Forum: Being First World starts with oneself

Pedestrians walking outside Takashimaya in Orchard Road.
Pedestrians walking outside Takashimaya in Orchard Road.PHOTO: ST FILE

Opinions differ, but in the ongoing conversation about whether Singapore is a First World country populated with Third World people, my experiences do not match Professor Tommy Koh's harsh words (Why are Singaporeans a Third World people?, Oct 6).

As I leave my home, the Chinese uncle asks how my last trip was, the Indian shopkeeper at 7-Eleven gives me two dining scratch card vouchers , the Malay cashier at the Coffee Bean outlet tells me about her company trip - to Bangkok, no less.

In the 18 years I have been in Singapore, people tend to respond in kind when I treat them with a kind and positive attitude and behaviour. I take an interest in people's lives.

Is there room for improvement? Sure. But it all starts with me, not others.

Jorg Dietzel

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on October 08, 2019, with the headline 'Being First World starts with oneself'. Print Edition | Subscribe