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One People, Divided

June 21, 2018


“Peace cannot be kept by force, it can only be achieved by understanding.” - Albert Einstein


This is exactly what the council does not understand.


The council can be credited for their efforts in helping the younger generation. However, they will not be able to further the discussion and solve any real issues unless they are able to put themselves in the shoes of the youth today.


The council is being far too hasty in passing their resolution, with several pertinent issues involving their policies and recommendations regarding the youth.


Very little has changed since the previous report. Some members of the council still wish to  defend their stance on CCE lessons despite several members being opposed to this idea.


Members such as Dr Mohamed Fatris Bakaram had expressed concerns regarding the school’s interests, commenting that, “The schools will have to take out some lessons from their normal curriculum in an already tight schedule which may not be in their best interests,”.


What the government proposes is that within our already extremely tight academic schedule they want to put more classes and lessons within.


From the perspective of someone still studying, what the council proposes will put a large strain on the lives of the students like myself. This in turn reduces the quality of education of the students.


This just goes to show that the governing members of our country are “old fogeys” who are unable to relate to the problems faced by the younger generations.


It is still unclear what the council wishes to discuss regarding this topic. The discussion appeared to have stagnated with no further debate on the topic.


What council is currently proposing will take its toll on students in educational institutions and make classes more difficult for them overall. The government has to do it in a non intrusive way, not something this disruptive.


The council then decided to target the demographic ‘Youths in workplaces’, where a program for fellow staff and employees could discuss  religion in both formal or informal environments. This is to allow people from different backgrounds to talk to each other and get past their preconceived notions and misconceptions.


Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong and Mr Rajan Krishnan were in a long, heated debate about whether these talks should be with or without external intervention.


Given time and further discussion, however, the majority of the council had come to a consensus that external intervention of  religious leaders as discussion moderators is necessary. This is thanks to Mr Osman’s suggestion of the religious leaders being allowed to moderate and supervise the formal talks.


Mr Rajan and other supporting delegates had given in and decided that they needed some form of moderation to be present in the talks Mr Rajan hence suggested that religious leaders be made available to conduct these formal talks.


The point brought up by PM Lee about these religious talks taking extremely long is very prevalent in discussion. He emphasised that training these religious leaders to be moderators in these talks is extremely unviable..


The council is simply not dealing with the situation at its core. The divide between peoples does not come from misunderstanding or lack of knowledge but a lack of humanisation.I can learn all there is to learn about a religion, but if I never have a friend of that religion or actively care about anyone from that demographic, I could never accept or “understand it.


If we do not see each other as human beings and if we do not look past our differences, we will never be able to fully integrate with each other and breach the divide.


The path to unity is not knowledge, it is humanity.


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