would sheepish singaporeans be anti social?
Over the last few days there were several comments in the MSM and Cyberspace about Singaporeans getting irritated with anti social behaviours like smoking in non smoking areas or queue jumping. Many were advocating taking actions into their own hands, to tell off the offenders. These are calls for actions, to take ownership and responsibility for anti social behaviours in the public by the people. It is a move in the right direction. Singaporeans should stand up and feel that this is their country and they jointly own this place. Only when Singaporeans feel that this is their home and not a hotel that they will think it is necessary to take care fo the place. And many of the offenders are not really Singaporeans but guests, ie foreigners. Given the general comment that Singaporeans are meek, do not want to get into unpleasant situations, wanting to save face and avoid trouble, it is unlikely that they would want to adopt anti social behaviours to draw attention to themselves. The exception is the younger groups of Singaporeans, the adolescence trying to grow up. This group may be a little rowdy and less restraint. A Carmen Teoh-Tang wrote to admit sheepishly that she was told off in foreign countries for not giving her seat to the elderly. It would be good if Singaporeans too would do that to anyone, including foreigners. What could have happened was that she was a stranger in a foreign land where the foreigners few brashed enough to tell the diminutive little Asian girl off in their land. It could be a kind of xenophobic bullying taking the face of social grace. We should not bully anyone who lacked social graces, local or foreigners. But more Singaporeans should speak out to make this place of ours a more sociable and hospitable place to live in.