By now, you would have read about the man who tried to publicly shame a trio of Chinese Singaporeans for not giving up their seats to Muslims who were breaking their fast at Geylang Bazaar.
On May 12, Facebook user OujiAree AiraShii posted on the Complaint Singapore Facebook page that a few people whom he assumed weren’t breaking fast, were hogging seats at the eating area in the crowded bazaar.
He then called them “racist” for not giving up their seats to Muslims who needed to break their fast.
Many Singaporeans were quick to refute his post, however, with the most vocal crowd being Muslims themselves.
One user, Sean F Benji, replied: “It’s not racist. I saw many Muslims, including myself, breaking their fast while standing. Those seats are for patrons. Anybody of any race can patronise the stalls in Bazaar Ramadan.”
However, while it’s not racist to refrain from giving up your seat, it’s still a nice thought nevertheless.
In a separate post, Facebook user, Debbie Simpson Ong, wrote: “Those of you not fasting, please please please give seats in eating areas to our Muslim friends.”
While she expressed empathy that non-Muslim patrons were also hungry and wanted to eat, she pointed out that dinner was probably just one of a few meals in a day to us, while those who are fasting have spent the whole day refraining from eating and drinking.
“Just give up the seats to them,” she suggested. “We all bleed the same colour blood regardless of skin colour. Please be nice to our Muslim friends.”
She asserted: “We won’t die giving up the seats to those who need it more.”
Ong’s perspective resonated with many Muslims, who have since shared screencaps of her post.
One Facebook user, Nurdiah Idamaya shared the post and wrote: “Thank you, Aunty Debbie. Appreciate your kind thoughts.”
Another user, Nasir Bj replied to Ong’s post that fasting during Ramadan teaches Muslims to be patient and compassionate when tested, and that there was “no special treatment required”.
However, any gesture of kindness or consideration is nice to see, as he wrote: “A little bit of understanding is always welcomed and highly appreciated.”