
Post #64 kellen - Hey, thks for sharing.
A great insight of the Singaporean (law) psyche.

Post #67 pheramones- hahaha thank u for the reminder. Have fun with yr,erm...sweet little Hole. But I think you'd have even more fun engaging in a debate with 'that Thio woman', it will be one helluva RIOT!!! lol
112. 2008-11-14 22:28  
Six guys beat up one gay flasher to death.

Three were less responsible in the death. How is this possible?

Isn't just standing there doing nothing or even cheering on the beating, instead of going to get someone to help or stepping in make you just as responsible?

I honestly can't think of this without having another name stuck in my head....Matthew Shepard.
113. 2008-11-17 09:29  
Aput, there is one minor difference btw Matthew Shephard and Suhaimi Sulong. That being the aggressiveness used by Suhaimi. I'm not even completely sure that Matt approached his killers in a sexual way, although they did use the "gay panic defense".

That said, NO ONE deserves to die for coming on to another person. There is NO excuse in my book for killing another person just because they come across as offensive in some way or another. And I think the penalty for killing someone should be much harsher than a few years and a few strokes of the cane (which many Americans consider a form of torture). I don't necessarily advocate the death penalty, and I don't even know if Malaysia has a death penalty on the books. But America does, and some in America would say that these young men who killed the flasher might even deserve death themselves for such a heinous crime.

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