Sometimes I wonder why these letters get published on Straits Times forum.

30 Aug 2007

Don’t burn so much hell money – how about fund transfers from the living to the dead?

I AM concerned over the poor air quality during the Chinese seventh month.
I understand and respect the fact that a huge proportion of our citizens place importance in the burning of hell money as a form of respect to their ancestors and deities.

However, with the current global emphasis on saving the environment, I see a pressing need to make some suggestions.

In our mortal world, we now have credit cards, cheques and several forms of remittances (SWIFT and telegraphic transfers). I appeal to religious leaders, whose followers practise the burning of hell money, to study the implications of alternative hell fund transfers.

I see these alternatives as a win-win situation for the living and the deceased. The latter stand to receive an infinite amount of hell funds with the mere burning of say, one hell cheque or one hell credit card, thus saving a whole stack of paper from the bonfire, or the religious leaders could run a form of remittance facility. With the technological advances that we now have, I am confident that where there’s a will, there’s a way.

It is timely to set a good example to our younger generation to practise what we have been preaching to other nations struggling to curb the slash-and-burn method to clear jungles and forests and that is, to reduce, to reuse and to recycle.

Lai Ee Sa (Mdm)

But we have some technical issue here. We know we can do internet banking in our world. But how do we know downstair allow internet transfer? Do they have internet to begin with? Is the network stable? Do they have [email protected]?

Interesting plan. But got some minor issue that needs to be sorted out. Will the writer volunteer to go down to check if all the infrastructure is in place?

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31 Aug 2007

Why create stress for crabs and frogs sold at eating places?

MY FAMILY and I often frequent the new coffeeshop near our place in Canberra Road.
Last week, we went there as usual to have our dinner. A woman took our orders and promptly went back to the stall.

Then, I caught a glimpse of frogs moving about in a plastic tank. There were also the commonly seen crabs, immobilised by raffia strings.

Knowing that the animals were stressed killed all the appetite I had for my dinner.

I have become a vegetarian for animal welfare reasons and so it was very upsetting to see the frogs and crabs on display as food at a heartland coffeeshop where families, both young and old, gather for a good meal.

My animal-loving parents felt disturbed too.

The frogs may or may not be kept in an unclean or cramped condition, but this does not dispel the fact that they live and breathe like us and deserve to be treated with respect – as an animal and not just a source of food.

If the people who order the dish could see how their dinner is being prepared, would they still be able to stomach what is on the plate?

It does not take rocket science to know that animals can feel stress and pain too.

So why can’t we just spare these crabs and frogs the stress?

If other types of meat are subjected to regulated slaughter and sold chilled in supermarkets, I am sure frog legs and crab meat can be done likewise.

I ask that we be compassionate to these animals before they die for our eating pleasure by not putting them in eating places for an unknown period of time and subjecting them to unsupervised killing practices.

Lee Poh Ling (Ms)

Then how? Ban meat and force everyone to turn vegetarian? But recent research shows that plants do have stress too. So how? Eat air? Hmmm….

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Seriously don’t know what to make out of all these letters to Straits Times Forum. Every week we see funny emails which makes you wonder why people write such email to begin with. And why the editors actually publish these letters. You mean there isn’t any better letters?

OK, don’t get me started on Stomp. It’s even worst there.