86 thoughts on “Singa resigns

  1. oh ok. so when are you going to remove the installations of your likeness from fort canning and dhoby ghaut?

  2. Thank you, Singa, for 30 years of dedicated service. We could have done more to be kind and gracious, but regrettably took you and your service for granted all these years. I am deeply concerned that your absence may leave a large void in our society, one that is too big for any individual to fill. I hope that your sudden decision to resign will be the impetus for the change that we all want to see in society. Failing which, we would have let you down, as we have done all these years. I hope that you will also reconsider your resignation, because we still need you. Take care, my friend.

    1. Is this a PR stunt to try reinstate Singa? No, we don’t need Singa as a courtesy mascot. It’s time he retired and was remembered fondly as a tool of the 80s. Please don’t come back as a “reboot”/ “rebranded” / “redesigned” lion.

  3. That is sad, Singa. Unfortunately, Kindness and Graciousness have little place in a meritocratic society, where people have been socially engineered to think that Kindness and Graciousness need to be “merited”as well. “If you haven’t done anything for, why should I be nice to you?”, is the paradigm that most people operate on. How unfortunate.

    So, are you being replaced by foreign talent?

  4. So what is this supposed to mean? I mean seriously, is this some kind of joke? These mascots were always kind of lame, but at least they brought a message. Today, parents are telling their kids how to get ahead, teachers are primarily concerned about the students’ grades, there’s fewer and fewer classes in school devoted to character building, especially after the primary level. No one is teaching the kids to be gracious, whether through word or action. The lion was pretty much the last thing left.

    I’m not trying to put everything on the Kindness movement. You’re right, we are responsible for our own actions. I’ve pretty much given up on the potential graciousness of Singaporeans at large, but I always believe that we can teach the children better. Even a simple, weak message by an often-ridiculed, cartoon lion is better than none. But to give up, to say that the damn lion quit, is outrageous. You may think that it’s funny, or it’s edgy, such that it brings home a stronger message, shaming people into being better, but the real thing is that you’re telling the kids that it’s done, it’s ok to quit being gracious, it’s ok to quit trying.

    Singa was a symbol, as much as people ignored the symbol they recognized that it was there. There was still hope. The idiot who thought up this post has just trampled all over that last bit of hope, and at the same time trampled on my generation’s sense of nostalgia and culture.

    Get wise, please.

    1. I would like to ask where you got your information regarding Singapore’s education system today from. Are you a teacher, a student or anyone else involved actively in the education scene? Your view of today’s education seems very ignorant and uninformed, I hope you will look op on the difference between today’s education and those of the past, especially regarding character building, before making ignorant statements as above. I, on the other hand, believe that kindness is a habit of mind, thought young starting from the adults, the parents. If the adults aren’t gracious, don’t expect their children to follow suit. If their children don’t follow suit, don’t point fingers.

  5. Thanks Singa for being a childhood icon for me and I learnt well from your movement.

    I’ll pass on your values to my children. Thanks again for the memories.

  6. Can you not retire Singa in favour of some new mascot? Seriously, as a Singaporean, I’m tired of everything changing in SG. At least keep Singa as a mascot that generations of Singaporeans can identify with!

  7. I have a feeling that this might be politicized. I wonder why Singa the Lion is a quitter when we faced all these problems.

  8. Hi Singa


    I am a parent of 2 lovely children who I try my best to cultivate good manners into them. Every morning when I send my daughter to school, we would pass you by and you would be smiling all the time. My daughter is afraid of all lions(even mufasa and samba) but she would not hesitate to tickle your outstretched leg. You are the only lion that is bigger in size than her but also the only one that she can feel comfortable with. Her first good morning greetings are with you.

    You are a beacon of kindness to my daughter. So please remain.

    A fan.

  9. Thank you. Singa. Let get JiaJia and KaiKai. Those 2 animals
    will be fed for next 10 years. Time for them to do some work !

  10. While this could be funny from a certain angle, I’m not sure if this sends the right message out – that quitting before the job gets done is okay.

    Hmm, somemore its a Singapore Mascot.
    What does that says about Singapore society?

