The Yim Pek Ha case brought another case to mind. In 1998 I know this woman "Susie Wong" - also a Malaysian - who was jailed for hitting her maid in Singapore.
Did you hear me? I KNOW this woman. Yeah. Susie was also Chinese but this does not mean that all Chinese people are sadists. Just so happens I know THIS chinese. So NO racial bashing please.
If you have any cow sense, you would know that Good & Bad comes in all shapes & colors.
To continue. I know "Susie" from helping Jenny, my neighbour rent out her apartment & Susie was the tenant I picked out on her behalf, seeing as Jenny was not around & Susie was the 1st "decent-looking" person to answer the ad.
You may wonder if Susie looked "normal"
No she did not look "normal".
Susie was exceptionally well groomed, well spoken & looked like she won't skip the rent - which was more Jenny's concern as a landlady. Susie looked too great to be "normal". So Susie moved in with 2 young adult kids, 2 dogs & a maid. She paid her bills promptly.
However after 1 yr, Jenny asked Susie to leave her apartment as she was posted home & needed her apartment back.
Now the maid story. 1 year after Susie moved out, Jenny my neighbour called me at work & told me the police was looking for me. ME? About Susie. So I turned up at the police station & they asked me
Did I hear anything like screams from Susie's apartment when she was living there. No
Did I see the maid? Not really
How do you know there's a maid?
I saw a woman, dressed like a maid (in fact, she was dressed like any of us - shapeless tees, ugly shorts) who is definitely not Susie - hanging out clothes. washing Susie's car, walking the dogs
So she was allowed to leave the apartment? Yes. If not how can she clean the car which is downstairs in the open public car park & walk the dogs?
Did you ever see her alone in the public? Yes. In the open public car park & walking towards the Botanic Gardens which is next door to us
Did you see the maid talking to anyone else? Sort of. She talked to the guards at the gate, other maids minding kids. Yes
Do you think Susie behaved, & acted normal?
Yes. She didn't do anything crazy like dance naked in the car park. She came in & out - normally. Oh yes. Except for her bizarre clothing - or the lack of clothes & the overexposure of her body.
(The police officers glared at me but I was only speaking the truth)
Then they told me. Turns out Susie was arrested for hitting the maid with a red hot scoop. I freaked out. FREAKED OUT. When? This month. I sorta went "whew" because Susie had already left our place 1 yr ago.
Because had I known, were I aware - that Susie was beating the maid, what would I have done? Call the Police? Bashed the door & Susie down?
I still do not understand to this day, why when the maid was being beaten, she did not go to someone for help. Or to a nearby police station.
If you know Singapore well, you would know a police station is never far away. Plus. We are all living almost 1 on top of another - so how is it possible nobody heard or saw anything?
Susie was eventually acquited of hitting the maid with a hot metal scoop but was jailed 2 weeks for slapping the maid twice on the face. Is that too little punishment? Again if you know Singapore, you would know they are more strict than lenient, and out to make an example for everyone to see.
But things happen for a reason. This incident has made everyone I know super vigilant of the 2-way street in life.
One hears of gila maids as well as gila employers. Everyone deserves Respect & Courtesy.
Because if there were choices in life, nobody would choose to be a maid.
Because if we can trust a stranger to run our homes, care for our loved ones, & sleep with us under the same roof, we MUST trust, respect & treat them with courtesy.
Works the same way for the maids too. Except they are the lonely ones. They are the ones without family & friends' support.
God Help us All to Be Kinder & More Patient