The mark of a country: My plea for compassion

Today is Boxing Day. Gifts are kept. Leftovers are stored inside the fridge. Perhaps, there is more feasting, but the end of the year is finally in sight.

I spent half of it at Pulau Ubin once more. Many families and groups cycled and hiked along the verdant and lush forest, checking out the coastal flats. It was high tide when I went. Yet it didn’t seem to deter people eager to catch a glimpse of nature and a Singapore of long ago.

My toddler fell asleep (she had tired herself running about!) and I finally had time to check my mail. Then, I saw this.

Let it be known that I am an animal lover. I love wolves and all canids. I have two cats. At Ubin, I watched the stray dogs trot about without care.

I love the Punggol dogs. A few years ago, when I visited Punggol Jetty, a small pack of dogs was there. They welcomed me and sat with my friends without any sign of aggression. I only saw wagging tails and gentleness.

So, seeing them being culled hurts. It feels like SARS all over. I adopted Meow, a kitten picked up from the streets during that fateful year, and he is with me now, a healthy and extremely affectionate tom. Cat lovers were shocked and outraged by the indiscriminate culling. Perhaps, AVA was just doing its job – but killing wasn’t the answer.

Culling the dogs is still not an answer to the problem.

What are we teaching our children? Dispose of things we hate? That animal lives are not as precious as human beings?

The mark of a country is seen in its compassion towards animals.

Are we a compassionate country?

Are we?

9 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Calizen
    Dec 26, 2011 @ 17:12:47

    Only a very few years ago, lots of Americans laughed at their fellow citizens who loved animals. We were seen as unfulfilled, and that if we had [a happy marriage/children/good family — fill in the blanks] we would not care too much about animals. Or there are always those who say that there is something wrong when people care about their animals more than fellow humans. Well, things are changing here in America. But it takes a long while. The more you pass on your compassionate feelings to others, the more you will find others to support you. There is a great network of those of us who believe we and animals all belong in the world. As long as we do not stop our efforts, I do believe this will come to be seen more and more as the right way to be.


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  4. Hawk Cut Weis
    Dec 27, 2011 @ 11:34:57


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