  11. I hope you’ll be back by popular demand soon.
    Maybe it would take a fb page for “I want singa back”. In any case, u made ur pt. Just be back soon *tear drop*

  12. Hi Singa,

    Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up. – Gal 6:9

  13. @dianaruth No offense. I don’t think he’ll be back by actual popular demand in my opinion he wasn’t exactly very popular at the end. And the way this letter is phrased isn’t seen as very nice by some people. Additionally, he goes on to ask many rhetorical questions which i personally did not receive in a positive light. It simply affirmed my opinion that the letter was simply trying to send us on a guilt trip.
    When he accuses us through his rhetorical questions about letting kindness and graciousness be placed on the back burner because of our personal unhappiness, my own take is that we expect everyone to constantly display kindness and graciousness and all those characteristics that are deemed as “good” by society, when we ourselves are simply unhappy. They say that unhappiness likes to create its kin. So how could we be expected as a nation to be so nice when we simply are in no mood to do so? Additionally, before anyone starts going on about doing things for the good of society, it doesn’t apply well in the real world. Application is rare, and sometimes, it even causes backlash corporations. As a result, it is strongly discouraged in many businesses when they try to earn money. Our society already being largely meritocratic in nature would naturally filter out such people and attempt to “purify” them. So such people who would act in the interests of society and be graceful etc would be rare. Lastly i just want to point out that well.. kind people still exist, and I myself have seen the occasional person still commit that altruistic act. Maybe the aim of this movement was to create a completely kind and graceful society, but such a goal can’t be fulfilled without going all the way back to our teachings. I would elaborate, but that’s a debate on education that i’m not opening here.

    1. @Sayerinator, wow, you replied to me =)
      thanks! I see where you’re coming from, I really do.

      Unfortunately a “completely kind and graceful society” does not exist- not with education or campaigns, not in SG and not in anywhere else on earth.That however, doesn’t mean that there is no good left in this world.

      Please take heart. Someone wise once said that life is 10% what happened to us and 90% how we choose to react to it. If a “kind and gracious society” is the aim, then let it start with you… and me =)

  14. Hey… What’s happening… That’s not nice.. I like you. I remember drawing you countless times… I still say my please and thank you, give up seats to elderly on the MRT and move to the rear on buses, remove my trays in the fast food restaurant. I like ‘Hao Gong Min’ the least stressful of all the subjects..

    I would like you to stay… Please keep the smile. My little boys would like you too.

  15. Singa thank you for teaching me about kindness and the importance of being polite. I grew up in the early 80s and I will remember with fondness your slogan and your smile. I am sure many people will miss you. I certainly will. Do take care…

  16. Please don’t quit! Till date I still mention about you frequently.
    You are my childhood memory and icon of Singapore, I want my kids to know you too! Please don’t remove all memories that we Singaporans have :__(

    Thank you for your efforts all these years. Please be back and make the society more courteous than before, Singapore can’t do without you..

  17. It truly saddens me to witness such drastic consequences born out of unfortunate social circumstances; circumstances that should form the base of any society. Yes, I agree that Singaporeans today live very hectic lifestyles and face 21st century trails and tribulations, especially students. How do I know? Well, I am one. But I believe that the values of kindness, care, mutual respect, graciousness are sacrosanct values that all of us should live by. It is what makes us human beings that have a mind that enable us to think and feel for others. Our busy schedules and jam-packed weekdays should not be the reason why we lose our sense of humanity. We as a society must never faultier and be rendered slaves to our own narcissism and the S11.

    Yes, previous generations may, unfortunately, display attitudes of “always going for the top and uncaring of the people being stepped on” but that archaic mindset was needed in the time of yesteryear when Singapore was a mere little, red dot in a sea of other, larger and more conspicuous nations, the time when we had to make our presence known in order to survive. But today, we are a 1st tier 1st world nation. Gone are the days when we had to fight to the death to get what we need. We must, as a society, alter and change the mindset. Adapt to the current situation. The current and next generation are on 2 extremes now: we are either too ‘robot’ or too arrogant. For some undisclosed reason people marginalize one another. Is it because we have made it and others haven’t? The epitome of socio-economic excellence? Without these fundamental virtues, I’m afraid to say that we have not reached such a state, yet.

