Voices

Neighbourliness — it takes two

From

June Cheah-Nicholls

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Published: 9:25 AM, July 11, 2017

I agree that neighbourliness, a facet of social responsibility, should be part of a holistic education from young (“Inculcate a spirit of neighbourliness from young”; June 30).

It means parents not shirking their responsibilities as role models for children, who learn and emulate habits, good and bad, primarily at home. Educational attainments are not a barometer of neighbourliness, let alone good citizenry.

Graciousness, the kampung spirit, a shared identity and oneness are hallmarks of social responsibility. As societies evolve, however, and the world becomes more chaotic and globalised, the trait of self-interest would be exacerbated.

It takes two to tango, and neighbours must be on the same page. For example, a neighbour who lets his dog bark indiscriminately, despite advice and complaints, does not understand social responsibility and is stuck in a rut.

A society thus needs more than the paper chase in order to mature and be deemed cultured.