Let Singaporeans express sentiments as they will

I read with interest Dr Lee Wei Ling's Facebook posts about the public commemorations for the first year of her father's death being excessive and bordering on hero worship, and criticising The Straits Times for not running her commentary on this.

I have a different view. This outpouring of emotion is welcome and natural, especially as it comes only a year since the death of our founding father, Mr Lee Kuan Yew.

In our own private lives, the first anniversary is always a special commemoration, so why not for a great leader who had devoted his entire life and more to his beloved country?

Let our sentiments flow naturally. Indeed, it would be wrong to muzzle our citizens' wishes in commemorating the first anniversary of his death the way that they would want to express it.


Will this result in a "cult of LKY" in Singapore? Definitely not.

Well, even the cult of Mao Zedong could not withstand the sweeping political, social and economic changes in China in the 1980s and thereafter.

So, we should embrace the natural flow of positive emotion for Mr Lee. We will never appreciate how well respected he is until we are living away from Singapore.

We are certainly proud that we are well respected because of what he and his team had done for Singapore.

Celine Goh (Mrs)

A Singaporean living in Brisbane, Australia

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on April 05, 2016, with the headline 'Let S'poreans express sentiments as they will'. Print Edition | Subscribe