I REFER TO the letter "Demands that cannot be met" (CN, June 24) from Emily Gan who said that parishioners demand too much when poorer countries make do with much less. The freedom to practise the faith was cited as something to be thankful of and we should not demand or expect more. The letter continued that we should be thankful relative to the suffering experienced by poorer countries.

If we accept Ms Gan's selective perception then we should all conform to poorer countries and live as they live, which is absurd.

The point is not to be like the poorer countries. The poorer countries, in turn, are all striving to become first world. Why should we become third world? It is only logical that those of first world enjoy the fruits of the level attained.

The human animal thrives on the class system, so long as that system is predicated on money and achievement, not on pedigree. The human desire for status generates wealth, contributes to the gross national product, and creates jobs. It is one of the engines that drives the wheels of commerce.

It presents goals and it provides the hope that anyone can rise to the top who has the intellect and the gumption. What Ms Gan decries is part and parcel of the system - a better life, an easier life. There is nothing wrong with desiring something better, provided no law is broken or religious tenet violated - it reflects the freedom to move from one level to another; for example, from an attap hut to HDB, from HDB to landed property. This is the condition of progress.

Dudley Au

Singapore 248238

Share this post

Submit to FacebookSubmit to Google PlusSubmit to Twitter