Friday, March 25, 2011

Who you're calling uncultured yo?

Just when I was at lost at what I should blog tonight, out came little Miss Samantha from the blue. Or should I say, from Holland Village.

The story goes that on one beautiful Wednesday morning, which was today the 24th of March 2011, a girl who identified herself as Samantha gave the radio a call and ranted about how "low-class" Singaporean heartlanders should stay away from Holland V because people from the heartlands are definitely "not cultured".
(You can listen to her rants here and here. Read more about the story )

I'm no Singaporean (am still pretty much a Malaysian actually :p) and I'm still trying to grasp the concept of what the heartlands actually mean (I know it is an integral part of Singapore's identity and it refers to housing neighbourhoods created by HDB) so you could say that I'm pretty much the last suitable person to stand up to her but looking at how ignorant she can get, it really pisses me off. And besides, I have many Singaporean friends who come from the heartlands and the last thing that I would associate them with is the word "UNCULTURED".

From what I could gather from the short 6 minutes she was on air, Miss Samantha based her arguments of how heartlanders are "low-class" and "uncultured" on the way they dress (singlets, weird coloured hair, slippers), the way they talk (loudly), the way they shop (buy cheap stuff at Bugis), the way they don't earn enough to eat laksa at Holland Village, how they love to shove and stuff like that, you know, the stuff that you would say if you are major stereotyping people. And she goes on as far to say that heartlanders should be kept in heartlands and not visit Holland Village because they are "uncultured".

Is it me, or do I smell a dumb blonde around?

Firstly, making assumptions of people's level culture based on where they stay is just stupid. It's like saying all Singaporeans are kiasu just because they come from Singapore or that all Malaysians are Malays just because they come from Malaysia. It's people like her who caused millions of Jews to die during the holocaust and millions of black Africans to suffer during the apartheid in South Africa.

You can't just lump everyone into a category and assume they act the same way just because a few of them do. Each and everyone of us is different, you know. How would you feel if I say that everyone in Holland Village are drunkards just because I saw a few drunk people in Holland Village when I visited there? Pretty unfair right?

And saying that people who does not dress as nicely as you have no culture?

Only people like Ris Low or Paris Hilton would say something like that. You know, those bimbos that when you hit them on the head, it could produce an echo that is even louder than what you can get at the Grand Canyon?

Culture is not something that you can measure physically by seeing how people dress. Of course, I don't deny that how you present yourself do matters, but I for one believe that when it comes to being cultured, it is what is inside that matters more.

Like what I experienced once on the MRT, for example. I was standing nearby to two women who were sitting on the reserved seats and it was one of the peak hours where all seats are occupied. One of the women was dressed  rather nicely, you know, with all those jewelry and stuff, those rich aunties, you might say, while the other was one who looked pretty much like a foreign maid.

When the train stopped at the next station, an elderly entered carrying loads of grocery on her hands. And guess who gave up her seat to the elderly? Rather than the nicely dressed lady that was supposed to be "cultured", it was the foreign maid that stood up and offered her seat with a smile. And the rich auntie just sat there like nothing happened

I guess it's "culture" to feign ignorance at all times.

Besides, we don't call the Japanese cultured people because they always dress in tuxedos or night gowns. We call them cultured because of their mannerism and personalities. We call them cultured because they are nice. Which is Miss Samantha clearly lacked. Being nice. So she's not cultured as she said, period.

And who cares if we dress in singlets and slippers anyway? Like my dad used to say, as long as I have cash in my wallet and I am able to pay for what I eat, who cares? I am sure that you prefer a customer in singlet who spends a lot at your shop rather than one in tuxedo who comes in your shop, take a look and don't spend even a cent right?

But of course, I personally would not be able to explain what prompted Miss Samantha to behave in such a way. Stereotypes, after all, needs to be taught and cultivated from young. Perhaps it's her family that brought her up to think in such a way. Or perhaps she's raised in such a closed environment that she rarely mixes with people outside from her comfort zone.

Which is quite sad actually because she would be so caught up with this delusional self righteous thinking of hers to actually experience the full color of life as it is. I'm predicting that she would be so afraid to mix with the so called heartlanders and the only friends she would have are those who think in a same way as her. Bigots, if you may.

And what's even sadder is that in days to come, if her identity is revealed, she would be harassed and tormented for the rest of her days, given that heartlanders are as "uncultured" as she said.

What I do know is that from my point of view, she's the one that is being uncultured for having such a closed minded twisted stereotypical self righteous view on her fellow countrymen. As far as I'm concerned, being cultured means being open to diversity and the willingness to accept others as they are and not subjecting them to your point of view.

And if she already has such an extreme view purely based on where people stay, god knows what other beliefs she might have regarding people of different race and gender.

So who are you calling uncultured yo, Miss Samantha?

P/s: The authors at does not condone any acts of violence or insults back at Miss Samantha. We are cultured people after all so we would not resort to such low tactics. However, if you do fee that you want to get back at her, there's this event going on at Facebook where they are trying to get a 1000 people to go down to Holland V in their singlets and shorts to show Miss Samantha who's boss. Do check out their FB page . Til then, tootles 

P/p/s: What are your personal thoughts about the incident? Feel free to drop a comment down below! 

EDIT: False Alarm! It's a prank.

EDIT 2: Apparently the recordings are now all taken down from the website. I smell something fishy. Some conspiracy going on?


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