Archive Page 2

‘Strange bedfellows’ in SDP team

Sunday Times
24 April 2011

‘Strange bedfellows’ in SDP team
Vivian takes on Chee’s party, hinting of a possible expose over YouTube video
By Judith Tan and Amresh Gunasingham

Dr Vivian Balakrishnan yesterday described the Singapore Democratic Party (SDP) team running against him as ‘strange bedfellows’ who do not have a shared vision or ideology.

Dismissing accusations by SDP candidate Tan Jee Say that the People’s Action Party had ‘lost its moral compass’, he turned the spotlight back onto the SDP instead.

In an interview with The Sunday Times, he said: ‘It has been brought to my attention – in fact it is the SDP which is suppressing a certain YouTube video, which raises some very awkward questions about the agenda and motivations of the SDP and its candidates.’

Continue reading ‘‘Strange bedfellows’ in SDP team’


Vivian Balakrishnan says SDP will have to come out of the closet

Straits Times
20 April 2011

For all of us, it is a very heavy responsibility. Our residents’ livelihoods, families and homes are at stake. As far as the effort itself, my overriding imperative is not to let the voters, volunteers and my team-mates down. I am not sure what (the Singapore Democratic Party’s) strategy is. I would like to know whether they have confirmed that they are contesting, I would like to know their line-up. I can’t help feeling that part of the reason for their reticence is they have elements of their agenda they are not prepared to disclose and subject to scrutiny. Eventually, they will have to come out of the closet.

I see a total lack of a plan. Even at national level, I am still waiting for their manifesto. But if you base it on what we have seen so far, it is fair to say that the SDP, as far as policy is concerned, is the most extreme of all the opposition parties. It is an incoherent set of populist calls. And all I can do is to agree with Mr Chiam See Tong’s assessment that they have not changed. Their philosophy, their policies and their approach have not changed.

Minister for Community Development, Youth and Sports Vivian Balakrishnan on anchoring the Holland-Bukit Timah GRC team for the first time

Pink Everest: Nepal appeals for gay tourists


By RAVI NESSMAN (AP) – 2 days ago

KATMANDU, Nepal — Nepal wants to paint Mount Everest pink.

It wants gay honeymooners trekking through the Himalayas.

It wants to host the world’s highest same-sex wedding at Everest base camp.

But mainly, the conservative Hindu nation wants a chunk of the multibillion dollar gay tourist market to help pull it out of poverty.

That quest — brushing aside historical biases in pursuit of economic opportunity — is symbolic of one of the gay rights movement’s most stunning successes.

Just five years ago, police were beating gays and transsexuals in the streets. Continue reading ‘Pink Everest: Nepal appeals for gay tourists’

CNA: Medifund to be extended for HIV treatment from February


By Claire Huang, Channel NewsAsia

Posted: 15 January 2010 2040 hrs

SINGAPORE: Medifund will be extended to Singaporeans who require HIV treatment from next month onwards.

The Ministry of Health (MOH) said it will pump in another S$8.5 million to the fund to help the needy.

From April 2008 to March 2009, MOH had distributed S$73.7 million in Medifund grants to institutions – including some S$59 million that was channelled to needy patients.

Needy Singaporeans have been using Medifund for treatments like nursing home care and kidney transplants, and from next month they can use it to pay for HIV treatment. Continue reading ‘CNA: Medifund to be extended for HIV treatment from February’

Homosexual selection: The power of same-sex liaisons


07 December 2009 by Kate Douglas

NOT long ago, the news was full of reports about two male Humboldt penguins at a zoo in Germany that adopted an egg, hatched it and reared the chick together. It seems like every time you turn around, the media spotlight has fallen on another example of same-sex liaisons in the animal kingdom.

In the past few years, the ubiquity of such behaviour has become apparent. This summer evolutionary biologists Marlene Zuk and Nathan Bailey from the University of California, Riverside, published a paper on the subject that included examples from dozens of species ranging from dung flies and woodpeckers to bison and macaques.

That is just the beginning of the story. The burning question is why same-sex behaviour would evolve at all when it runs counter to evolutionary principles. But does it? In fact there are many good reasons for same-sex sexual behaviour. What’s more, Zuk and Bailey suggest that in a species where it is common, it is an important driving force in evolution. Continue reading ‘Homosexual selection: The power of same-sex liaisons’

“Traditional” Marriage or a Break with Tradition?


By Stephanie Coontz
June 30, 2008

The recent California court ruling in favor of same-sex marriage has elicited a new round of warnings about the threats to “traditional” marriage. Marriage, say foes of the ruling, has always been a union of one man and one woman, with procreation as its central purpose. And Christianity in particular has historically surrounded marriage with sacred ceremonies, reserved for those who understand its solemn meaning, they contend. Compelling either church or state to accept the validity of same-sex unions would force these institutions, in defiance of tradition, to condone marriages of which they disapprove.

Continue reading ‘“Traditional” Marriage or a Break with Tradition?’

The Sexual Threat to Fundamentalism


By Michelle Goldberg
December 29, 2008

During this holiday season—a time, ideally, of peace, empathy, kindness and transcendence—gays and lesbians have reason to feel themselves under siege by ostensible men of God. First there was the Rick Warren affair, with its concomitant message that, unlike racism or anti-Semitism, gay and lesbian equality is something decent people can disagree on. Then, just days later, in his Christmas greeting to the Roman Curia, the Pope saw fit to compare homosexuality—and, indeed, any deviation from binary gender roles—to the destruction of the rainforests. Continue reading ‘The Sexual Threat to Fundamentalism’