If recent comments over at New Mandala are representative examples of thinking in Thailand, then all I can say is God help Thailand!
Samun Praram // Feb 12, 2009 at 3:50 pm
If we talk about the principle of Universal Human Right…then don’t you think the Thais have the rights to respect and revere their King and uphold the law, in which the country sees is best for them.
What most people in the west think is that the 65 million people in Thailand are so backward because their laws restrict them from what many in the west think is the rights everyone should have. But we’re ignoring the fact that this may be what they want to believe in. This maybe something that is important to them. Surely, they have the right to think and decide for themselves.
Sometimes we have to look beyond our belief, judgment and society and stop imposing that we think is right on other people. It is right that everyone should have the rights to basic rights and needs, freedom of speech, etc, but think about it…is there really such a thing as a Universal Human Rights?
I think we need to be more open-minded when we travel to other countries and respect the law. Taking action in what we believe in is a good thing, but respecting others’ beliefs and culture is also appropriate when you’re on ther others’ soil. We should ask ourelves…are we doing this because these people are being deprived of thier rights and need our help or are we doing this because we think we are more superior…we are right and they are wrong?
Jesse // Feb 12, 2009 at 11:46 am
Every country, there are rules that we do not agree, however, you must follow the law in the particular country you are in.
He is well awared of the consequences and yet he chose to do it. No matter how many copies the book’d sold, he still broke the law in the kingdom of Thailand !
Maitri // Feb 13, 2009 at 3:52 am
God help Thailand is people like Red Giles ever take power. We can look to our east or west to see what socialism does to any country that adopts this sickening ideology. Left-wing Westernizers like Giles, Taksin, and all their cohorts have lost touch with what it means to be a Thai. They would be more at home in Hollywood than in Bangkok.
Thailand is a Buddhist and the Thai people will never adopt the ideas of Giles Ungpakor with his advocacy of abortion, republicanism, and surrender to the Muslims of the south. Instead, we should return to what we are: the natural order of Thai civilization.
Look at Russia, After suffering under 70 years of Socialism, they are now returning to their historic and religious roots. We Thais should do the same. It is past time to undo the tragedy of 1932 and, once again, become officially the Buddhist Kingdom of Siam, wherein we can find the true spirit of being Thai.
None of the above posters may even be Thai (Jesse especially), but unfortunately those viewpoints do not seem uncommon.
IMO, these views are much more dangerous than those of Giles - You only have to look as far as Sri Lanka to see the outcome of ignoring human rights and trying to establish a Buddhist state!