Recently, many Singaporeans are enraged with the steady increase in the number of foreign workers in the country. Many Singaporeans feel that Singapore ‘dont feel like home anymore’, and say that Singaporeans seem like a minority in our own homeland. I cannot disagree more. I hate the fact that there are more foreigners in a MRT cabin than there are locals. I honestly dislike the competitions that ours and the next generations are going to face. I truly hate how overcrowded we are right now.
But it dawn upon me that many Singaporeans are not treating these foreigners well, have we not? Hey, I’m guilty of that too. Sometimes on my way back to hall, I’ll come across China students. Actually, many times. Most of the time, I’ll glare at them when they are talking very loudly or blocking the path. I’ll be scolding them under my breath, blaming the government for allowing them into the school and fighting for space with local students.
We have all been really angry Singaporeans, haven’t we? I cant say we are to be blamed for thinking and behaving like this. We feel threatened. The country we used to call home is being invaded. We feel very insecure and afraid. We need to fight for our rights. But I cant help but feel that sometimes, just sometimes, we are doing it wrong.
Because let’s face it- foreigners are human too.
Today, in the MRT platform, I saw a group of foreigners who look like they are from the Mainland, arguing. It wasnt some kind of heated argument. There was a huge black bag on the ground, somewhat like a trashbag, and this man was pointing fingers at his ‘friends’, seemingly accusing them. But then this one man caught my attention. He was skinny, alright. Dressed in an oversized bright yellow and messy t-shirt tucked into a brown 3-quarter pants, and wearing sandals. On a normal occasion, the ‘fashion-police’ in me would immediately judge his appearance. But that look on his face, I still cannot forget. He was ashamed. Looking around at people who are staring at him. Head tilted down. Like a little puppy punished for being naughty.
But it was the look on his face that reminded me that these foreigners are human too. They feel shame, just like you and I. Yes, we dislike the fact that they are coming here in the hundreds, or even thousands. But I feel that if we were to personally ‘attack’ them individually, that doesnt make us very nice humans. Let’s not talk about being nice Singaporeans, like how the government have been urging us to be. Lets just talk of us as humans. Human beings. You and me.
Being mean to another person because of their nationality isnt very nice. It doesnt reflect very nicely of you. We can get angry, yes. We are humans too, we have emotions. Anger is one of them. But to look at an individual (or even a group) of foreigner and void them of basic human respect is rather mean, I feel.
I agree that not all foreigners have been very nice. The NUS students who called us dogs. The rich Ferrari driver who killed a Taxi uncle and a Jap lady. The China bus driver who knocked down an elderly pedestrian. And the list goes on…. … And yes, I feel angry too. I’m raging in anger. I feel sad for the people who have died, our innocent fellow Singaporeans… And I can understand why and how my friends are very pissed off too. I believe that we have all the rights to be angry. But that doesnt give us the rights to be mean. To treat them less of a human being. I’m guilty of being bad too, and I’m trying my best to mend my ways though I’m very sure it wont be easy.
I know what it feels like to be treated in a biased manner, and hey, it sucks so bad I wanted to cry. In fact, I did. I’m sure you have felt this way too, to be treated in a way you start to wonder if you’re actually human. If we hate being treated like this, maybe we should start treating people better. It’s not about Karma. It’s just about being human…