Updated: Topless teenagers leave elite outraged, while killing red shirts is ignored

17 04 2011

If the endless reports and blogs are to be believed, a couple of teenagers getting their tops off during Songkhran revelries is an outrage. The Nation is just one of the outlets reporting the shock and horror experienced by the self-appointed guardians of what is proper and what is to be condemned.

The Nation reports that “Bangrak District Office director Surakiat Limcharern yesterday lodged a complaint with police over topless female Songkran revellers whose sexy dancing near Silom Road was recorded and posted on the Internet.” He opined that such displays hurt “the image of Thailand…”. Surakiat also “urged police to track down the teenagers who have carried out obscene acts in public places.”

He was joined in this outrage by National Police Commissioner General Wichien Potposri, who “vowed action against both the topless revellers and their cheering crowds.” (Oops, there’s that telltale cheering again.) And the Minister for Culture Nipit Intarasombat demanded “action taken against those lending loudspeakers and stereo systems for the topless dancing.” He threatened the girls with fines and required “cultural work.” Culture Watch Centre (yes, that’s the name) director “Ladda Tangsupachai yesterday disclosed that Nipit also instructed her to officially ask the National Police Office and the ICT Ministry to ban the video clips on the Internet.”

PPT expects this moral panic to continue for a while yet. Politicians must certainly chime in.

But a moment’s thought will confirm how horrid this reaction is. A few young women getting their tops off gets the elite upset. Killing red shirts around Songkhran (in 2009 and 2010) seems to bring cheers and joy for the elite. Where was the outrage from the elite when the army killed protesters? Perhaps this event will serve as a reminder of the lack of morality amongst the royalist elite….

Update: One of the interesting responses on the 5 minutes of topless dancing that we found interesting, pointed out by a regular reader, is this from the Public Relations Department:

The Ministry of Culture is preparing to issue handbooks campaigning for greater awareness of youngsters on the genuine value of Songkran Festival after inappropriate behaviors were spotted during the Thai New Year celebration.

This refers to the exposed breasts while dancing and a “similar incident” in Pichit province, where the topless dancers were transvestites.

The minister said … [it] is necessary to instil awareness of Thai culture among children and youths, he said. The ministry will soon issue handbooks to be distributed for that purpose.

Protecting public morals is a task that the conservative elite takes on when “protecting” the “institutions” of the old society, most notably the monarchy. The need for protection usually signals a demise.


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24 04 2011
Thailand: Outrage over topless teen dancing · Global Voices

[…] Prisoners in Thailand criticizes the “lack of morality among the elite” A few young women getting their tops off gets the elite upset. Killing red shirts around Songkhran […]

24 04 2011
Le Ciel et La Terre | Revue de presse | Thailand: Outrage over topless teen dancing

[…] where they were prone to sexual assault, surely.Political Prisoners in Thailand criticizes the “lack of morality among the elite”A few young women getting their tops off gets the elite upset. Killing red shirts around Songkhran […]

24 04 2011
Thailand: Outrage over topless teen dancing :: Elites TV

[…] Prisoners in Thailand criticizes the “lack of morality among the elite” A few young women getting their tops off gets the elite upset. Killing red shirts around Songkhran […]

24 04 2011
Thailand: Outrage over topless teen dancing @ Current Affairs

[…] Prisoners in Thailand criticizes the “lack of morality among the elite” A few young women getting their tops off gets the elite upset. Killing red shirts around Songkhran […]

24 04 2011
Nang Songkran by Thai Artist Sompop Budtarad | Women Learning Thai... and some men too ;-)

[…] pattayadailynews.com: Naked Dancers Performed in Songkran Celebrations thaipoliticalprisoners.com: Topless teenagers leave elite outraged, while killing red shirts is ignored prachatai.com: All bra none whatismatt.com: Thai-style […]

25 04 2011
Le Ciel et La Terre | Revue de presse | Thaïlande : Scandale pour des seins nus

[…] risquaient d'être violées, c'est évident.Political Prisoners in Thailand fustige le “manque de sens moral de l'élite”Quelques jeunes filles enlèvent leur haut, et l'élite est scandalisée. Tuer des Chemises […]

26 04 2011
Thailand: Outrage Over Topless Teen Dancing | The Global Citizen

[…] Prisoners in Thailand criticizes the “lack of morality among the elite” A few young women getting their tops off gets the elite upset. Killing red shirts around Songkhran […]

30 04 2011
Tajland: Sramota zbog tinejdžerki koje su plesale u toplesu · Global Voices na srpskom

[…] zatvorenici u Tajlandu kritikuju „nedostatak morala među elitom”: Nekoliko mladih devojaka je obnažilo grudi i time uznemirilo elitu. Ubijanje Crvenih košulja […]

21 05 2011
Ταϊλάνδη: Σάλος για τις γυμνόστηθες χορεύτριες · Global Voices στα Ελληνικά

[…] (Πολιτικοί Φυλακισμένοι στην Ταϊλάνδη) ασκεί κριτική “στην έλλειψη ηθικής της ελίτ”: A few young women getting their tops off gets the elite upset. Killing red shirts around Songkhran […]