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"Scouring the Merlion's roar amidst a new age"
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"Scouring the Merlion's roar amidst a new age"

Aristle Tay picSingapore has been able to accomplish its goal of moving from a Third World to a First World country, asserts 19-year-old Aristle Tay, a Commonwealth Correspondent from Singapore. As it basks in this success, the country and its people should work steadfastly towards a narrative which builds upon the goals of all citizens.

I heard about it and had seen it on Youtube.

Even now, a massive cornucopia of thoughts is still circling within my mind.

For 5,000 Singaporeans to gather simultaneously on a precious Saturday morning at the Speakers’ Corner, Hong Lim Park,  is totally out of the blue. On that day, the 16th of February 2013, that same throng sang the National Anthem in unison.

One does not require the doctrinal complexities of psychological sciences to comprehend the implications of such an event.

In order to sift out the crust of this issue at hand, I think it is better for me to bring you back in time.

On 11 August 1965, when Mr Lee Kuan Yew announced the separation of Singapore from Malaysia, he spoke of a dream; a desirable dream during those times; in which every Singaporeans can live a life of happiness and fulfilment. Singaporeans took it in and they believed in that goal whole-heartedly.

As I write this article in 2013, I realise that we have indeed come a long way. We have accomplished this dream. Despite its tiny size, Singapore now possesses a vibrant and robust economy.

Then why did five thousand people still gather to protest on a weekend, you may ask?  Why am I even telling you about what happened in 1965? I will explain myself shortly.

The narrative of Third World to First World Singapore that Mr. Lee spoke of 48 years ago is now expiring. Before my critics start pounding on me, I shall address this issue in greater clarity.

We all know that a common goal is essential to connect humans in any society. This is especially true, given the demographics of Singapore are built on migrant backgrounds.  Since Singapore has accomplished its vision of Third World world to First World, it is imperative that we, its people, seek a new narrative which encompasses all common aspirations.

Singapore is no anomaly. There are many times when other communities have to forge a new narrative into the lives of their people.

I am not trying to press in the implementation of a narrative, however, because that is not easy. The government of Singapore has already initiated the Singapore Conversation in search of it. But, I must proclaim that we need to be fast in finding this narrative.

 As a frequent commuter, the top three topics that I have heard were being fed up with overcrowded infrastructure, undeserving wages and the feelings of alienation in their homeland. As seen with the recent protest, even the highest of Tories will agree with me on this.

For the beauty and progress of my nation, I pray hope that haste be with my people as we scout for my nation’s new narrative.

Photo credit: <a href=”http://www.flickr.com/photos/adforce1/4183927217/”>williamcho</a> via <a href=”http://photopin.com”>photopin</a> <a href=”http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/2.0/”>cc</a>

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About me:

I’m an 19-year-old male Chinese who loves astronomy, adventurous challenges, running, and most of all, interacting with youths all around the world!  Presently serving my two-year National Service in the Singapore Armed Forces.

I have always held the belief that arguments and debates, while meant to drive out flaws in our opinions, should serve to bind us together and not separate us. For united we stand, divided we fall.

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Opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of the Commonwealth Youth Programme. Articles are published in a spirit of dialogue, respect and understanding. If you disagree, why not submit a response?

To learn more about becoming a Commonwealth Correspondent please visit: http://www.yourcommonwealth.org/submit-articles/commonwealthcorrespondents/

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