Sunday, 23 August 2015

Tong Yizhi (20) 19/08/15

Article: Singaporean uncle's kind act towards foreign labourers in train goes viral
Link: http://www.straitstimes.com/singapore/singaporean-uncles-kind-act-towards-foreign-labourers-in-train-goes-viral
Date of publish: 25 August 2015

Issue being discussed:
A Singaporean uncle encouraged three construction workers to stay in their seats when they got up to give up their seats to some Singaporean commuters. He thinks that they helped Singapore to build our homes so they can sit since their stop will take a very long time. His action was captured in a Facebook post by the reporter who was in the same train carriage as them, has gone viral. Many people praised the Singaporean uncle and was proud of his kind act.

General observation:
There are many foreign workers in Singapore. They helped Singapore to be clean and also build our homes. However, not many Singaporeans are willing to be kind to them. They either look down on them or are scared of them since they are foreigners. Sometimes, when a foreign worker approach us for help, we would most likely to brush them off.

Point of view:
The writer did not state his point of view, so I will share my point of view. I think that this Singaporean uncle was very kind. He knows that the three foreign construction workers must be very tired after the long day of work so he encouraged them to keep their seats. Furthermore, I agree with his statement "Hey you can sit down... You don't always have to give up your seat, especially not to men on the train. You come here to build our homes so you can sit also you know?" Without their help and hardship, we would not have a home to stay. They are foreigners who come from another country to work here. Most of their jobs requires physical strength that is extremely tiring. But they are building our home for us so we should be kind to them. When they need help with directions, instead of ignoring them or brush them aside, we should help them. They must feel very helpless if no one would help them as Singapore is a foreign country to them. We should learn more from the Singaporean uncle, appreciate the foreign workers' efforts and hardship and be kind towards them.

Friday, 21 August 2015

ng tat kit 33

source: straits time online
http://www.straitstimes.com/singapore/soya-bean-milk-saga-50000-free-pork-floss-buns-and-50000-donation-as-breadtalk-makes
 published on august 21

the article is about how the Breadtalk chain is giving away 50,000 buns over 3 weekends and donated $50,000 to community chest to make amends for selling soya bean milk in mislabeled bottles.

I feel that what Breadtalk did is much justified. As the huge chain has been doing this 2014, there was surely much money saved. However, i do not buy into Breadtalk's explanation, that the bottles were to used to store fruit juices and that it did not directly apologise, instead using an euphemism of "A management oversight" to explain for the con. what was worse was that although the employees would clearly have known what they were doing, none of them thought to blow the whistle on them. furthermore, this has been happening since 2014.
The fact that none of them ever went to inform the authorithies on what they were doing for more shows the attitude of singaporeans nowadays, basically the "its not my problem so I won't tell anyone mentality." i feel that at least one of them should have owned up to it.

Wednesday, 19 August 2015

Yong Jie Ning (22) 19 August

Bomb blast in Bangkok kills at least 16
 
Source: iPad straits time 
Published on: 18 August 


The issue discussed here is that in Bangkok, there is a sudden bomb blast that has killed at least 16 people. It is the worst incident that has happened in Bangkok and the authorities are looking into this unnatural matter. There are 4 foreigners among those dead and no Singaporeans have since reported dead but there are some injured Singaporeans. The Singapore ambassy staff have met the injured Singaporeans and providing assistance to them. There were many casualties and 2 hospitals nearby the attacked scene are urgently requesting for blood donors. 

The writer did not expressed any views but I feel that the person who planted the bomb there is very irresponsible as the suspect did not consider the effects of the bomb that it will harm many people and property and even cause many lives to be lost. Not only is this is an irresponsible act, but also an unacceptable act. I find the person who has planted the bomb really ridiculous as he / she place a bomb at such a crowded and lively area. This obviously shows that the bomber wants to kill people and a sign of threatening the authorities. However, even so he / she shouldn't do so because bombing at such a lively place also took local and foreigners' lives who are innocent. Anyways, no matter what reason there is, he / she or anyone shouldn't bomb. 

If this happened in Singapore, the person who did it must be a lunatic because Singapore is known as a harmonious country so no one should bomb somewhere because of something that he / she is unhappy or unsatisfied with. I believe Singapore authorities will also take neccessary actions like the Bangkok authorities to ensure that all citizens remain safe. 


Tuesday, 18 August 2015

Lim Jak Zeng (31) 2H 18/8/2015

Title of Article: IT company manager admits to hurting and abusing worker
Date of Publish: 18/8/2015

This article is about a case of employee abused. A IT company manager, Mr Lee Yew Nam plead guilty for causing harm repeatedly to one of his fellow employee, Mr Calvin Chan Meng Hock for mistakes that he has done at work. The video of the manager punching and slapping Mr Chan has gone viral through the social media. This case was adjourned to 14th September.

I feel that what the employer did is absolutely cannot be tolerated. As a employer, he or she should be able to lead his group of employees to accomplish task. He should never have used violence against an employees inability to accomplish a task. I find it very unfair to "punish" an employee by punching him for not doing what the employer wants him to do. Everyone makes mistakes, and so does the employees, thus the manager should have been more patient and not hot-tempered. Even if employees get ridiculously behind task, employers should never use any physical methods to force the employee to work. Physical abuse can cause the employee to be emotionally stressed. We are very lucky that here in Singapore, we have strict laws protecting employees from such an abuse, and employers are strictly dealt with if they do so. This reduces the chance of such incidents from happening.

Genevieve Lim (6) 12/8/15

http://www.straitstimes.com/singapore/courts-crime/car-veers-out-of-control-7-vehicles-in-carpark-damaged

Car veers out of control, 7 vehicles in carpark damaged
This article is about a seven-seater Toyata car leaving a trail of destruction in a carpark in McNair Road after its driver lost control and sparked a series of collisions that damaged eight cars, including itself. Ms Vila said she was hanging out with a group of friends in the neighbourhood through the night. The accident occurred as they were about to drive out of the estate. The group had been drinking alcohol before the accident. 

