05 January 2015

Much Ado About Jubilee Babies

The Jubilee Year of Singapore's independence has arrived.
Minister in the Prime Minister's Office Grace Fu Hai Yien personally presented the SG50 Baby Jubilee Gift to the parents of the first baby born in 2015, with the media in attendance.

The following day, she personally presented the first commemorative SG50 birth certificate to the parents of the first baby born in 2015 to be registered at KK Women's and Children's Hospital, again with the media in attendance.
The special birth certificate came with a message signed off by Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong. It read:

"Congratulations on the arrival of [name]. [Name] has been born in a very special year — the 50th anniversary of Singapore's independence.
Every child is precious. We work hard to give them better lives, and raise them to be the best that they can be. We place our hopes and dreams in them and love them unconditionally. Into their hands we will entrust Singapore's future.
Our parents and grandparents worked hard to make this a beautiful home for all of us. They built a country which nurtures our children, and gives everyone every opportunity to fulfil his potential. I hope that baby [name] and his generation will build on this, to make Singapore an even better country for us all.
My very best wishes to you and your family!"

Minister Is So Free
I'm amazed that a cabinet minister, who is paid more than $1 million a year, can afford the time to present the commemorative birth certificate to the parents at KK Women's and Children's Hospital. Who else from her ministry was instructed to accompany her on her political public relations act?

Are Babies Born in 2015 Special?
Mr Lee and his Government consider (presumably citizen) babies born in 2015 to be special, simply by virtue of their being born in the 50th anniversary of the country's independence.

They are mistaken.

Every citizen baby is important because he or she forms the human resource upon which the country will depend in the future, provided he or she doesn't choose to leave for greener pastures overseas.

Citizen babies born this year are no different from citizen babies born last year or next year or any other year. All of them are important for our future.

There is no reason for the Government to single out the citizen babies born this year for special attention. It's a silly, wasteful, self-serving exercise.

A person is not really special to the country until he or she has done something worthwhile for the country. Until then, it's much ado about nothing.

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