Archive for the 'Features (Singapore)' Category

New Paper: “I’d rather die as an ugly man than a handsome woman”

The New Paper
Print edition: Sunday 27 Sept 2009
Online edition: 28 Sept 2009

‘I’d rather die as an ugly man than a handsome woman’
Female-born transsexuals speak up at first-ever forum that addresses their plight

By Benson Ang

Jack (not his real name) was born more of a Jill.

Only last month did he and three others summon enough courage to tell their story at an open forum.

The forum, the first of its kind, was organised by SgButterfly, a group for transsexuals here. Continue reading ‘New Paper: “I’d rather die as an ugly man than a handsome woman”’

Homophobia is not just another point of view

It has been a couple of weeks since the Thio-NYU incident and I think I’ve finally figured out why it has been bothering me so much. It’s not as if homophobia and other forms of intolerance don’t already irk me enough, but for some reason, just something about Dr Thio Li-ann’s cool response to the reactions of the law school’s LBGT organization to her anti gay stance, including an open letter from NYU student Jim McCurley (reproduced here), gave me a fortnight-long sense of unease.

It wasn’t the fact that Dr Thio’s response seemed so calm and almost reasonable, so unlike her crass and tactless description of anal sex as “shoving a straw up your nose to drink” while arguing against the decriminalization of gay sex in Singapore. I did not assume for one second that she would present herself as anything less than professional in her capacity as a Professor, and especially to a more liberal audience such as NYU. It wasn’t even the irony that her course is about “Human Rights in Asia”, a topic that many have questioned about whether she is qualified to teach, given her failure to recognize the rights of homosexuals.

Continue reading…

TNP: Celebrity sex ed

2 June 2009
The New Paper

Celebrity Sex Ed

By Kwok Kar Peng

ACTOR Adrian Pang isn’t one of those parents who shies away from talking about sex with his children.

Whether it’s how to use a condom, sexually-transmitted diseases (STDs) or homosexuality, the 43-year-old father of two does not believe in beating about the bush when it comes to the birds and the bees.

His sons, Zachary and Xander, are 10 and 9. Adrian said he first spoke to Zachary about sex when the boy was just 6 because he did not want the topic to be shrouded in mystery. Continue reading ‘TNP: Celebrity sex ed’



By Ng Wan Ching

May 31, 2009

By most accounts, Anna (not her real name) is an intelligent student. She scored mostly As and Bs throughout her school years.

But ask her whether there’s sperm in pre-ejaculate (which is produced when a man is aroused) and she’s stumped.

‘Er, no?’ she said.

She’s wrong and she isn’t the only one.

Amid all the buzz about sexual education programmes in schools and what is appropriate to be taught, a study has found ‘worrying’ gaps in the knowledge of even post-secondary students. Continue reading ‘TNP: CONTRACEPTION: S’PORE STYLE’

ST Lydia Lim: Learn to live with diversity

24 May 2009
Sunday Times

Learn to live with diversity
A sense of common good should prevail, whatever our differences

By Lydia Lim, Senior Political Correspondent

ENTREPRENEUR and innovation guru Guy Kawasaki once criticised Singapore as an one-opinion town.

His precise words were: Israel has five million people, six million entrepreneurs, and fifteen million opinions. Singapore has five million people, six entrepreneurs, and one opinion. Continue reading ‘ST Lydia Lim: Learn to live with diversity’

TOC: A thousand gather to celebrate diversity and the freedom to love


Sunday, 17 May 2009, 12:22 pm

Videographer: Mervin Lee / Interviewers: Teng Jing Wei and Vicky Yang

Koh Yina / Tng Ying Hui

The overcast sky did not hamper the exuberance of the crowd at Hong Lim Park yesterday. They were gathered for one purpose – in support of is about supporting the freedom of the LGBT in Singapore to love. This historical moment aims to promote an inclusive society for all, regardless of sexual orientation.  Many were dressed in pink, regardless whether they were homosexuals or not and they were there to express themselves freely about the right to love. Continue reading ‘TOC: A thousand gather to celebrate diversity and the freedom to love’

TimesAsia: Boys Night Out



By JEN WEI TING Singapore


We’re here. We’re queer. Get used to it. Can Singapore accept its gay community?

Anything goes at Taboo. As your eyes get used to the dim blue lighting, you catch silhouettes of couples kissing, touching, and necking openly, both on and off the dance floor. The first surprise is that almost all the patrons are male. Surprise No. 2—are you sitting down?—is that this is in Singapore.

Yes, that most uptight of Asian countries has a surprisingly lively gay scene. Taboo is one of three nightclubs in the Tanjong Pagar suburb that has a large homosexual clientele. At the two 24-hour coffee shops, it’s not unusual to see flamboyantly attired drag queens enjoying a late night snack. By day, the cafE at the Borders bookstore downtown is a popular gay hangout. Those who prefer to stay in the closet can find refuge in numerous websites and Internet chat groups run by local gay activists. “Singapore is probably the safest place to live in Asia now”, says Shen, a gay playwright. Continue reading ‘TimesAsia: Boys Night Out’