On 24 May, news reports stated Parliament Speaker Chuan Leekpai reprimanded a certain assistant to a certain minister. Why? It’s because our time-honored privilege/seniority/inequality/bully culture struck again.
This certain assistant bullied a medical staff at parliament. With mean words and aggressive hand gestures, the assistant attempted to cut the queue to receive the COVID-19 vaccination.
By what right did the assistant believe he could cut the queue? By the right of privilege in a system of seniority/inequality uphold by the feudal patronage culture.
On 25 May, the minister to the Prime Minister Office and Palang Praharat Party’s Anucha Nakasai told the press with vengeance and venom.
“I will cut out his mouth!”
He wasn’t referring to Speaker Chuan, but his assistant alleged in the controversy.
“If true, I will make him kowtow at the feet to apologize!”
But of course, he said the allegation isn’t true and is spread by those with ill intentions. He vowed to give away five months’ worth of salary to anyone who can discover the truth.
If the incident is true, then dismissing the assistant would be the right, responsible, and democratic thing to do. But threatening to cut out his mouth and force him to kowtow at the feet? Evidently, the assistant takes after his boss in attitude and mindset.
Obviously, no one’s mouth will be cut out. But forced to kowtow at the feet? Well, it’s a time-honored tradition.
When our beloved Thailand’s time-honored privilege/seniority/inequality/bully mindset strikes, it’s never an isolated incidence. It’s a reflection of the prevailing culture that champions the privileges of the powerful over the rights of the people.