Select Committee studying fake news should also look into false beliefs

I strongly suggest that the war against falsehoods perpetuated online be extended to include false religious beliefs and practices which could incite social unrest and turmoil (Select Committee proposed to look into fake news threat, Jan 6; and Preaching by radical clerics must be countered effectively, by Mr Nordin Amat, Dec 15, 2017).

In line with the Green Paper's vision of preventing the dissemination of deliberate falsehoods which attack the very heart of democracy, the public needs to be warned that sharing or supporting any false belief, such as achieving paradise through suicide bombings, will be construed as inciting such heinous acts.

Another example of a deeply entrenched belief among Muslims is that involving dogs.

Perhaps the Islamic Religious Council of Singapore (Muis) could clarify its views and give more coverage to new findings during Friday sermons and religious classes on respecting our neighbours and not hurting their feelings by despising their pet dogs.

In addition, any unsubstantiated news linking religious beliefs to terrorist acts should be refuted and retracted to prevent backlash by people of other faiths.

Nordin Amat

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on January 08, 2018, with the headline 'Select Committee studying fake news should also look into false beliefs'. Print Edition | Subscribe