When I was living in Singapore 13 years ago, the government was debating a decision that in other countries might have seemed rather trivial: whether or not to permit a version of Speakers’ Corner, the spot in London’s Hyde Park where individuals vent their opinions on whatever topic they choose to whoever wants to listen.
The year before, the then-Prime Minister Goh Chok Tong had worried that his country was not ready for such an innovation. But in September 2000 a location was finally approved, in Hong Lim Park, near the city centre.
Being Singapore, this “free speech forum” was a regulated one. Speakers needed police permission before they could use the space. [Read the full article]