Latest CNNGo.com "Say What? with mrbrown" column: mrbrown on the proper use of metaphors
The Youth Olympic Games (YOG) is finally over. Singaporeans can finally return to their lives and embrace the return of the center lane where drivers had to give way to YOG buses. It was not a smooth few weeks here. While we had highs like watching the Opening and Closing Ceremonies, cheering our Young Lions' heroic performance in the Under-15 football matches and seeing young Isabelle Li take the silver in table tennis, the YOG also made some people mad.
Take Abdul Malik Ghazali, for instance. This guy was so mad he posted very angry remarks on his Facebook page and an "I hate the Youth Olympic Games Organizing Committee" page that got him arrested on charges of "incitement of violence."
What did the fellow say? Well, his diatribe against the recent floods, a terrorist's escape and the money spent on the YOG ended with the sentence, "THIS IS THE TIME FOR US TO BURN VIVIEN BALAKRISHNAN AND THE PAP!!!!! RALLY TOGETHER AND VOTE THEM OUT!!!"
The police seem to have taken issue with his use of "burn" which he later said was a metaphor, not meant to be taken literally.
Personally, I think his only crime was typing in all caps and the overuse of exclamation marks (I suggest a month's community service for every unnecessary exclamation mark). You may even take him to task for misspelling the name of our Sports Minister (it's "Vivian" and not "Vivien", and he's a bloke). But I think anyone with half a brain will realize that in the context of what Mr Ghazali wrote, he was not inciting any violence or asking folks to set a minister on fire. (cont'd)