When I was an undergraduate reading English (yup, in my day, studying for a degree was called “reading”), the worst insult one could throw at anyone was to accuse him/her of having “middle-class” morality.
This came to mind on hearing the sudden and unexpected news that our Speaker (now ex) of Parliament, Mr Michael Palmer, had an affair with a staff (now also ex) of the People’s Association and resigned as Member of Parliament and Speaker of the House.
(As if he would have been allowed by his party to stay on, if he had said: “no, babe, I’m staying” — but that’s another story).
Rather the current story is that Singapore, despite all its efforts to remake itself into a fun, cool place (sex toy shops, brothels, casinos, same sex couples publicly holding hands, men dressed as women and vice versa and no one blinks an eye etc etc), there is a schizophrenic core.
Those in power and those aspiring to get into power remain very much like Victorian shop keepers with middle class morality!
I felt the same indignation when Mr Yaw Shin Leong ex-Workers Party treasurer was booted out by his party as I stated unequivocally here.
IMHO, if a highly placed person — man or woman — is a “player” (a la my Korean drama lingo), it shouldn’t matter, unless and until it’s been proven that the playing affects the job held; the playing leads to favouritism for the playee involved, the playee/s isn’t/aren’t old enough to be consensual in the play and last but not least, the playing is done publicly on inappropriate occasions such as the high official having a woman or man in either arm at an Istana party or horrors (!!) at the National Day Rally or Parade.
With such exceptions, we should really devour some French insouciance washed down by my favorite bubbly, Veut Clicquot 🙄
Go take a look at what two-term French president Mitterand did all the while he was president! 🙄
And take a gander at current French president Hollande’s private life! My goodness, he not only had affairs but had one so long lasting that it resulted in four children!
Now, if Mr Hollande were to pay a state visit to Singapore, I wonder if he would be given a ceremonial welcome? Or should we say no?
After all, if we can’t stomach having a Head of the House who dallied with a woman not his wife, can we as a nation with good conscience lay out the red carpet for a man who obviously can’t meet the high morals which Singapore places on our nationally elected leaders!