Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Alvin Tan Jye Yee: the 3 lessons Singaporeans learn

Whenever something like the incident of Alvin Tan Jye Yee rocks Singapore and Singaporeans both literally and figuratively, we will all feel sad, ashamed, angry and disappointed.

Like most of the Singaporeans, I feel very angry, disappointed and regretful that such an incident has hit Singapore and Singaporeans. Such an incident has tainted the reputation of Singapore and its now globally-renowned National University of Singapore! The only way Singaporeans can do now after this incident of Alvin Tan Jye Yee has rocked Singapore and the world (via the internet) is to assess what the learning points that we can take home from the incident of Alvin Tan Jye Yee are.

So I will like to urge all Singaporeans to put on your thinking caps and see what we can learn from this saga of Alvin Tan Jye Yee. Teachers of our school should use this saga of Alvin Tan Jye Yee to teach and share with their students some of the lessons we can take away during civic and moral education.

I would like to share my own personal opinions about the episode of Alvin Tan Jye Yee:

First of all, while the law does not restrict people here to film their personal shows like what Alvin Tan Jye Yee did, it is really not a good idea to put these on the internet for public consumption as what we have seen from the reactions of the public, especially those who have seen the photos and videos; many are shocked, angry and express disapproval of such acts.

Second, we should not underestimate the power of netizens. It always seem such a quiet and private moment online whenever one surfs the net and makes comments. However from what we have seen in the Amy Cheong saga and in this Alvin Tan Jye Yee saga, netizens will be awakened and become activists in the leagues of the thousands once a comment or posting online crosses some boundaries. I believe Alvin Tan Jye Yee may have regretted putting the photos and videos on his blog as his blog has since been removed. However though all the photos and videos as well as his blog were removed, they were already made available somewhere else.

Third, we must have a more robust selection of selecting our scholars. NUS scholars who have made Singaporeans angry are now getting more and more. Before Alvin Tan Jye Yee, we have Sun Xu and MOE also has its “famous” scholar called Jonathan Wong. These scholars get expensive overseas education at prestigious universities with our hard-earned tax-payers’ monies, get promotions swiftly and earn such astronomical salaries. They should at the very least behave properly.  

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