Facebook netter Joel Tan published a post on 23 Nov 2018 with a picture of a Chinese man in a racial drag. He claimed that the photo came from a "source" who continued to describe what the man did in the drag. Tan accuses the man for doing a racist caricature.

Read below for his full post:

"This photo was sent to me from a source who describes recent Deepavali celebrations at Sports SG. The man in the turban is apparently a pretty high up officer. On top of the racial drag, the source also describes head shaking, random bursts of Tamil, and the handing out of kacang puteh during the celebrations. Let's call this what it is: racist caricature.

People like to think racism doesn't exist in Singapore, but it really does. Not even badly disguised racism: just flat out, balls to the wall insensitivity and grotesque tone-deafness. This is what happens when we collectively agree that "race" is not a Singaporean concept. Or that our multi-racial harmony is well and alive because we don't talk about race, don't acknowledge the racist behaviour of Chinese people, and dismiss those who call out this kind of behaviour as snowflakes, shit-stirrers, and 'racists' themselves. Seriously we Chinese Singaporeans are some of the most consistently racist, racism-denying, and racism-defending people I've ever met.

Also this specific genre of race performance needs to end: why is this caricature of Sikh men so specifically hilarious to Chinese people? In 2015 I remember calling out MediaCorp actor Desmond Tan for posting a photo of himself in a turban and egregious blackface wishing his fans happy Deepavali. Also the numerous times I've seen this "character" played out badly by Chinese actors on local comedy stages. The impersonation is always clownish, ridiculing, belittling. 

Please nobody come to me saying their intentions were good and this was good natured fun in the spirit of cross cultural exchange; or that it's an act of endearment. And please let's take a good hard look at this photo and try to square it with the society we think we live in."
Is this really an act of racism? Should the man have been more sensitive toward those from other races? What do you think?

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