[About this blog] Inspired by local soccer player Mike Lim during my rookie reporter days at Singapore Polytechnic, I set up this blog in August 2002. I feel that blogging is a novel platform to document interesting facets of my life and my thoughts on certain issues. [Email blogger] ephraim@singnet.com.sg

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

[Kota Tinggi Floods]
1. It is heartbreaking to see the scenes of flooding in Kota Tinggi again, coming so soon after the flooding before Christmas. It must be terrible for those living there.

Photo credit: http://gallery.thestar.com.my/default.asp?id=640

2. I flew back from Cebu with Malaysia's Foreign Minister Syed Hamid last Saturday evening. Kota Tinggi is his constituency. He was very concerned for the inhabitants and had decided to rush back directly from Changi Airport. He knew that the road to Kota Tinggi was inundated. I offered a boat or a ferry from Changi to Tanjong Belunkor but the route from there to Kota Tinggi was also affected. He told me that the Malaysian Army would get him there from Majidi Camp one way or another, by a five-ton truck and boat if necessary. After getting a pair of shoes and a jacket, he sped off to the Causeway.

3. Earlier last year, I attended Syed Hamid's son's wedding reception in Kota Tinggi with many of my grassroots leaders. It was a beautiful day and we were welcomed with great hospitality by the people there. Our hearts go out to them. I hope the weather will quickly improve for the people of Kota Tinggi.

Visit Beyond SG to read more about my Journey to India


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hello Mr. Yeo!
I totally understand if you cannot give me any answers to these comments but I would really appreciate if you could read them. =)

I was just going through the comments you made 12 years ago in 1995 in the Straits Times Article, "Debate yes, but do not take those in authority as 'equals'" where you stated that debate cannot degenerate into a free-for-all where no distinction is made between the senior and junior party and distinctions must be taken into considerations.

Not sure whether you could reply in the capacity as a citizen here, but I was just wondering whether your opinions has changed since then.

1) I totally agree that in terms of respect, I fully adopt the Asian culture of respecting a senior by virtue that he is a senior. In fact, I would think that respect for seniors is a global culture and not just an Asian one. Western teens might address their parents by their first names but they still do maintain that respect.

However, what are you opinion of "over respect" to the point of being a person who does not bother to think because of the trust that he places in the authority to look after him? We would all agree that "men are fallen creatures" and that the best intentions of man could simply go wrong.

2) Would this over respect going into fear of authorities or the main line which the authority go prevent people from taking up new ideas? An example would be, parents always tell the child that he should always finish all the food on the table, but the child is getting quite overweight. Out of respect of his parents, he continues doing it, not wanting to contradict his parent's long held beliefs. How would you suggest you help this child voice out his beliefs?

The balance between respecting of authorities and giving forth free unrestricted comments without any fear of reprisal is a tough one. However, if the world had changed and people still stick to what their community believes in out of "respect" wouldn't we be going down the ways of civilisations that could only be found in history?

Thank you!

Tuesday, January 16, 2007 2:57:00 pm


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