Pink Dot 2014 Ambassador Speech – Janice Koh
I’m standing up here today as a Pink Dot ambassador because I want to stand in solidarity with all my LGBTQ friends and family. Many of you are my childhood friends, my mates from school, fellow artists, collaborators and colleagues, my hair, make-up and fashion counsels, my close confidants, my trusted friends. I am not just your straight ally. You are part of my family, and I want to you to know that I love you, I support you, and I will always have your back
This is my commitment, and this is my choice.
There are some things in life we don’t have a lot of choice over.We can’t choose the colour of our skin. We can’t choose the family we are born into. We can’t choose to be tall or short, right or left-handed, just as how we can’t choose to be born male or female, gay or straight.
But I believe there are many things in life that we CAN choose.
We CAN choose to embrace and treat our fellow human beings, including our LGBTQ brothers and sisters, equally, and with kindness, dignity and respect.
We CAN choose to raise our children to be secure and confident in who they are, and to teach all our young ones to be compassionate and accepting of those who are different from them.
We CAN choose to be big-hearted and open-minded as a society, one where all Singaporeans – no matter our race, language, religion, sexual orientation or gender identity – can feel included and feel a part of this place we call home.
Let’s choose to listen instead of judge. Let’s choose to be one united people, instead of being divided. Let’s choose to open our hearts instead of closing our minds.
So, thank you, everyone, for choosing – for choosing to come here today to form this Pink Dot. Thank you to our LGBTQ brothers and sisters for standing up and being counted; to our straight friends, allies and families, for your support and solidarity; and most of all, to the organizing team and volunteers of Pink Dot for bringing us together in the spirit of love and celebration tonight.
Pink Dot is more than just about LGBTQ issues. It is special because it reminds us of our common humanity. It reminds us of the need to show compassion to our fellow man, which is the foundation of a plural and multicultural society like ours.
Change begins with each of us – it begins in the small places close to us – in our homes, in the streets where we live, in our schools, in our workplaces. Each and every one of you is an ambassador, in your own way, simply because you are here. So, from the bottom of my heart, thank you.