Easy English news
Needed: lessons in democracy
- Published: 26 Aug 2011 at 08.45
- Online news:
During previous protests outside parliament, red-shirt demonstrators called for the resignation of a government they said came to power undemocratically. They are now being accused of being undemocratic themselves.
A man is held by red shirts who tried to block him from laying a wreath outside Parliament in a protest against House Speaker Somsak Kiatsuranont. Some MPs say the speaker lacked neutrality during the government policy debate in the House this week.
Needed: lessons in democracy
During their previous protests outside parliament, red-shirt demonstrators called for the resignation of a government they said came to power undemocratically.
Now that they have an elected government that they like, there is a small group of red-shirts outside parliament trying to make sure that no one gives it a hard time.
They are now being accused of being undemocratic themselves.
Yesterday, the group allegedly assaulted two men who were laying a wreath outside the House in protest against House speaker Somsak Kiatsuranont.
Yutthaphum Tanleg and Arthit Poonsiri were confronted by at least 10 red shirts who were camping out in front of parliament. The red-shirts surrounded the two men, destroying their wreath and beating them up.
Police tried to step in, but failed to act, because they were outnumbered.
Eventually other red shirts interceded and pulled the two away to safety.
The assault came soon after reports that red shirts had intimidated a female reporter from China's CCTV news agency on Tuesday.
The reporter was said to be wearing a yellow outfit when she stood amid red shirts to report on their rally.
The red shirts surrounded her and tried to prevent her from doing her job.
They let up only after the reporter's interpreter convinced them to stop.
There have been reports of online intimidation as well.
Yesterday, in an open letter to Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra, a group of reporters said they were concerned about an email hate campaign being conducted among red shirts who claimed to be supporters of Pheu Thai.
The e-mails included a photo of a Channel 7 female reporter and her name, with the remarks "Remember her face", and "Take care of her when you see her".
The woman reporter had apparently asked the new prime minister some tough questions.
Ms Yingluck said she would assign Deputy Prime Minister Chalerm Yubamrung to investigate.
Adapted from a story by Aekarach Sattaburuth and Mongkol Bangprapa in today's Bangkok Post.
block – to stop someone or something from moving through or along something else ปิดกั้น, กีดขวาง
wreath – a circle of flowers or leaves that you put on a grave to show that you are remembering the dead person พวงหรีด
protest – a strong complaint or disagreement การประท้วง
lack – to not have enough of something ขาด
neutrality – the state of not supporting either side in a competition, disagreement, war, etc. ความเป็นกลาง
policy – a set of plans or action agreed on by a government, political party, business, or other group นโยบาย
debate – a discussion in which people or groups state different opinions about a subject การอภิปราย, การโต้วาที, การถกเถียง
previous – happening or existing before the event or object that you are talking about แต่ก่อน, เมื่อก่อน
demonstrators – people who march with other people in public to show that they support or oppose something ผู้ชุมนุมประท้วง
resignation – the act of leaving a job, position of power, etc., permanently การลาออกจากตำแหน่ง
undemocratic – against or not acting according to the principles of democracy ไม่เป็นประชาธิปไตย
hard – difficult to do, understand or answer ยาก, ลำบาก
accused – to be said to have done something wrong or committed a crime ถูกกล่าวหา
allegedly – claimed to have done something wrong, but not yet proven ที่กล่าวหา
assault – to attack someone violently ทำร้ายร่างกาย
House Speaker – the person who is in charge of most of the activities of the House of Representatives ประธานสภาผู้แทนราษฎร
confront – to stand in front of someone in a frightening way เผชิญหน้า
camp out – to sleep outside, with or without a tent or other shelter, to stay in a place without the furniture and equipment that you normally have ตั้งค่ายพัก, พักแรม
surround – to be everywhere around something ล้อมรอบ
outnumbered – having fewer people than another group มีคนน้อยกว่า
eventually – at the end of a period of time or at the end of a process ในที่สุด
intercede – to speak to somebody in order to persuade them to have pity on somebody else or to help settle an argument ขอร้องให้คนอื่น, วิงวอนให้คนอื่น, พยายายามประนีประนอม
intimidate – to attempt to frighten someone in order to get them to do something ทำให้กลัว, ข่มขู่
female – being a woman or a girl สตรี, ผู้หญิง, เพศหญิ
reporter – someone whose job is to write articles or make broadcasts about events in the news ผู้สื่อข่าว, นักข่าว
outfit – a set of clothes that are worn together เครื่องแต่งกาย
amid – in the middle of; at the same time as ท่ามกลาง, ระหว่าง
rally – a public gathering of people to support someone or to protest against something การชุมนุม
interpreter – someone who changes what someone else is saying into another language ล่าม
convince – to make somebody/yourself believe that something is true; to persuade somebody to do something ทำให้เชื่อ, ทำให้แน่ใจ, ชักจูง
concerned – worried about something มีความกังวล
campaign – a series of actions intended to produce political or social change การรณรงค์
conduct – to do something in an organised way; to carry out — ลงมือทำ, ดำเนิน, ปฏิบัติ
claim – to say that something is true although it has not been proved and other people may not believe it อ้าง
apparently – based only on what you have heard or think, not on what you are certain is true; seemingly ตามที่ได้รู้มา
tough – difficult to deal with ยาก ยากลำบาก
assign – to give a person a particular task or position มอบหมาย, สั่งงาน
investigate – to try to find out the facts about something in order to learn the truth about it ตรวจสอบหาความจริง