Not long ago, an Internet user with a rather provocative and racist nickname wrote a review of a hotpot restaurant on a local food site.
The review stood out because not only was it the single negative review of the eatery, it was peppered with racist comments.
The reviewer showed no understanding of food, not just Chinese food, but any food, and clearly the review was not about food but was a disguised attempt to heap scorn on a certain group of people.
I am not in any way associated with the owner of the hotpot restaurant which is operated by people from China, but felt compelled to email the food site to alert them of my concerns. The offensive review was eventually removed.
Singapore is a melting pot with a large mix of various people originating from lands far and near.
While there are lots of variances between different people one should not feed one’s prejudices and believe the statements being brandished about regarding stereotypes. Very often the conviction that certain people are like this and certain others are like that are just myths or minor incidents blown out of proportion.
This small little melting pot we call home can soon become a steaming hotpot sizzling with resentment and hatred borne out of ignorance and ethocentricity.
Is that what you want?
Imagine yourself in a land as different as it is from the land of your origin – with people who look different, who don’t yet understand your language or your culture. Do you want them to look at you askance and treat you like some strange creature and use derogatory terms to refer to you?