Response: I think Ms Vila and her group of friends should have been more responsible. If they were drinking alcohol before leaving, they should abide by the law of not drunk driving and not operate the car under drunk circumstances. This act has caused many serious consequences too, such as the car colliding with 7 other vehicles, causing lots of damage to each vehicle. The group should have also been more thoughtful and think through their actions clearly before attempting to proceed with them. If you were the owner of the damaged car, wouldn't you be angry or shocked to see that your car is wrecked by another person? Furthermore, what if your car was a new one, and you have to spend more money to fix it or redesign it again? This goes to show how not thinking before we act, can lead to many serious consequences.

Ow Wen Xuan (18) 19/8

Current Affairs (15)

Link to article : http://www.straitstimes.com/singapore/pm-lee-launches-a-set-of-commemorative-50-and-10-notes-to-mark-sg50

Article name : PM Lee launches a set of commemorative $50 and $10 notes to mark SG50
Published date : 18 August 2015


This article is about a set of six currency notes which was launched on Tuesday with designs on it which shows the milestones and achievements in Singapore's history. It is to mark Singapore's 50th Birthday and it consists of one $50 note and five $10 notes in each set. It was also mentioned that these notes have a new security feature whereby the security stripes on the note features "1965" which changes to ""2015" when viewed from a different angle. The new design on the set of $10 notes shows values and aspirations of Singapore such as multiracialism, meritocracy, peace and stability, strong families and active citizenry. On the other hand, on the front of the gold $50 note shows the late Mr Lee Kuan Yew at the steps of City Hall in 1959 with a raised first, leading the crowd with a rallying cry of "Merdeka!", which shows us the event where Singapore achieved self-government. While on the back of the note, it features Singapore's first National Day Parade on 9 August 1966 and the latest new town of Punggol which highlights Singapore's transformation through these years. It was specially mentioned that the note's gold colour reflects the country's golden jubilee.


As the writer did not express his point of view, I will talk about mine instead. I feel that it is indeed a very remarkable and important event that this year is Singapore's 50th birthday as an independent country as it was definitely not an easy feat since Singapore is such a small country. I personally find that launching a set of commemorative notes is a very good idea and is of much significance. This is because it has many meanings behind every single of the dollar notes since they all have their own unique value. Thus, I find that it is a great choice to do so since it also can be added on to part of Singapore's item collection which shows our growth throughout the years.

Tuesday, 11 August 2015

Yizhuo2h

Title of Article: Protect young from problem gambling(Opinion section)

Link: http://www.straitstimes.com/news/opinion/more-opinion-stories/story/protect-young-problem-gambling-20150223

In this article, the issue being discussed is more and more young people are having a habit of gambling. In the article, the writer feels that young people should not start gambling and for those that have started, we need to help them to kick the habit. The article also states that some of the reasons more youths are starting to gamble is due to the fact that we are in such a technologically-advanced country. These youths may gamble online just for fun but before they knew it, they have gotten the habit of gambling. Some youths may also do a little bit of gambling for fun during festive seasons but they got carried away and they could no longer stop the habit, as stated by the article.

After reading this article, I definitely agree with the writer's point of view. We can think that gambling will not cause harm to our families and it is easy to kick the habit. But it is not as easy as we think it is. It can cause a lot of financial problems to our family and bring about unnecessary stress to the whole family. It can also bring a lot of heartbreaks and cause the relationships and bonds between our friends and family members to break. Not only that, families may also have to face a constant problem: Loan sharks. These gamblers will never stop gambling once they have gotten addicted to it. When families have no more money to supply them with money to gamble, they will look for the loan sharks to borrow money. And we all know how frightening it is whenever a loan shark comes knocking on our door for money and pouring paint all over our door. No one wants all of these to happen. Thus, we should keep an eye out of these youths and make sure that they are not having the habit of gambling. If we ensure that youths are not into gambling, this country will definitely become a better place.

Yizhuo2h

PM Lee presents 200 Pioneer Generation cards to elderly constituents in Teck Ghee

In this article, reporter Au Yong reports that PM Lee presented pioneer generation cards to elderly people. Mr Lee, speaking in both English and Chinese, said the package was a token of our appreciation and gratitude and our respect to the pioneer generation who helped us to build the today's Singapore. It is to honor and thank our pioneers for their hard work and dedication. I totally agree with PM Lee saying that our pioneer generation had put in a lot of hard work when they were young, determined, passionate and worked together hand in hand with our former prime minister Lee Kuan Yew to build today's Singapore because they have spent their time when they were all young and energetic to build Singapore and provide such a good environment for their children and grand-children to enjoy something which they themselves did not have, but created. The pioneer generation card will allow these people to not have to pay as much when they are sick and are heavily subsidized which helps them with their healthcare costs for life. The pioneers have worked so hard to make Singapore what is today, a modern, prosperous and high economic city. I think it is definitely right for the government to repay these pioneers for their hard work and dedication for Singapore as we will not be what we are without them by the pioneer generation package that will help the pioneer generation in defraying their healthcare costs. Our pioneers set Singapore on its path of development and transformed the lives of a whole population through their courage and resilience. We have achieved much in this 50 years of nation building, and there is much for us to remember and learn from the values, spirit and shared aspirations of our pioneer generation. Thus, I agree with the governments decision for establishing the pioneer generation package.

