The fight never ends

Singapore, 2016. © 2016 Callan Tham. All rights reserved.

These were the expressions that I and many friends had when last Wednesday came to an end—a helpless despair that was hard to quantify and even harder to accept. Granted, I’m not a US citizen, and we have our own challenges here in Singapore—the PAP government has announced, in an about-face that is damningly hypocritical even looked in its most favourable light, that our next Elected Presidency will be “reserved” for the Malays—the result represents a most disappointing and even depressing outcome.

I do not usually talk about politics here, as I speak about it all the time with friends, but I am under no illusions about politics being an everyday fact of life; it permeates everything, shapes psyche and discussion, and even societal norms on the whole. The aftermath of that disastrous result in the US have shown us that, if the results of Brexit earlier in the year have not yet made that abundantly clear.

Words have consequences. Rhetoric is hardly ever empty. And the work that any creatives do are no exception—we are supposed to challenge the comfortable perspective, subvert conventions. The work is hardly ever devoid of commentary, no matter how much we try. But therein lies the solution, for me, in that the only way, or at least, the best way for me to deal with situations like these is to keep working. That is our sole responsibility as creatives, to keep plugging away, and in our own little spheres of influence, shape realities. Anything else is folly.

Channel that rage if you feel it. Do something about it. If that is, as Neil Gaiman puts it, “making art”, then get out there and do so. That’s all the politics you’ll find on this particular blog. I may write about it on another, and I’ve been thinking about doing that for a while (back to a previous life, as it were), but only when I’m ready.

The work begins anew. The fight never ends.

Using Format