Ah Boys to Men

This entry is in response to a particular blog post shared by a friend.

In it, the writer was presenting his arguments for making NS a voluntary service or even abolishing the whole system altogether.

The words in bold are his and my refutations below them:

1. It sets Singapore males back economically for 24 months (2 years) in the workforce. 

I would really love to see some kind of data from the writer to back up this claim.

From my personal experience, the majority of my army friends whom I knew from my NSF days (now in their 30s) are all doing pretty well both professionally and economically ever since they ORD.

Some are high-level executives, some are successful professionals (eg lawyers, engineers, auditors etc), some are top salespersons in their organizations, some are running profitable businesses, and not once did I ever hear any of them lamenting about the money that they were supposed to “lose” (according to the writer) in that 2.5 years (we need to serve an extra 4- 6 months during my time). 

2. The concept of making military service compulsory is against the basic freedom of people.

So I guess we should do away with the law against things like drunk driving. After all, isn’t it basic freedom of people to choose to booze and drive? Who cares if they knocked down a few of our loved ones along the way home.   

3. National Service reservist duties set Singapore males back FURTHER in the workforce BECAUSE THEY HAVE TO SERVE FOR 2 WEEKS PER YEAR EVEN AFTER THEY HAVE SERVED THE CONTINUOUS 2 YEARS.

This is silimar to Point 1.

When I go back for my ICT every year, I have not met a single fellow campmate who, because of the 1 to 3 weeks of training, suddenly got problems in making ends meet, and that includes those who are self-employed (like me).

And didn’t the writer know there is something called “NS Makeup Pay”?

  4. The perceived threat from Malaysia and Indonesia can be solved with a military force that is made up of those who VOLUNTARILY SIGNED UP, and it is NOT NECESSARY TO FORCE young 18 year old males to be placed in camps for 2 years of their lives.

Even now, with all our NSFs, regulars and Ns-men, we may not be able to successfully defend the country, so can he guarantee a military force made up of volunteers will be adequate both in numbers and capabilities to “solve the perceived threat” from our neighbouring countries?

5. National Service and military duties further cause Singapore’s fertility rate to decrease.

Unless he really believe that most of our younger generation are dying to get married and make babies between the age of 18-20, I don’t even think it even warrants an answer.




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