Yizhuo2h

Link: http://www.straitstimes.com/news/opinion/more-opinion-stories/story/chasing-debts-civilly-20150222
Chasing debts civilly
The issue being discussed is the degrees of harm that can be inflicted on debtors with the now tactic of humiliating them in their workplace or neighbourhood. Due to rigorous law enforcement, the dreaded Ah Longs and their gangster-style tactics are less visible now. However, what we are seeing now are debt collectors harassing debtors in public places by wearing polos emblazoned with "debt recovery unit" tags and displaying banners to boot that read "Attention. Debt collection in progress". The writer agrees that it's is an altogether disturbing development and disapproves the actions and the behavior of such debt collectors.
I agree with the writer's point of view. I feel that collecting debts could be carried out in a more polite and orderly manner instead of humiliating the debtors in the eye of the public and shaming them. Although such actions like shaming borrowers via letters of demand faxed to their workplaces, this is still a form of harm as they are indirectly harrassing them.
If I were to put myself in a debt collector's shoes, I would feel frustrated and annoyed at debtors if they do not return the money borrowed on time and would definitely want them to repay their loans as quickly as possible. However, I will not go to the extend such that the debtor will get harmed in any way. We as citizens, of course, would want and expect them to adopt fair collection practices and abstain from strong-arm tactics: harassing behavior, threats and physical violence. I feel that it is possible for debt collectors to collect in a more polite manner without using any sort of violence, so long as both debt collector and debtor cooperate. As the writer said, to demonstrate professionalism, debt collectors should propose their own code of conduct. If not only debt collectors, but also everybody cooperate with each other,  and not to harrass each other in any form, then we will be able to live in peace and harmony.

Yizhuo 2 h

Title: "Let's do more to support elderly cardboard collectors"

In this article, the writer tries to rally support from the public to help the elderly cardboard collectors. He wrote this article after the accident involving an elderly woman, Zheng Yuan Ying, being killed while collecting cardboard. Madam Zheng was pinned under a bus while making her way to a cardboard-collection point.

What I find really interesting about this article is that the writer said that the elderly cardboard collectors were paid 10 cents per kilo of cardboard collected. The writer interviewed some collectors and they told him that they make about $10 a day. That also meant that they would have to collect 100kg of cardboard. "Why do these seniors take such a risk? What drives people like Madam Zheng to work through their golden years for a pittance?" This were the questions the writer asked which I found very intriguing.

Personally, I was shocked when I read that the elderly cardboard collectors only made 10 cents for every kilo of cardboard collected. I could not imagine how much effort the elderlies have to put in when they are just trying to make ends meet. Suppose they want to eat a bowl of fishball noodles that cost $2.50, they would have to collect 25kg of cardboard just to fill up their stomach. I really feel that many people now a days do not appreciate what they have. People are still complaining about the food they are given and some even throwing them away.

After doing some research online, I found out that there's a non-profit organisation in Singapore called "Happy People Helping People Foundation". Their mission is to invite elderly cardboard collectors to attend, for free, a potluck party that they organise once every two to three months, called Extend the Feast. I feel very happy to know that there are still people in Singapore who care for the older generations, trying their best to make their golden years happier.

Yizhuo2h

Iggy Azalea Quits Social Media After Body Bullying, Her Team Takes Over

This article talks about Iggy Azalea quitting social media due to the negative comments she had read online about her body. The Australian rapper and songwriter decided to take a break from social media platforms, such as Twitter and Instagram, shortly after she came back from a vacation in Hawaii. The reason for this was because people were shaming her body after photos of her in her bikini had surfaced and she was really frustrated and annoyed.

I do not think its appropriate to shame others for their looks or bodies, including celebrities. Nobody is perfect and everyone has their own flaws they like to get rid off. Just because celebrities are famous does not mean that they are flawless, gifted with good looks and a great personality. Even Iggy Azalea said in her tweet that 'everyone deserves peace'. They are humans too and have feelings like me and you. No one would want to be made fun of, right? So why are we not treating these stars with the same respect we want to be treated with? Although they might be rich and have millions of fans, it does not give anyone the right to make vicious and cruel remarks about them behind the veil of anonymity of the internet. Constructive criticism and harmful criticism are very different, and unfortunately, the latter seems to appear more on the internet. A reason for celebrities receiving so much hate might be due to the fact that they are put on a pedestal, so for example, when a ugly photo of them surfaces, a tidal wave of insults will come rushing at them. I feel sorry for these people. It should not be part of anyone's job to have to deal with people asking them daily to 'kill themselves'.

The most impactful part of article on me was the sentence 'She added, "The Internet is the ugliest reflection of man kind there is".' On this, I have to unfortunately agree with Iggy Azalea. Being an avid user of social media, I have seen my fair share of rude comments and insults about celebrities and content creators. It is very disheartening to see all these very unnecessary stuff posted for the whole world to see. I think that a lot of people feel safe expressing their hate behind their computer screens. This just seems to feed cowardice and encourages this kind of behaviour. I believe that many people need to learn to voice their opinions responsibly so as to not cause any harm or hurt to the receiving party. However, I have little to no faith that this change will actually happen.

From this article, I have gained a new whole insight of the uglier side of the internet. I think that everyone should be more polite and positive to one another online. People should express their criticism in a constructive way. Hate comments to be kept to a minimum or even better, non-existent. We all need to think before we act as whatever we type out and display on the internet can affect a person significantly.

Source: https://gma.yahoo.com/iggy-azalea-quits-social-medial-body-bullying-145612122--abc-news-music.html

Yizhuo 2H


Title: Cards, phones, jackets - over 24,000 items left on planes and at Changi
Date published: 21st February 2015

This article discusses about the increasing number of items being left behind on planes and at Changi. It is reported that 17,000 items have been left on planes last year, which is 11/2 times of  the number of items found last year. Changi Airport Group recovered 7,680 credit/ATM cards and mobile phones last year compared with 7,180 in 2013, which are kept for 3 days and then cut up. Apart from phones and cards, sweaters, jackets, shawls, books and tablet devices are the other more common items people leave behind, unusual items such as hearing aids, breast pumps, a bird cage and cabinet doors, have also turned up. These are either handed to the airlines or kept in lost and found offices. Sometimes, these items are returned to their owners if they are reachable, or else, they will be donated to charities such as the Salvation Army.

