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Opinion

Our writers get to let loose and produce think pieces about stuff that bothers them, matters to them, or are critical in modern life.

A telling of gratitude through the imperfections of instant film

A telling of gratitude through the imperfections of instant film

With the press of a single button, a piece of film slowly makes its way to the world from the inner workings of my camera. It is exciting, the brief 15 seconds that follow. As I wait for the image to develop, I take the time to try and create a connection with the person I’ve just photographed. I crack up a short conversation. Within 15 seconds, I establish an easy doorway to a potential friendship. That is the power of an instant camera. There is beauty in the imperfect nature of processed instant film. As the world in 2019 raves…
Sustainable meat may mark the end of the meat industry as we know it

Sustainable meat may mark the end of the meat industry as we know it

With the advent of technology and resources, we have evolved from passive to active consumers. Growing concerns over the environmental impact and sustainability of the meat industry have got many meat eaters realising that cutting back on meat may have more benefits than they previously considered. The proportionate – if not significantly higher – rate of meat consumption to the rise in population means that eventually, demand for meat will surpass that of its supply. The answer to all – sustainable meat. Plant-based meat was met with resounding success, despite its limited accessibility. Meanwhile, cultured meat looks to be the…
Perception of Mother Tongue in Singapore (and why it can be limiting)

Perception of Mother Tongue in Singapore (and why it can be limiting)

The Mother Tongue has always occupied an awkward position in Singaporean society. A simple search on the official Ministry of Education’s (MOE) website leads to an expectedly idealistic dictum: “The learning of Mother Tongue Language (MTL) is a lifelong endeavour. The MTL policy seeks to nurture our students to become effective communicators in MTL and supports our students to study MTL to as high a level as possible.” At the same time, however, with different races in Singapore, the English language asserts its dominance as a common ground to facilitate communication. Easily observable on a societal level, English — as…
Behind The Scenes Of Voluntourism: The Perspective Unbeknownst To Volunteers

Behind The Scenes Of Voluntourism: The Perspective Unbeknownst To Volunteers

Is volunteer tourism a boon or bane? It is a much-needed debate on an emerging trend – one that many turn a blind eye to. Volunteer tourism, also known as voluntourism, is tourism with an emphasis on work contribution and helping out at local organisations. Volunteers say voluntourism is about a sense of moral duty and attaining a transformative experience for themselves, but research by experts in the field of sustainable tourism –  such as Donald Brightsmith and Eliza Raymond – shows that it may be doing more harm than good. Like everything else, voluntourism is becoming increasingly industrialised; with…
How The NUS Voyeurism Incident Brought Social Issues To Light

How The NUS Voyeurism Incident Brought Social Issues To Light

You would have definitely heard of the voyeurism case that happened at the National University of Singapore (NUS) by now, but here’s why this case speaks to the masses. What happened In case you’ve missed it, on Friday, 19 April 2019, third-year NUS student Monica Baey revealed on her Instagram story that a fellow student – Nicholas Lim – filmed her while she was showering in the Eusoff Hall toilet last November. In the stories that followed, she explains how – despite the irrefutable evidence against her perpetrator – Nicholas got away with a 12-month conditional police warning, compulsory apology…
Is This The Endgame For The Original Avengers Cast?

Is This The Endgame For The Original Avengers Cast?

“We are in the endgame now” is the pivotal line by Doctor Strange in Avengers: Infinity War. Indeed, we too are approaching the final stages of the massive saga that has lasted more than a decade. The question is, does that also ring true for the actors in the film? Like the Marvel film series, the actors portraying these characters have gone through a long journey. Robert Downey Jr. (RDJ) has been portraying his titular character, Iron Man, for the longest time among the original cast. Even before Iron Man, RDJ was in the film industry for a long time,…
Self-Driving Cars: Ready, Set, Go?

Self-Driving Cars: Ready, Set, Go?

Over a decade ago, Mobileye could hardly conceptualize of a future where cars would drive themselves. Today, they are at the forefront of a transportation revolution. In a meeting with ASIC Manager Mois Navon, one of the key people blazing the trail at Mobileye, the discussion around the history and progress of Mobileye threw up fresh ethical issues that every self-respecting commuter should be aware of today. Mois Navon cuts a stately, almost imposing, figure, but his welcoming smile and warm tone could make you believe for a moment that he was inviting you into his very home. This is…
They’re Here, They’re Queer — No Fear

They’re Here, They’re Queer — No Fear

Queerness scares people – that’s the truth. But the truth is rarely pure and never simple. What does it mean to be queer? If you wanted the pure and simple truth, then it just refers to being anything other than heterosexual or cisgender. But the world we live in doesn’t abide by dictionary definitions – neither does judgement nor discrimination. To be queer is to be invisible, to be seen through pejorative glances, to be the antipode of normal. In the small city-state of Singapore like anywhere else, the history of queerness is the history of marginalisation. Although many assume…
It’s Not Coming Home: Thoughts from Long-Suffering England Fan

It’s Not Coming Home: Thoughts from Long-Suffering England Fan

Once again, it did not come home, but this time there was solace rather than sorrow in defeat. 24 June 2004. I still remember the date vividly. It is a date that has stayed with me throughout the years. It is the date of my first real heartbreak as a football fan. Unbeknownst to my then eight-year-old self, this was just the start of many harrowing years that were to follow in my journey as a supporter of the England national football team. I was just a shy and unassuming young boy, with barely any knowledge of the world around…
Say What: How Edmund Dealt With Hearing Loss

Say What: How Edmund Dealt With Hearing Loss

Listening to music while we commute, the chatter of friends, and the general ambiance of a crowded office are all pretty mundane detail for many of us. Yet, trying to come to terms with our world of sound slowly turning silent, is something completely unfathomable altogether. Meet Edmund Koh, who was only formally diagnosed with hearing impairment at the age of 17, thanks to the pre-enlistment medical checkup for Singapore’s National Service (well thanks, NS!). Although he faced difficulties in hearing his teachers back in his old school days, he coped by choosing seats closer to the front of the classroom…
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