This past year, a 17-year-old boy named Amos Yee has been in the media spotlight both in Singapore and around the world for posting salient critiques of a former prime minister of Singapore and the problems of lack of political freedom and free speech, high income inequality and so on in the country. Amos’ brave confrontation with the political hegemony of Singapore can be said to be parallel to the biblical narrative of the 17-year-old David challenging the bullying giant Goliath.
Not surprisingly, there are mainly two camps in response to his posts: those who rally around him as his posts echo their sentiments that they have always wanted to express and those who would rather side with the oppressing system to maintain their status quo and try to bring him down with derogatory remarks. Below is a screenshot of a typical response by someone in the latter camp.
If there is anything that befits the description of a modern day Pharisee, the above comment or diatribe by Daphne Chao (which is most probably a fictitious name based on a fake Facebook account) would be something that a self-righteous, holier-than-thou person would say. It is full of vitriol and venom, which brings to mind how Jesus addressed the Pharisees as “you brood of vipers” and “you snakes”.
The way Daphne tried to cut Amos down to size by looking down on his young age and calling him as “loser” shows that Daphne has been utterly indoctrinated by the evil system of meritocracy. As this blog explains, “the meritocratic system is fundamentally flawed, as it debases and degrades humanity… (it) may have only succeeded in churning out people who are brought up to toe the line and conform to the system, which seeks to control them with material ‘carrots and sticks’ based on their performance or willingness to obey and submit to ‘authority’, instead of listening to and following their heart/intuition to bring about justice and equality in the world for the betterment of humanity and the environment.”
Furthermore, Jesus himself said, “”I praise you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, because you have hidden these things from the wise and learned, and revealed them to little children.” It is likely to be a reference to Psalm 8:2 – “Out of the mouth of babes and nursing infants You have ordained strength”. Indeed, it takes a new, young generation to dare to step up the platform and boldly address the hypocrisy and injustice that they have seen in the oppressive system.
Amos is like the prophet John the Baptist whose voice cries out in the wilderness for justice and equality, and as Jesus himself prophesised, “”A prophet is honored everywhere except in his own hometown and among his relatives and his own family.”