    People have to change. If the common attitude of selfishness and lack of mutual respect persists, we may very well be cause of our downfall. Should any disaster occur, be it man made or natural, we would inevitably falter. This would strike us right in the social fabric of which we are bonded by and may very well sever it. It’s a simple slippery slope concept; one thing leads to another. I was in the train the other day, when suddenly an elderly man entered. Able-bodied people occupied the reserved seats and blatantly acted either unaware of the poor man’s existence or pretended to sleep when just mere seconds ago they were playing “Fruit Up”. As a teenager, it was an incomprehensible and rather grotesque experience. So I did the right thing and gave my seat up.

    I’m not doing this to impress you, but rather to impress upon you that we have to change for the better. If we are unable to exercise care for each other in such mundane circumstances, how can we exercise it when the doodoo really hits the fan? How come the USA, UK and Japan didn’t crumble after the dreadful destructions that befell their nations? These virtues of mutual respect, care, kindness and graciousness should have already been inculcated in our hearts and souls. Though schools are incorporating civics and moral education, it should not just be confined to the classroom and politically right answers. We must live it. walk the talk and talk the walk. I’m a staunch believer that we can change, that society still has the capacity to, its whether we WANT to or not.

    Just to end off, a quote from the 34th President of the United States, Dwight D. Eisenhower, which is more than relevant to our situation: “A people that values its privileges above its principles soon loses both.”

    (P.S. if you managed to read through my entire “aloud opinion” kudos!)

  18. Singa is like a friend who grew up with me when I was attending Kindergarten and Pri School. He seemed to fade into the backgrounds but came back into action a few years ago. Overworked and underpaid, but never left his post. I’ll miss Singa… And yes, Singapore, you’ve managed to once again tangibly remove some of Singaporeans’ favourite childhood memories- like non-plastic and rubber playgrounds…

  19. Dear Singa,

    For many years, since the flood gates of Foreign Talent have been opened, you have been missing in action. You were an abandoned project from our government due to the fact that foreign talent can never be educated on the intrinsic details of kindness.

    Foreign Talents are reckless and we are now being taught to condone the acts of civic unrest and to tolerate being bullied by these Foreign Talents.

    You had a short stint, when Singapore was truely for Singaporeans. You will be sorely missed in a time when we were less crowded and less bullied by Foreign Talent.

    Until we see a change in our governance, you may never return back and become one of Singapore’s proud forgotten history.

    A concerned singaporean

  20. Think you are not the Singa we know. Heros dun give up.
    Btw, who, what you represent when you say you quit. We are trying to unite as one. Please be responsible, we all once believe in u. If you want to show ur unhappiness, step up and promote the smiles to us again.

  21. There never should have been a mascot for graciousness. Only a hopeless country like Singapore requires one to educate its people about it. Lets face it, Singaporeans are hopeless and incorrigible. Thank you Singa, for managing to put up with their shenanigans for so long. Happy retirement!

    PS. You can now watch our society implode from the comfort of your own home. Cheers1

    1. May I know what is your intention of Writing such remarks? To build up or to tear down.. My country is one place I always want to come back to…

  22. time to go has to go, go with a happy smile and leave the good memory only. so put on the smile as per 30 year ago.

  23. Dear Singa: F*** YOU you guilt-tripping passive-aggressive p***y! So you show your real colors at last: there’s actually nothing nice under your well-groomed polity after all. Under your dung-heap coloured fur, you’re snarky, snide, and self-righteous.

    Not that I expected much from a PR lackey who neglected to wear pants for more than half his career: it took you thirty years to get it into your head that you can’t make people kind when their hearts are empty.

    We now work 15 years to secure public housing that was supposed to be affordable. We are constantly looking out for special offers because most of us can’t afford to go on without them. We are told to be a meritocratic society, by which the State means it won’t look after us, and at the same time we are urged to give to charity – by definition unmeritocratic. Courtesy is also unmeritocratic: it means giving a damn about other people. So you can either convince your superiors to remove “meritocratic” from the State pledge for being a gross lie, or you can consider yourself a traitor to the State.

    It doesn’t much matter to me which you do, though: if I see you in the streets I will beat you to death with a rock in a sock.


  24. Any countries that need any types of ‘positivity’ campaign are just showing insecurities. (Just think about it.. why would one country needs kindness, happiness, all that kind of basic human behavior campaign)

  25. I am sad to hear you resign. Do not give up hope, we have a good chance. Please bring Japan education in. They have taught their children to be so courteous even the cashiers in supermarkets are smiling all the way to everybody. Impress on their service sector. The Poly, University, MOE and ICA has to improve on better ‘Moral (more courteous, everybody is kind)’ education improvement scoresheet and ‘Moral’ overseas talents selection than only building on knowledge, economy which learn and forgo to working life or not courteous people into and break the harmony. I am just afraid.

