Voices Of Youth

Social contract unites Singaporeans

While the attacks in Paris were an atrocity, the Islamophobic responses were even more astounding ("Paris lockdown after terror attacks"; Nov 15).

However, this is not the case in Singapore, which shows that we have done the right thing in the founding years of our nation.

While there are many ethnicities in our tiny island, we see ourselves as one civilisation altogether.

We are uniquely united, and this is the result of a special brand of nationalism unique to Singapore.

Traditional nationalism is often built on the cornerstones of religion and ethnicity.

However, ours is a large-scale solidarity, constituted by the feeling of the sacrifices that one has made in the past and those that one is prepared to make in the future.

We have a social contract to build an egalitarian nation, where every individual who commits to the contract is entitled to the rights of a citizen.

A Singaporean Muslim recently posted on Facebook that Islamic extremism is a problem for Muslims to deal with. I hope he knows that the people of Singapore stand in solidarity with our Muslim brethren and are ready to help them in any way.

Edward Ong Yu Xiang, 21, first-year university student