On social media, there is a sharing on a video of a K-POP Hunt 3 finalist, Stephanie Koh listing the reasons on why she is not proud to be a Singaporean. It started with her recent interview with RAZOR TV when she commented on how she don’t bother to represent Singapore as she doesn’t feel proud to be a Singaporean. A video was then recorded by herself to elaborate on her reasons why she feel so.
The reasons that she mentioned in the video were as follows:
1. No place for an artist
She mentioned that there is an over emphasis on glorious careers such as being a doctor, lawyer and engineers that Singaporean has been thinking that this is the only way to success. What happened to the people who take the road less travelled? They are most likely to struggle and failed miserably.
2. Singaporeans are narrow-minded
She mentioned that Singaporean tend to believe whatever it is stated in the headlines. She illustrated her point using an example of minimum wage system article appeared in news last year. She also mentioned that Australia is much cheaper to live in than in Singapore.
3. Singaporeans are not creative
She mentioned that Singapore’s education system has no room for creativity. Singapore students were described as “homework robots”. Parents has the mentality that there is only one route to success to be book smart, no one does art and craft. Creativity is being slammed down as university entry is based solely on academic results and not other talents.
4. Singaporeans are submissive
In this point, she mentioned that no one thinks out of box, we are obedient people and will only do as what we were told to do. In other words, Singaporeans are all yes man and yes woman.
5. Singaporeans are not happy
She use the example of service industry that staff regard it as just a job rather than having a pride in what you are doing. She mentioned about our high suicide rate in a small country and how safe can Singapore be if people are all killing ourselves more than killing other people.
6. Singaporeans are not nice people
She compared her experiences with Australians and Singaporeans and come to the conclusion that Singaporean are not kind people. In her opinion, we do not greet each other nor concern about each other.
7. Everybody just follow the rules
She felt that freedom of speech does not exist in Singapore. She feels that no one ever speaks up, like we do not have a brain of our own and just go with the crowd.
Wow, that’s a plenty long list of unhappiness. Is Singapore really that bad?
My take is that, there is always pros and cons living in anywhere. Be it in Taiwan, Australia or Singapore (the 3 countries she used as comparison). What she just did is perhaps putting the spotlight on the ugly side, as a result the cons get magnify and it is making Singapore seemed really bad.
But hey, take a step back, look at the broader picture and you will discover there are as many or even more good things about Singapore. Besides the old repeated reason of Singapore being a country with no natural disasters, I felt there are much more. Let me just mentioned 2 strong reasons.
1. Stable and Peaceful Living Condition
Just look like the state Thailand, specifically – Bangkok is in currently – Riots and strike to overthrow the current government. The country has remain divided for many years and riots has became part and parcel of their life each year.
Living in Singapore, I do not take our peace we are having for granted. Everyone work hard and accommodate each other despite we have 4 major races (+now all the foreign workers and new citizens). I can’t help but say that we are very different yet we choose to live with each other in harmony. As a result, we get to enjoy and appreciate each other culture, food and festivals.
We should really count our blessings.
2. Our Youth has pretty much opportunities
Have a look at Italy’s unemployment rate and their graduate employability ratio, you will be glad how well we performed. The most cruel thing that could happened to a young graduate is to find himself without a job yet plenty of debts waiting to be repaid. I couldn’t imagine how despondent a young adult could be, having his/her dreams dashed without even a chance to strive.
As a result, the country’s security is bad. People have no choice but to live by stealing. You get numerous warnings from friends and family members that how careful you need to be in order to avoid being pick pocketed in Italy.
It just keep me feeling pity that such a beautiful place has to reach to this current state.
Yes, I do agree that we indeed have the flaws that Stephanie mentioned. We Singaporeans aren’t as creative nor as vocal as other country. We do lack of the common smiles and greeting to strangers and passerby. But I do see things are starting to change for the better. For example in education, we are slowly moving towards less emphasis on looking at just grades but to more on the overall performance of a student. Arts schools such as NAFA and SOTA have been built and in the midst of churning out talents.
Hence, I hope we could just give our home a bit more time? After all, we are still relatively a young nation, perhaps facing its own life crisis?
So let’s just love our country a little more and complain a little less? Let’s stay proud to be a Singaporean and work hard for a better future as I believe it definitely will be! 🙂
For those who is interested or miss the video can watch it here.