  26. I feel sad it has come to this. I makes me wonder … “Is this a campaign stunt?” Did some “creative agency” recommend you do this? The signal you are sending out is QUIT. if you can’t solve it, QUIT. If you can’t make a difference QUIT.

    Paramedics. Even if they know if someone has 3rd degree burns, they continue to try and save that life. It ain’t over till the person is dead or the paramedic gives up.

    As a Singaporean, I continue to believe in us. Who we are. Our pioneering spirit that brought us here in the first place. And I am staying. I have no idea how you think you can just quit when you aren’t even REAL! And have to face the day-to-day struggles (crowded roads/MRT/rising cost of living/feeling dispensed with).

    Is this campaign drama socially responsible? Kids have grown to love you. You are part of who we are.

  27. I like the lion paw stamp. Can I have one too?? Maybe Singa felt threaten by the 2 new Panda at River Safari? ;p

  28. Blame the government for bringing in so many foreigners. I bet you all those instant citizens and recent citizens do not know who you are and have never heard of you.

    How can one be kind and gracious when the when everyone is cooped up in pigeon holes and packed like sardine on trains and buses?

    Yes, I can understand why you are quitting. If I were you, I would have quit long ago, when they increased the population from 3 million in 1990, to 4 million in 2000 and 5 million in 2010. Those 2 million new comers never heard your message.

    You may feel that you are nagging, but to these 2 million, they have never seen or heard you even once. You may think it is an on-going campaign, but to these new-comers, you are a new comer.

    Now, we are gunning for 6.9 million, and even 10 million.

  29. Hm… time to retire this website too. Kindness is in everyone, therefore there is no need to have any of this campaign. We’ll need to prudently make use of public funds.

  30. Dear Singa, you are my biggest idol since young! You guided me and taught me manners when I was a kid. I really love you! How can you quit just for a minority of pessimistic people? You still have me, my friends, and many many nice friends with you! Please don’t forget us! We’re working hard together with you and we need you to lead us! Please continue to be our leader! Let’s don’t fall into the “complaining” culture too. How can we just give in simply like that? We must work even harder with our “never say die” spirit! Once again, please stay. Yours sincerely, Zean

  31. Just go. Your departure don’t make any difference. If people wants to be kind, they can do it without you.

  32. From the shores of Australia, even the news of this lion mascot quitting has made quite an impact. Singa, you need to know, I experience the results of your teaching everyday. My flatmate is Singaporean and grew up with your courtesy campaign, and I am proud to say this you: your teachings have not been lost. I experience the courtesy campaign DAILY. She is kind and generous and courteous. Your resignation has left her feeling empty and at a loss of what to do.
    While you may not see it, your lessons of kindness has clearly reached far and wide. The metaphor of your departure and what you stand for will only fail to educate the future generations on these values and beliefs. As it is now, our society most crucially needs your presence.

  33. I was very shocked about the resignation of Singa a week ago. I’m so sad he is going to leave for some reasons. Until today, I don’t know what is happening to new generations of Singaporeans. Have they forgotten about Singa the courtesy lion as an icon? The only problem is that most Singaporeans are very difficult to do a small part of courtesy. They are rude to each other. They don’t give seats to those who are in need. They don’t have time to learn it through moral education in school because of important exams to prepare. Most children never have time to practise courtesy, such as how to greet, practise manner, say thank you and please, at home with parents. Another reason is that children are told not to talk to strangers in public, or are too afraid to greet to the visitors. They maybe too shy to say ‘hello’.

    I remember I was born in the late 1980s. Singa is part of my memory that I should remember since my childhood. I mustn’t forget that Singa is always there to promote courtesy. I saw him, as a mascot, all over Singapore to educate not only me, but also all of us to be kind to each other regardless of when and where we are. I watched him on TV.

