Appeal to International Children Agencies to Denounce Political Persecution of Amos Yee

Appeal to International Children Agencies to Denounce Political Persecution of Amos Yee.

“On 29 March 2015, a 16-year-old boy Amos Yee was arrested and charged on 31 March 2015, just two days later, after he made a video which criticised the late first prime minister of Singapore, Lee Kuan Yew. Amos also spoke about the high income inequality in Singapore and attributed it to the first prime minister as well.

Amos was charged with three charges. For one of them, the first prime minister’s supporters said that the video “contained remarks about Mr Lee Kuan Yew which was intended to be heard and seen by persons likely to be distressed”.

More importantly, Amos was also charged as an adult in the State Court. He was not charged in the Juvenile Court for children.

After Amos was charged, he was put on bail for $20,000. The terms of his bail are excessive. He is not allowed to post, upload, distribute or by an other means cause to be made visible or available any comment or content, whether directly or indirectly, to any social media or online service or website.

In addition, he is now being held in remand, and has been in prison for four days now.

I would like to highlight that Singapore is a signatory to the Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC).

Under the convention, Singapore is required to look for other measures “without resorting to judicial proceedings,… such as care, guidance and supervision orders; counselling; probation; foster care; education and vocational training programmes and other alternatives to institutional care shall be available to ensure that children are dealt with in a manner appropriate to their well-being and proportionate both to their circumstances and the offence.”

However, after Amos was arrested, he was immediately charged. He was not given any other recourse.

On top of that, under the convention, Amos should have been “treated in a manner consistent with the promotion of the child’s sense of dignity and worth, which reinforces the child’s respect for the human rights and fundamental freedoms of others and which takes into account the child’s age and the desirability of promoting the child’s reintegration and the child’s assuming a constructive role in society.”

However, a blanket restriction was imposed on Amos’s freedom of speech and expression and he has been imprisoned for four days in jail now.”

It Begins With Three Books

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I grew up in a family without a father figure. My dad passed away when I was young. My mom worked at the office during the day. My oldest brother, only three years my senior, was essentially the dad in my life then. Of course, I had other dads too. They came in the forms of my uncles. My aunts were sometimes my mom, when I went to their homes to stay, during my school holidays or to wait after school.

So, I did not come from a one father, one mother, family upbringing. However, in my mind, for years, the picture in my head of a family, my definition of a family, was, a father, a mother, and two children, as prescribed and subscribed by our government, our schools, and our society then.

I remember being teased and yes, bullied, by friends for not having a father. Who could blame them? They did not know any better. Our government, our schools, and our society did not educate them any better.

And I always felt like I did not belong and out to place, in school or out of school. And I attributed everything that I was or was not, to the fact that I was a misfit. And one day, subconsciously, I assigned myself the label, that of a misfit and it became a determinant to many of the processes, events, and outcomes, that occurred in my life.

I think about the children today, who do come from “alternative” family types and which, do not “reflect society’s norm” of what a family should be. How much of an outcast they may think that they are and feel. The teasing and bullying they may receive as a result of peers who are not exposed to ideas of diverse family units. How damaging all these can be to a child’s developing self-concept; self-recognition, self-esteem, self-awareness, and self-definition. How the effects can impact in such detrimental ways in their adult lives. And because our government, our schools, and our society refuse to educate them any better, even today.

Now, the National Library Board, the one establishment that is supposed to furnish free resources with potential to extend knowledge, promote critical thinking, open minds, present different and alternative views and ideas, has decided that it would join our government, our schools, and our society, in limiting our children’s vast potential to learn about diversity, inclusivity, empathy, anti-bullying, and so much more, by deciding that it would censure any books in the children’s section which, do not reflect our society’s discriminatory and parochial definition of a family.

And hence, continues the trend of an exclusive and intolerant society and hurtful and hurt children.

234 Girls Kidnapped & Forced to Marry, While the World Does Nothing #BringBackOurGirls

234 Girls Kidnapped & Forced to Marry, While the World Does Nothing #BringBackOurGirls

By Wendy @ Families in the Loop

 

A Malaysian airliner carrying more than 200 passengers disappears. 26 countries come together, spending millions of dollars in an unprecedented search that continues today, almost two months later.

More than 200 black girls in Africa are kidnapped from school and sold into marriage for $12. And the world does nothing.

George Clooney gets engaged to Amal Alamuddin and we giggle and gossip, fascinated that the world’s ultimate bachelor is setting down with a brilliant and beautiful lawyer.

More than 200 black girls in Africa are kidnapped from school and sold into marriage for $12. And the world does nothing.

250 South Korean high school students drown or are presumed dead after a ferry badly listed. The New York Times posts article and after article about this horrific tragedy, with titles such as “A Korean City With 250 Holes in Its Heart.”

More than 200 black girls in Africa are kidnapped from school and sold into marriage for $12. And the world does nothing.

We discover the owner of the Los Angeles Clippers is racist and we are outraged on behalf of the rich and famous black basketball players who make millions to entertain us. We demand that Sterling resign.

More than 200 black girls in Africa are kidnapped from school and sold into marriage for $12. And the world does nothing.

I know we have busy lives. And I know we’re overwhelmed with all of the terrible injustices that take place across the world every day. But 234 girls have been kidnapped and allegedly sold for TWELVE DOLLARS.

We can’t simply stand by and let governments, international agencies and a distracted media ignore these girls. These are our girls. What if your daughter, your sister or your best friend had been kidnapped? Do we look away because these girls live far away?

Don’t look away. Do something. Share this on Facebook with the hashtag #BringBackOurGirls. Tweet this with the hashtag #BringBackOurGirls. Sign this petition to get our administration’s attention and sign this change.org petition too.

And share in the comments section below any other ideas or information you may have. Please. Let’s bring these girls home.

 

http://www.chicagonow.com/families-in-the-loop/2014/05/nigeria-girls-abucted-marriage/