After reading the article, I feel that the increasing amount of items being left behind is caused by the laziness of people these days. More and more people and getting lazier and lazier, meaning that they will be too lazy to check if they have all their items which results in a higher chance of leaving their things behind. People being inconsiderate may also be one of the factors. Sometimes, people might see others leaving their items behind but are not willing to tell them. This may also be because they are too lazy to do it. I think that the amount of items found can be greatly reduced if we are more careful and aware of our surroundings at all times. 

In conclusion, there is a increasing amount in the number of items found in planes and at Changi which can be reduced if we are less lazy, more considerate and careful. 

Yizhuo 2h

Channel News Asia, Thursday 26February
 Futuristic 'smart homes' to be a reality soon

This article is about the future of our homes. A lot of devices will soon be able to recognize our lifestyle patterns and automatically do things that we do on a daily or weekly basis. For example, you will wake up and find that there is already a cup of coffee just brewed by the coffee machine. However, given the current limits to technology, the initial focus would be on providing the infrastructure for existing technology that allows, for example, washing machines and vacuum cleaners to be operated remotely from mobile devices such as our mobile phones. Samsung and Qingjian have signed a memorandum of understanding to integrate smart living technology into property developments. 

After reading this article, I feel that this new 'smart home' technology will really help us in our daily lives. It will save us time and effort as most of the things will be able to operate by themselves. We will not have to spend time to sweep or mop the floor weekly. The machines will be able to to all this by themselves automatically. Also, it is very convenient for us. When we get home, the television will automatically be turned on for us, or the bath tub will already be filled with water. 

Although some might find that these are for the lazy, I feel that it really helps us out in out daily lives.

Monday, 10 August 2015

Yizhuo 2h


Current Affairs Reading (Lim Yiting 16)

Running 50km a day, over 50 days, to celebrate SG50. 

Fifty staff and students from the institute of technical education (ITE) will take turn running 50 km a day, over a span of 50 days alongside veteran ultra marathoners, in lieu of Singapore's 50th birthday. 
I feel that this event encourages young people to exercise more. They will find a drive to do something significant for their nation's birthday, thus going for this run. Nowadays, people are getting more attached to their phones, thus not exercising as frequently. This event will encourage people to have a healthier lifestyle and also feeling a sense of pride for their nation's 50th birthday. 

Source: http://news.asiaone.com/news/singapore/running-50km-day-over-50-days-celebrate-sg50#sthash.8NocPXU8.dpuf

Jesper 30


Issue being discussed here is that 16 year old boy, Amos Lee, posted a video on YouTube named " Lee Kuan Yew is finally dead ". The video went viral. He was being disrespectful towards the late Mr Lee and the Christians. He was then brought to court and was charged with 3 offences. His father apologises to Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong on behalf of his son. 

I find that this teenager is being very disrespectful. He should never insult the founding father of our nation, Mr Lee Kuan Yew. He gave up his life for us to build the nation. We could say that without him, Singapore will not be where we are now, we could still be a fishing village rather than a first world country now. He compared Mr Lee to Jesus and made very insulting comments. These actions from him is very undesirable. We could have trace back to the past. Without Mr Lee's hard work and contribution, Amos Lee would not have such a skilled ways of speaking, Amos Lee is being very unappreciative. One should never insult others religion. No matter which religion we are in, we should always respect other religions too. Even though Amos Lee could be a atheist, he should never ever made rude comments on the God and Christianity. Probably he thinks that all his actions will only affect him, however this comes with great consequences. Firstly, he will be sued and jailed. Secondly, his education and future will be affected. Thirdly, this will bring disgrace to his parents and his family. His parents will be utmost disappointed and hurt by him. Amos should learn to think before he speaks. He does not seem regretful at all when leaving the court. He is still smiling and waving to the cameras. I sincerely hope that he will reflect upon his actions during the period that he will be punished for his actions. 

Jesper 30

Link to Newspaper Article: http://www.straitstimes.com/singapore/transport/sia-flight-to-shanghai-had-temporary-loss-of-power-in-both-engines-but-plane

The issue being discussed here is that passengers on a Singapore Airlines (SIA) flight bound for Shanghai had a bit of a scare when both engines experienced a temporary loss of power amid bad weather. The pilots followed operational procedures to restore normal operation of the engines and fortunately, the flight with 182 passengers and 12 crew on board continued to Shanghai and touched down safely. 

The writer did not state any point of view so here's my point of view. In my opinion, I think that Singapore Airlines (SIA) staff should check the craft before carefully before approving it to take the flight as the SIA will be responsible for a hundred passengers, ensuring that they are safe on board. Although Singapore Airlines (SIA) do not have any history of plane disasters, they should still be careful at all times. This incident where both engines of the plane experienced a temporary loss of power amid bad weather, serves as a warning for Singapore Airlines (SIA). It will make them to be always sure that they check everything before the plane takes off. If the plane unfortunately crashed, many innocent lives will be taken away and families will be affected. I believe that Singapore Airlines (SIA) should be more careful. 

Yizhuo 2h

Title: Better IPPT scores under new format

The main idea of this aticle is how the revised individual physical proficiency test had improved scores under the new format. The new format replaced the current five-station physical fitness test of chin-ups, seat-ups, standing broad jump, 4x10m shuttle run and 2.4km run into just push-ups , seat-ups and 2.4km run , it is a move to make IPPT less painful for Nsmen, especially does who failed it and was sent for remedial lesson. More will likely pass the new IPPT according to defense minister Ng End Hen as  Nsmen are more motivated to max out each station and collect as many points as possible from the fastest time for the run and their personal best for how many push up and seat ups they could do in a minute.
After reading this article, I also agree with Dr Ng the revised test is much better for Nsmen as the exercises can be practiced anywhere for example push up and seat ups can be practice at home and for the 2.4 km run , it can be trained by running around your housing estate . Furthermore , the exercises that was scraped off requires skill to do like standing broad jump which some may not have.This is also much better for servicemens ,whose fitness level drops as they age, as the required service standards will change every three years.In my own opinion, This will also allow future Nsmen to prepare beforehand after their A-levels , making the IPPT much more manageable when they enter the army.

