I am certain these two guys really did post racist material online that insulted alot of people and if found guilty, they deserve to be punished.
But does jailing them, for a possible maximum of 3 years, serve any good?
Because you might never know someone somewhere might take offense on what you wrote. Even you only write about infantile stuff.
What if you wrote about hello-kitty collectors and a horde of teenage girls clad in pink come howling at your door in cold blood?
Or What if you wrote in your blog you hate the taste of kimchee, and the Korean Embassy sends a complaint letter to your house.
There is no knowing the sensibilities of people. Because somewhere, someone's is going to disagree with you, no matter what your are talking about.
But of course there are some certainties. Religion and race are no-no.
But looking at how the law was written, I'm no legal-eagle, but I think almost anything blogged can be open to intepretation by the law.
At the end of the day, everyone and their mother, after reading the news, are scared because they think blogging might be dangerous, but few understand the big picture, that advocating racist views is dangerous on any medium.
The ultimate aim is to let these two guys understand the error of their ways, to know they are wrong and stupid. Not to appease everyone they offended by jailing them.
And what better way than to throw them together with other criminals who did 'real' crimes, like robbery, murder, manslaughter? So that they can exchange notes on breaking laws and get all chummy?
The worst thing you can do to a person who say and write the wrong things, is to jail them.End of the day, when they get out of jail, the same repugnant opinions still remain in their head. Nothing is changed.
Some re-education is in order, not in the Communist China/ Russian Gulag kind of way, but alot of conselling should/needs be done.
Instead of putting these two racists into the slammer, why not ask them to write public apology (as some has suggested) and also go for some mandatory counselling.
Let them tell Singapore: "We screwed up. We were extremely stupid to write racist material. We realise our mistake. Sorry." And make them do some mandatory Community Service.
Ultimately, laws should not put the fear of punishment into everyone, but to allow everyone to understand why the action is harmful to the society and why not to do it.
(I may be too naive about this. I know. One can only hope)
Why are the two racists called 'bloggers'? Sure one of them blogged about racist stuff, but another posted racist material in a forum. And with that,
CNA decided to called them bloggers? So being 50% accurate is good enough for CNA?
Why not calling a them racists, or internet users?
If a person pirates some MP3s on bittorrent and kena caught, but and also happen to blog, would he/she be labelled 'Blogger caught pirating Mp3s Online?"
What a way of spreading FUD!