    I did a short research on both culture and courtesy for my assignment a few months ago. The real fact is that in England, most British people have learnt how to be courteous and polite because they usually practise in school and at home daily. They also learn some manners, for example, saying ‘sorry’ when they bump into each other, smiling at people means they are happy and welcome, and saying ‘thank you’ and ‘please ‘. Most of the time they say “thank you” a lot. If they don’t, they will be considered rude.

    I would like to urge the government to firstly, look at what the problems are till today, secondly have debates among the members of the public on Singapore courtesy, and thirdly ask and find solutions through studies on how people in other countries practise good courtesy. It is very challenging. The only solution for government is to launch better initiatives to promote much on courtesy through schools, workplaces, advertisements, social media, societies and communities.

    Please be urged to show courtesy and politeness to everyone with manner, regardless of race, language, nationality, gender, age or religion, especially young adult, students, these parents with young children. Try not to make yourself difficult to others. If you still can’t do it, then it affects your daily life. Please pass down to the younger generation of Singaporeans about who Singa is, what the purpose is for Singa to have in our daily lives, how he can educate us through courtesy campaign and the reasons why Singa is there to encourage us to be courteous.

    Singa, please don’t go! Come back and search for solutions to come out with. If you don’t return to help, then who else will?

  34. I feel your hurt and annoyance, Singa. There was one time where I politely told two children not to eat on the bus, However, Not only did they not put away their food, one of them, a boy, exclaimed loudly: ‘So? I don’t care!’ It is this kind of ‘I don’t care’ attitude that is hurting our society today. It is, sadly, growing more and more contagious. Even the elderly and the adults also sometimes show this kind of attitude today.
    However, Singa, as hard as it is, I and many other Singaporeans who have grown up with you still love you very much, and will be very sad to see you go. To us, you are not just a kindness mascot-you are a part of our society and a national icon like the merlion and the Singapore girl. It will be heartbreaking to see such a famous symbol of Singapore and a part of our childhood disappear just like that. I do hope you’ll decide to come back from retirement soon.
    Please have faith in us again, Singa. Not all of us are as bitter and angry as you may think. There are sill some of us in our society who have taken heed of your ‘nagging’ and do their best to look out for one another-and we need your help to continue cultivating our children into these kind of gracious people that Singapore so desperately needs. What’s the point of being one of the most developed countries when graciousness and kindness is non-existent?
    You are one of our last hopes left to eradicate the ‘I don’t care’ attitude in us. For the sake of our future generation, please return. Whatever happens, you can rest assured that we will still be by your side every step of the way and that somewhere, someone will still continue to be gracious.
    Yours truly,
    Someone that still cares

  35. Dear Singa,
    Your resignation is an arrow through my heart. On an island where the only constant is change, the last thing we need is for you to throw in your towel. So many things from my childhood has been lost and revamped and “upgraded” that I hardly feel any connection with Singapore when I go home. Please don’t go. You are one of the last tethers I have to home. A T-shirt of you is still hanging in my closet. Will its meaning be lost forever?

    1. Hello! Here at SKM, we agree with you that Singapore is an island of change. However, these changes over the years haven’t all been for the better, and Singa’s cause for kindness is one such example. Using our demanding lifestyles as an excuse, some of us have become indifferent towards those around us, acted out ungraciously and left the responsibility solely on Singa’s shoulders. We need to change such attitudes and help more Singaporeans see that they are part of the solution. Hence, on 15 May 2013, Singa resigned as Singapore’s mascot for kindness.

      Nonetheless, we’re very happy to hear that you still think of him fondly. Singa is a part of SKM’s heritage, and remains an icon of Singapore. We hope his message was brought across loud and clear, and we hope you’ll join us in helping to make Singapore a kinder society to live in. While resigned, Singa is not exactly gone. A lot of his history and work has also been carefully curated at SKM’s Kindness Gallery located at 140 Hill Street. If you ever miss him or would like to learn more, do drop by!

  36. Dear Singa:

    FUCK YOU you guilt-tripping passive-aggressive pussy! So you show your real colors at last: there’s actually nothing nice under your well-groomed polity. Cyka.

  37. Dear Singa,
    Please don’t quit.All the people in the whole world loves you alot.Even i am from India,i studied in Singapore.But still i learnt a lot from you.Even in Singapore,many people did not give up to help. Because do you know why?They keep on thinking about you.if you quit,everyone will be sad.See i have done a good deed because of you.Please don’t quit Singa.

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