Reference: Get tough stand could spur more mayhem, Bangkok Post, April 13, 2009
We hope the government is reading your insightful analysis of a get tough policy (Get tough stand could spur more mayhem, Bangkok Post, April 13, 2009). Whether we agree or disagree with them there is no doubt that the red shirts are a reality in Thailand's political landscape. The way out is to negotiate a compromise. The compromise might include for example the departure of Abhisit, the selection of a new prime minster from the ruling coalition, and a timetable for elections. We might also consider designing and implementing a formalized mechanism other than violent street protests through which civil society can get involved in some kind of participative democracy. What happened in Pattaya did not shame the country. It showed the world that Thailand is a place where people are free to protest against their government without the risk of being labeled as insane and thrown into mental institutions. There is a lesson in democracy here for delegates from places like Burma and China.