Source:http://news.asiaone.com/news/singapore/better-ippt-scores-under-new-format

Jesper 30

http://www.straitstimes.com/news/singapore/education/story/parents-turn-apps-homework-help-20150427

This article is about parents turning to apps to help their children for homework. Many parents are tapping on social media and apps for online tutoring for their children. Most parents think that is it very efficient for the help of their children.

In my opinion, I was appalled by how technology has grown over the years. Now I feel that technology can also help children in learning and not only for playing purposes.I think that since these apps are helpful, efficient and convenient, why not introduce these kind of concepts to the Singapore education system so that Singaporeans can improve at the rate of how technology is improving. I think that even the parents who have a traditional mindset are already accepting these apps, this proves that these apps are probably really beneficial to their children and it is worth trying. i think that when we're studying, understanding a solution to the question is the most important. This criteria is also fulfilled by the apps or social media, hence i think that these apps and social medias are actually helpful and good for children to use.

Jesper 30


Link: http://www.straitstimes.com/tech/smartphones/smartphone-more-valued-than-family-cat-for-most-users-survey-shows
 
Issue being discussed:A survey was conducted one people to see how close they were to their smartphones and the result was quite shocking. Some of them use their smartphones almost everywhere they go, even showering. Some even 'tell' their smartphone secrets that no one knows about them, even their best friends. It was quite surprising as I could not imagine how are these people going to live without their smartphones.
 
The write did not state his point of view so I shall state mine. In my opinion, nowadays many people are 'glued' to their smartphones. Smartphones have now become an important item in people's lives. However, because of this, relationships becomes cold. They spend too much time on their phones rather than communicating with one another. Sometimes, people are using their smartphones even though the other person is talking to them. I feel it's quite rude to not pay attention to the speaker as it shows that you do not give respect to that speaker. Some people are even worse, they become addicted to phones that separating themselves away from their phone is almost impossible. This could be very destructive to their social lives. I understand the importance of smartphones since so much convenience was brought by the smartphones but I think moderate usage of smartphones is then using the smartphones. If not, it would be smartphones 'using' us.

Zhou Wei (24)

http://www.straitstimes.com/singapore/environment/singapores-water-supply-where-does-it-come-from

General Information: Lower rainfall in Singapore and Malaysia is affecting Singapore's water supply. There was 25 per cent less rainfall in the first half of this year, which reduced the main source of water to Singapore's 17 reservoirs. And water levels at Johor's Linggiu Reservoir, which enables the reliable abstraction of raw water from Johor River, are at a historic low.

While Malaysia has been an important source of water for Singapore, the country has been investing in research and development to create alternative sources of water over the years. So where does Singapore get the estimated 400 million gallons a day that it consumes?

According to the national water agency PUB, Singapore had just two water sources 50 years ago. Today, there are four, and the water supply can be divided into "four national taps": local catchment water, imported water, NEWater and desalinated water.

Response: I feel that Singapore's water sources need to be increased till it can accommodate our uses by the time Malaysia and Singapore's water contract is over. I also feel that our uses of water can also be decreased as we living in this country where we do not face water shortage will naturally be not as water saving as other countries, resulting in large amounts of water being wasted away. I also feel that by the time the contract with Malaysia ended, science technology would have been advanced enough to have another national tap created, so as to meet all our needs even if it did not rain for a long time.

Lee Xin Yi (13)

Term 3 Week 5 post
Article name: China escalator swallows toddler's mother
Article link: http://www.straitstimes.com/asia/east-asia/china-escalator-swallows-toddlers-mother-report
  This article is about a woman who was killed after she plunged through flooring over an escalator in a Chinese department store called, Anliang, in Jingzhou, the central province of Hubei. Xiang Liujuan, 30, fell to her death after thrusting her toddler to safety. They were stepping off the escalator while a panel in the floor gave way. As she fell, she pushed her son forward to ensure that he was safe and a few seconds later, she was seen disappearing downwards into the mechanism. Firefighters took more than four hours to cut open the machine and recover the mother. It was then told that after the maintenance, the workers forget to screw back the access cover back into place.
  I was shocked and yet touched after seeing this article. Since the worker already knew that the escalator cannot be use, they should have stop it from operating and stop customers from using the escalator. However, they did not but continue to operate the escalator despite knowing the danger. So did they actually thought of the shoppers safety? On the other hand, the actions of the mother touched me. She sacrifice herself to death upon knowing the danger infront of her. She even remembered or thought of pushing her son to safety and save him from felling to death with her. Mother love is so great at that point of time and I could clearly see how much the mother love her son. Sacrifices are what parents normally do but sacrificing a life is not everyone dare to. It takes a lot of courage to die for someone, especially when you can still survive for many years. The son should be proud of his mother when he grew up and I hope that he will not blamed himself for causing his mother's death. When linking this incident to Singapore, I felt real proud for living in Singapore. When there's maintenance, workers will ensure that everything is out of reach from others and when escalators are operating, they would ensure the others' safety at all times and will do immediate actions such as condoning off the escalators when they found out there's something wrong or any dangers. Singapore is so much safer compared to China.

