To counter the shameful crap that has populated the #LittleIndiaRiot hashtag, here are a couple of things worth reading:
“When I made the Sexy Island documentary, one episode was on foreigners. I played an impromptu game of cricket with some Indians on a patch of grass in the shadow of the SportsHub that they were building (not mocking it, ridiculing it, dismissing it, I might add, but actually building the bloody thing.) They said they were proud to be building a new city landmark. Some Bangladeshi workers gave me a tour around “Bangladeshi Corner” (within Little India, near Mustafa, but proudly distinct).
Two of the workers had lost their jobs after falling off shoddy scaffolding. They limped in some discomfort. Their employers refused to pay, saying the accident resulted from their incompetence. They couldn’t pay their medical bills. Building site pals were chipping in and they were relying on human rights/voluntary organisations to fight their case. They were sleeping on friends’ floors and eating cheap meals as Samaritans fought their case on their behalf. We couldn’t use the footage about their case because it was considered too sensitive and we couldn’t corroborate in time.
Throughout our brief tour, they proudly showed off run-down coffee shops, provision shops and hangouts that most folks wouldn’t go anywhere near. I asked them: If they had a choice (and money), where would they go? No bullshit. They picked Singapore. They were underpaid, overworked, injured and ripped off by unscrupulous employers. They still wanted to make Singapore their home.”
“That violent “Bangla” last night throwing fruit at paramedics? He may have been the Town Council cleaner cleaning up the trash in our neighbourhood so pests don’t overrun our precious HDB flats and bring disease to our family.
Maybe that destructive “ABNN” who last night flipped over and damaged SCDF vehicles could be that friendly grasscutter clearing overgrown fields so that mosquitoes don’t breed and cause dengue to our loved ones.
That angry alcohol-fuelled “foreign trash” who joined his compatriots in a mob last night could have been that smiling hawker center cleaner making sure our plates cleared and the spaces clean so we can eat in peace and not get food poisoning.
Or that “orh-lang” who smashed the windscreen of the private bus could be that hardworking electrician working at the nearby construction site putting his skills to making sure the wiring in that flashy upcoming condo won’t end up electrocuting our elderly. And that our future generations have a new place to live.
Perhaps that “ah-neh” who threatened the sanctity and peace in our beautiful city last night was just the day before sweeping up our roads so no stray pebble thrown up by a speeding car hits and damages the windscreen of our car or worse, hits and injures a passerby – maybe our young ones.
But no. Some of us are calling for these people to be sent back to where they come from, because they “threaten our safety”.
If only we knew what they mean for our safety.”
And check out the FB page: Behind The Borders, Behind The Men