Sunday, December 7, 2008

DBS and FotF redux

The Straits Times carried a story today on how DBS's tie-up with Focus on the Family drew flak. DBS has since reworded their advertisements and withdrawn the promotion. Apparently, sufficiently large numbers of people were unhappy enough to make their displeasure known.

I ranted wrote about DBS's tie-up with FotF a few weeks ago.

Apparently, it did not go unnoticed, and was posted by someone on content aggregator This in turn caused a massive spike in traffic to my website over the weekend it was posted. So in my own way, I think I did my little part in publicising this example of DBS's dalliance with an organisation of dubious provenance. Perhaps they will be more discriminating in the future of who they get in bed with.

And as for that rejoinder from FotF (Singapore)'s president, " 'We are deeply concerned that a small group of activists has successfully intimidated a major financial institution like DBS in such an unwarranted fashion that maligns a well-intended collaboration for the cause of children and families.' Focus on the Family Singapore's president Joanna Koh-Hoe", my take is very simple.

I am all for families and children, especially the less privileged in our highly unequal society. I just prefer that the businesses I patronize contribute to secular charities, and failing that, at least to charities that do not fall under the charter of organisations as controversial as FotF, or charities which are not as freighted with religious/moralistic overtones. Certainly, I have no desire for my consumer dollars to be channelled to an organisation with an ... what is that word, agenda.

I have to hand it to Joanna Koh-Hoe though. Her press statement was perfect; she must be a lawyer in her day job. It struck just the right balance of "deep concern" for how interloping activists had hijacked her organisation's mission (is anyone safe from those disgusting prurient g*ys?), of how a major financial institution had been "intimidated" (shame on you DBS!), and how "unwarranted" (cue hand wringing) an attack on her organisation's "well-intended" efforts for (suffer the little) children.

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