Forum: Treat everyone respectfully and fairly, regardless of status

People at a pedestrian crossing at Raffles Quay, on Nov 4, 2019.
People at a pedestrian crossing at Raffles Quay, on Nov 4, 2019.ST PHOTO: ONG WEE JIN

Recent incidents, including the dispute over overnight parking at a Whampoa condominium (Security union, groups back officer abused by condo resident, Oct 28), have reminded me of the importance of treating everyone respectfully and fairly, regardless of social and financial status.

I urge parents and schools to place more emphasis on inculcating the right life and moral values, social etiquette, social interaction and communication skills to students at all levels, instead of putting a lopsided emphasis on academic achievement.

A person who succeeds in life, be it by having a happy and warm family, a smooth and successful career or a meaningful life journey, may do so for various reasons. These include good physical and mental health, good character, a friendly but straight and honest personality, intellectual and emotional abilities and intelligence, social interaction and communicating skills, grasping of opportunity and intelligent use of environmental elements. Success in life is not solely determined by excellent academic results.

Anyone who equips himself with good social etiquette, empathy, self-regulation and other emotional quotient elements will benefit for the rest of his life.

I sincerely pray that Singapore will not end up being a divided and polarised society. In the words of Professor Tommy Koh (Diplomat Tommy Koh spells out wish list for 4G leaders, Oct 2): "Today, Singapore is not a classless society. We are divided by wealth, by income, by profession, by place of residence, and even by the school we attend."

Teo Kueh Liang