I don’t know why there are so many Singaporeans crying foul over this video. After viewing it, I thought it was fair comment. If these celebrities think our English sucks and theirs is better, so be it – they are entitled to hold their own beliefs, however flawed it might be.
Equally derogatory: there are many Singapore variety shows I have seen making fun of the way Indian and Chinese nationals speak English. The latest movie by Jack Neo, Ah Long Pte Ltd also poked fun of Malaysian accented English.
These are all entertainment programs pandering to local tastes – cut them some slack lah… they are not public service announcement. If Chen Shui Bian was the one on the program criticising our English, that’s another issue altogether.
While we are quick to criticise, we are also slow to introspect.
The way I see it, there’s no such thing as “pure English”. Yes, seriously. Not even in it’s supposedly country of origin, England.
English is used widely across the world as a universal working language. As a result, many pidgin forms will evolve when it is used in mixture with native languages, requiring constant code switching.
It is this reason that the Singapore government will never be able to eradicate Singlish; despite the millions spent on the Speak Good English Campaign all these years.
Anyway, Arroy Shen and the Taiwan English teacher whom had bear the brunt of the criticism from angry Singaporeans have both apologised on their blog. You can read it yourself on their blogs: