The callous use of a simple word
The Straits Times headlined, Passing of a Spore titan. And many other local media also reported on the passing of Dr Goh Keng Swee. The same news is being reported by overseas media but treated in a little careless or callous way. And their headlines read, Dr Goh Keng Swee dies, Goh Keng Swee dies, Dep PM Goh Keng Swee dies, …. There is nothing wrong or incorrect to say Goh Keng Swee dies. But reading it gives one a different feel of the event. He dies, you die, instead of he passes away, departed, called home to be with the Lord, you see, the latter sounds so different or at least polite. Imagine the media starts to report the king dies, the president dies, so and so’s father or mother dies, or the king is dead…. I still like to use more pleasant and civil terms like pass away, passing away and better still, called home to be with the Lord.