Lee Xin Yi (13)

Term 3 Week 3 post
Article name: Displays of racial harmony
Article link: http://www.straitstimes.com/singapore/display-of-racial-harmony

  This article is about more than 2300 people from during ethnic groups, including President Tony Tan, local politicians and foreign diplomats, came into to watched cultural performance at Marina Bay Sands on 12/7. It was the 12th Inter Racial Inter Religious Harmony Nite, that celebrates racial and religious harmony.
  This event is a wonderful event that brings people from different race together and celebrate racial and religious harmony. Racial harmony is something that all of us can be proud of. Our founding father, Mr Lee Kuan Yew, said before, Singapore is not made up of Chinese, Malays, Indians. It consist of everyone. No matter what happened, we should come together, stand together, and survive together. Without Mr Lee, Singapore may not be as equal like today. People of different races may not be wiling to work together as one nation, one Singapore. This shows the importance of racial harmony. If Singapore was separated into many different groups, riots will be everywhere. We should continue to celebrate this important and significant harmony, not only just during racial harmony day, but treasure it, as it is not something that can be built so easily.

Lee Xin Yi (13)

Term 3 Week 1 post
Article name: Man who smoked in train identified (03/07/2015)
Article link: http://www.straitstimes.com/singapore/courts-crime/man-who-smoked-in-train-identified
  This summary of this article is that on 2/7/15, SMRT operator has identified one of the two men who smoked in the train. A video of them smoking was posted on Facebook last month. They were seen passing cigarette to each other and taking turns puffing on it. It was at night in the Bukit Batok area.
  I feel that the two men should own up and be responsible for their own actions instead of just waiting to be identified by the train operators. As stated in the article, smoking is indeed a brazen act and anyone found smoking can be fined up to $1000 in court, $500 for settling out of court. These two men were indeed being very selfish and inconsiderate. Smoking not only affects their own health, second hand smoke will also affect the other commuters health. Also, they still want to smoke and rebel the rules of no smoking in the train. They should learn how to control and not feel that since there were less commuters and hence they can smoke. We should think for others before doing any actions. It is also good that other commuters stood forward to alert others about this incident, and recording the entire thing. Even though they did not report the incident to the station staff immediately, but their courage helped the operators to find them more easily. After all, we should obey the rules at all times and not break them as our juniors will follow us and when they grow up, they will do the same.

Zhou Wei (24)

http://www.straitstimes.com/singapore/courts-crime/alleged-murder-plot-mastermind-targeted-wifes-lover

General Information: SINGAPORE - A man targeted in a failed murder plot had an affair with the wife of the alleged mastermind of the conspiracy, a court heard on Tuesday.

Singapore permanent resident Aye Maung Maung Thet, 28, was allegedly tasered by two men in a multi-storey carpark in Pasir Ris last month, but managed to attract the attention of passers-by. His attackers fled before the grisly killing could be carried out.

Win Kyaw Kyaw Aung, 29, is believed to have been behind a plot to murder the engineer on June 20. He has since fled the country.

Response: I feel that the man who plotted the murder should exercise more self control and not trying to get his friends to commit the perfect crime together. He should think about the future more plus it is not only the man he is trying to kill's fault, not totally. Killing someone does not make him be able to make the affair be something that never happened. Instead, it will only ruin his future and be sent to jail. His wife also should be blamed as despite knowing that she is being married to someone, she still went on to see someone else meaning that even if the man is killed, she would most likely go and search for someone else again. The man who plotted it should be smarter. I read an article about a man successfully have his sweet revenge back on his wife. He took six months to settle his next place to live, gather evidence, prepare to sue her and a lawyer and on her birthday, she tried to send him away but he lied and came back, called all her relatives and using celebrate her birthday as an excuse, caught her in the act, literally, in front of all of them and acting like it is an accident.

Chew Jing Heng 25

3/8 
http://www.channelnewsasia.com/news/singapore/unprecedented-low-levels/2025108.html

Issue being discussed:
A critical component for Singapore to import water from Malaysia, the Linggiu Reservoir, is facing an all-time low in water levels and this is a source of concern, according to Environment and Water Resources Minister Vivian Balakrishnan on Monday 3/8.

Opinion:
From Facebook post regarding this news, a netizen told people to "Please save water"
I agree with him. Water is a very precious resource, and we might not know when we would run out of clean drinking water here in Singapore. We may have the 4 national taps to supply us we enough water every day, but I think we usually take water for granted. There will always be water when we on our taps, but we do not realise that without water, we are not able to do our daily activities, and we will also not be able to survive without clean drinking water as well. I think low water levels serve as a reminder to all of us that, water is precious. We need to be cautious of what we use it for, and we should never waste water. We must always learn to conserve water, and use water wisely.

Zhou Wei (24)

http://www.straitstimes.com/singapore/courts-crime/police-dogs-playing-bigger-role-in-fight-against-crime

General Information: Dogs are playing a bigger role in fighting crime here. The Singapore Police Force's K-9 Unit had a paw in cracking 222 cases last year, double the number in 2011.

The unit's commanding officer, Superintendent Koh Lye Meng, attributed the rise to "a better understanding" of what police dogs can do, through talks and presentations given to the rest of the force and other Home Team agencies.

This better appreciation of the dogs' capabilities means that the dogs, which are on standby 24 hours a day, will be activated more quickly.

Response: I feel that dogs are really useful and kind. They are loyal pets, crime fighting partners and also can help people who are blind to find their way home. I think that sometimes humans are even lower than dogs. Dogs are kind natured unlike humans which thinks of how to plot to harm or get something through underhand methods. I think that the method of using dogs to sniff drugs out will be very useful as they are able to detect it well, having nose that is 44 times more sensitive to smell compared to our nose. The cases of drug trafficking they found increased with the help of dogs. I think that we should train more dogs to help fight crime as they are better in some ways and can make Singapore safer and a better place.

Zhou Wei (24)

http://www.straitstimes.com/singapore/courts-crime/orchard-road-serial-pickpocket-and-women-involved-in-loanshark-activities

General Information: SINGAPORE - A serial pickpocket, believed to be responsible for several cases of theft along Orchard Road, has been nabbed by the police.

The 28-year-old man was arrested on Sunday, after a woman made a police report that her handphone and other personal items were taken from her backpack. She said the suspect had bumped into her and walked away hurriedly.

Policemen from the Tanglin Division, who were on patrol subsequently located the suspect less than three hours after the report was made, and detained him.

