In my previous posting on the topic, I discussed Michael Hwang's speech urging lawyers to less apathetic and work for the interest of the community[Link]. I speculated on the causes of this apathy among Singaporeans. Many Singaporeans don't seem to care what happens to other Singaporeans. Some of you might feel the lack of reaction and outrage among Singaporeans for having political detainees locked for decades and bankrupted for their views can be rationalised by the tumultous politics of the 60s that they are actually not so uncaring and ignorant but pragmatic. Optimists among you may believe if something big happens to our society people will stand up when it matters and all this talk about apathy is overblown - Singaporeans are more caring that what critics make them out to be. These optimists are wrong. Singaporeans are really apathetic, many really practise "mind your own business" religiously and will simply continue doing what they do no matter what happens around them. Don't believe? Try dying in front of Singaporeans to see if you get a reaction!
When you see no reaction from Singaporeans to govt policy, decisions, mega-losses by Temasek & GIC and countless price hikes, it is not because they think the govt has done nothing wrong or they have accepted those losses as honest mistakes - they have simply don't think and don't care.... period. They just mind their own business. The lack of reaction cannot be interpreted as Singaporeans being contented and generally happy. The lack of reaction is the result of extreme apathy. People don't care, they mind their own business.....their fellow Singaporeans can just drop dead in front of them and they can continue eating their chicken like nothing has happened. It is very sad what has happened to Singaporeans - almost nothing can move them and wake them.