Re: "Suthep warns red-shirt leaders of 'popcorn vendors'", Politics, February 20.
In response to reports that the red shirts may confront his anti-government supporters, Suthep Thaugsuban is quoted as saying, “They should come because popcorn vendors are preparing popcorn for them. I don’t know these popcorn vendors but I really love them.” No doubt these comments were greeted with much laughter from his audience.
I wonder if I am alone in finding these comments deeply distasteful, and indeed menacing. He is clearly making reference to the gunman at Laksi Plaza who was photographed concealing his weapon in a corn bag. Gunfire aimed at the red shirts during that incident left several people injured, including an elderly man shot in the neck and reportedly paralysed. Suthep has a history of making insensitive remarks about those he despises, most notably his comment in 2010 that red shirts killed in the crackdown had “run into bullets”.
Suthep no longer seems to bother about keeping up the pretence that his demonstrations are peaceful. Indeed he seems to find gunfire from among his supporters a suitable subject for humour.