Response: I feel that one should not be involved with loan sharks by all means. Lending money form loan sharks is illegal and one could be in jail for getting involved. I think that even if you desperately need money for something, loan sharks should not be an option because in the end you will never stop needing money and you might need more as the loan just keeps on increasing. The two women who got involved should have known the risk of unable to pay the money back. I also feel that the person who pickpocket people should turn over a new leaf as pickpocket is not a way of making a living and is illegal. No matter the possible reasons, it is still illegal to steal other people's money. Pickpocket will just obstruct your future.

Zhou Wei (24)

http://www.straitstimes.com/lifestyle/entertainment/k-drama-superstar-bae-yong-joon-weds-hundreds-of-fans-stake-out-wedding-spot

General Information: SEOUL - K-drama superstar Bae Yong Joon married singer Park Soo Jin on Monday (July 27), said South Korean reports.

Bae, 42, shared a photo of himself kneeling in front of his 29-year-old bride on Instagram, hours before the couple's 6pm nuptials at Sheraton Grande Walkerhill hotel in Seoul, said Yonhap News Agency and Korea Herald.

"I'm on my way to the venue of the wedding ceremony. I'm nervous and thrilled," he wrote. "Sorry for being unable to be with you."

Response: I feel that his fans should respect his own personal life. On Monday, hundreds of his Japanese fans braved the rain to wait along the road leading to the hotel and around the wedding hall. Many of Bae's Japanese fans arrived in South Korea to see the wedding from a week ago and rooms of the hotel were fully reserved. Even though he might be a famous person, he still need his privacy. I feel that the fans is a bit bothering him as wedding is a very serious event and not something that they can just arrive and barge in just to see or get a signature from him. Despite that, there are still fans who are not like that and just wanted to see him be happy. I also hope that the fans will not follow him to his honeymoon as he would feel pressurized as there are constantly many people observing them.

Koh Yi Ling (12) for August 4



Article title: Man's leg amputated in escalator incident

http://www.straitstimes.com/asia/east-asia/mans-leg-amputated-in-escalator-incident?xtor=CS3-20

This article is about a man whose leg was amputated after meeting an escalator incident. He was cleaning the steps on the moving escalator when the floor panel suddenly gave way and the mop was stuck in between the gap, following by his left leg. The shopping mall had closed down and this escalator incident is the third high profile escalator related tragedy in the week.

Many incidents regarding the escalator had happened in China, and I feel that we should all take note. If we feel the panel of the escalator is shaking, we should try to get off the escalator immediately and inform the counter about it, and also warn other shoppers to be alert and if best, not to take the escalator which would be the safest option. If all shoppers take note, we can all help and prevent another escalator related incident from happening again.

Koh Yi Ling (12) for 21 July



Article link: http://www.straitstimes.com/singapore/elderly-woman-slapped-in-video-was-beaten-often-say-neighbours

Article title:
Elderly Women slapped in video: Police investigating woman for allegedly assaulting mother

In this article, a police report has been lodged regarding a 25 year old women who slapped and assaulted her 58 year old mother outside a flat in Lower Delta Road. A video of the incident which was uploaded on YouTube shows the frail looking woman sweeping the corridor outside a HDB flat with two other women watching her. The neighbour who videoed the process said he had witnessed similar slapping incidents before almost daily for the past six months.

I feel that the other two women should not treat her this way. No matter what, they should have respect for the elderly and not let her sweep the floor and abuse her. Every elderly or anyone deserves to be respected no matter what they have done. Furthermore, the one who slapped the mother is her own daughter. The mother brought the daughter up and took care of her since young, but the pay back the daughter gave was to abuse the mother like this. I feel that the daughter should definitely not do this and she should be the one to take care of her mother in turn she grows up but she is instead doing the opposite. A daughter should be filial towards her parents, and not disrespect and look down on them. If I were there, I would definitely stop her.

 

 

 

Chew Jing Heng 25

19/7

Issue being discussed: 
Police confirmed on Tuesday that a report has been lodged against a 25-year-old woman who slapped and allegedly assaulted her 58-year-old mother outside a flat in Lower Delta Road. The man who filmed the viral video, Mr Juani, had witnessed the incident for 6 months before reporting it to the police.

Opinions: 
Quoted from the comments section from YouTube from a YouTube user.
"It's not right to just be quiet when we see an injustice or abusive act in from to four eyes. As much as we do not want to interfere with our neighbours domestic abuse,ugh cruel acts need to be reported to the authority," 
I agree with her. This is exactly what Mr Juani did, and I am relieved that such abusive acts have been reported to the relevant authorities (although he could report it earlier).Sometimes, we really do not want to interfere when our neighbours have conflicts. However, we need to know that there is a need to step in when things are beyond control. In this case, if Mr Juani did not post the viral video, I believe that the daughter may be still abusing her mother, causing very serious injuries to the mother. Therefore, I support Mr Juani for his actions.
Next, the daughter has to know that her mother had brought her into this world. Even though the mother may have done something wrong, the daughter should never had slept the mother. I think that the daughter should instead, be grateful for what her mother has done for her, especially when raising a child is not easy. There was no rights for the daughter to slap her mother at all. I am definitely glad that police has started investigating on this case.

Chew Jing Heng 25

5/7

Issue being discussed:
A Red Lions skydiver was involved in a midair drama yesterday when he had to cut off his parachute while descending to the Padang during the rehearsal for the National Day Parade. Fortunately, he managed to deploy his back-up parachute before landing safely on the parade grounds.
Opinions:
Comment by a Facebook used regarding this news:
" I was there at the Padang. It was a frightening moment "
I would say that even though I was not at the Padang for the rehearsals, I believe that it would be definitely frightening to see things go wrong. Safety always is the first priority, especially in such dangerous performances where one may just lose one's life if something goes wrong. I believe that everyone would enjoy the red lions performances, but sometimes, we do forget that they are actually risking their lives to do so. If both of the parachutes fail, the consequences will definitely be disastrous. Moreover, these red lions had trained really hard to  put up spectacular performances for us. We have to understand and appreciate that, and keep in mind that safety is the most important priority.

