My blood boils when I read this.
Some may view this as just a dumb, but innocent question; I think it mirrors how NSFs and NSmen tend to be viewed in Singapore.
It is bad enough that Singaporean men are forced to serve two years of full-time “slavery” (NSF) and at least ten years of part-time “slavery” (NSmen) on slave wages (just $200+ a month during my time).
It saddens me further that not only are we not being appreciated by our fellow Singaporeans, some like this lady here perceives us to be lesser beings, singled out for discrimination.
I am sick of seeing men in uniform being STOMPed and criticised for the alleged “offences” of sitting down in buses, MRT trains, or even eating their meals while in uniform.
SAF personnel are not human beings is it? Must we forever be the ones making sacrifices for everything?
MINDEF like to ask NS personnel – “What would you defend?”
Singaporeans who discriminate against us?
So far, MINDEF’s campaigns always seems to be directed at Singaporean men, brainwashing us on the need to step forward and serve the nation.
What about Singaporeans at large?
Should they not learn to appreciate the contributions of our NSF and NSmen?
In Taiwan, the 阿兵哥 (conscripted soldiers) are treated with respect by the Taiwanese public and are even accorded unsolicited discounts at shops and food stalls at times. In US, the Marines are respected and regarded as national heroes.
In Singapore, I recall instances of being called “Chao Recruit“; given the dirty look when visiting pubs and clubs with my fellow NSFs; being branded as “desperados” by local girls among many other crappy treatments.
Rest assured that when I take public transport, I WILL NOT GIVE UP MY SEAT TO ANOTHER ABLED-BODIED PERSON. In fact, I will make sure I snatch the seat from you unless you are an elderly, pregnant or sick.