Pages

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

All people are the same

COURTESY SHORTFALL

From Third World to First, there are both courteous and impolite

Letter from Rejesh Seth


I refer to “Efficiency’s a drag” (March 30). I believe “we see what we want to see” and our minds are mostly biased when we make observations.

Mr Joseph Wong compared an incident at a fivestar hotel in Tokyo with one at a public event which drew a record crowd in Singapore.

I am sure if the comparison was made between a Tokyo train station during peak hour and one in a lift at a five-star hotel here, the result would have been the opposite.

I have travelled extensively all over the world and I have found that humans are similar in their behaviour regardless of their backgrounds.

Circumstances or the existing way of life are what makes people behave the way they do.

To take this discussion a little forward, in Third World countries, where a majority of the population do not have a decent lifestyle, you may perhaps find a lot of pushing and jostling.

But this in no way changes human behaviour, as you will still find most of the people there eager to be polite in the way they know best.

On the other hand, recent cases of natural disasters in first world countries brought out shocking cases of inhuman behaviour in normally orderly people.

Behaviour is very complex and cannot be generalised.

In any case, I strongly consider Singaporeans as one of the most polite people compared to their counterparts elsewhere.

From TODAY, Voices
Tuesday, 31-March-2009