Chew Jing Heng 25

26/4 

http://www.straitstimes.com/asia/south-asia/nepal-earthquake-over-1000-dead-after-79-magnitude-quake

Issue being discussed:
A powerful earthquake struck Nepal and sent tremors through northern India on Saturday, killing over 1,000 people, toppling a 19th-century tower in the capital Kathmandu and touching off a deadly avalanche on Mount Everest. 

Opinion: I believe that in times that other countries are in crisis, we need to lend a helping hand. 
Quoted from a netizen from Facebook, "All it take is for every Singaporean to donate $1 to Red Cross Singapore. We can easily raise more than $5 millions for Nepal as our population stand at 5.47 millions. If only everyone donate $1. So what are we waiting for? Donate now & stop behaving like stunned vegetables."
I agree with this netizen's point of view.
I believe no one would never want natural disasters to happen to us, as there would always be negative impacts on us. In this earthquake,I feel that it will be never easy for people to lose their loved ones, especially in a natural disaster. They may experience emotional trauma, as this earthquake is unexpected and the impact on them is really huge. We can consider ourself lucky, almost free of any natural disasters, but we definitely need to help these people, who lost their loved ones and are experiencing an emotional trauma.  Therefore, we have to help them, whether emotionally, physically or financially. We might never know that such a small help, will cause a great impact on their lives.

Koh Yi Ling (12) for July 7



Article link: http://www.straitstimes.com/singapore/education/does-tuition-help-or-hinder

Article title: does tuition help or hinder?

This article is about whether tuition does help to pull up a student's grade of does it just a waste of time, effort and money. A survey shows that only a third of the parents said that tuition managed to help pull up their child's grade. Another study showed that too much private tuition could hurt performance and some who spent more time on tuition failed worse than others. Thus, we really need to look into the matter whether tuition really helps or not.

I feel that whether tuition helps or not will be based on the student him or her self. Some people can cope better with tuition as they have more practice and they can ask their tuition for help and maybe learn topics ahead of time so that they have a longer time to understand a topic with the help of both the school and the tuition center but some prefer to study by their own and spend more time revising on the past topics. However, for me, I feel that tuition will take up too much of my time and I feel that it is pointless to learn topics ahead of time if you cannot even catch on the topic before. Thus, I feel that tuition actually hinders, not help.

 

Chew Jing Heng 25

8/5 


Issue being discussed:
The free SG50 commemorative Lego sets given by the Ministry of Education to students, were actually found to be sold on online platforms for more than a $100 dollars. The gift, meant for students from primary level to junior college level, commemorates Singapore's 50 years of independence and is named "Building My SG: Reflect, Celebrate, Inspire". The Straits times had found more than 17 sets being sold online.

Opinion:
Although the writer did not state his opinion, he/she had quoted a comment from a netizen.
 One Facebook user Ken Yeoh said: "When there is a demand, the market forces will be at work. Just hope that we don't deprive our own children of the fun they can get by forcing them to give up their sets for parents to sell. That's sad."
I agree with this Facebook user. As only students of Singapore will be able to receive this special limited edition Lego sets, there will be many people out there wanting to get their hands on these Lego sets as well. One example are the fans of Lego. They would be willing to pay any amount of money to get their hands on these sets, and therefore some parents may take this opportunity to earn some money.Selling this Lego set can fetch them at least $100, and to some parents, it may be a day worth of work. However, I believe parents must know that these Lego sets are specially designed and given to students of Singapore, the future leaders of Singapore, not for parents to sell these online for an opportunity to make money. Parents definitely do not have the rights to do so.
In conclusion, as students here in Singapore, we should learn to treasure this Lego set specially designed and made for us. Parents should also learn to not sell this Lego set online to make money as it deprives their children of fun.

Koh Yi Ling (12) for May 24



Link to article:  http://www.straitstimes.com/singapore/beer-promoters-and-stall-holders-seen-trying-to-work-around-recent-nea-ban

Article title: Beer Promoters and stall holders seen trying to work around recent NEA ban

This article is about beer promoters who actually can no longer work in hawker centers. They have found a way around restrictions by the National  Environment Agency (NEA) and now they dress in plainclothes and work for the drinks stores by helping to order and as they serve, they sit down to talk to the customers.

I feel that the beer promoters and stall holders should abide by the law and not try to find more ways and change their tactics and continue to work as beer promoters. The NEA has banned beer promoters from working in hawker centers so as to prevent touting, and this ban is for the good of the public. Thus, instead of going against the law, I feel they should just abide the law.

 

Koh Yi Ling (12) for May 11



Link to article: http://www.straitstimes.com/news/singapore/courts-crime/story/man-pleads-guilty-slapping-teen-blogger-amos-yee-sentencing-will-b#1

Article title:
Man gets 3 weeks' jail for slapping blogger Amos Yee

In this article, a man, Neo Ghim Huah, was sentenced to 3 weeks jail after slapping Amos Yee outside the state courts last month. He explained in court that he wanted to teach Amos Yee a lesson as he found him disrespectful to Mr Lee Kuan Yew in the video he had posted. He restrained himself but he confronted Amos Yee in his third court appearance. He deliberately committed the offence as he wanted the assault to be publicized so that the world would know he was being taught a lesson.


What the man did was wrong and he should not have slapped Amos Yee. I know that he may have done it due to the anger he had of Amos Yee disrespecting our founding father, but the victim should be taught a lesson through the law, and he was too rash. However, the actions of Mr Neo also shows how he deeply respects Mr Lee Kuan Yew and I feel that everyone should be like him and be grateful for what Mr Lee Kuan Yew has done for us to be where we are now.