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23 Sep
2012

Reflection (part 2)

First of all this week, I would like to offer each of you the opportunity to share with me if you want me to continue to send discussion topics. He response rate has been low, as observed by those who have participated.

How to Get Your Voice Heard

The desire to gain or improve status can also be recognized in actions by people who want a greater voice in the activities of social, political, or other regulating organizations.

But recently, simple protest or marches don't seem to be enough for activists. We've seen the violent confrontations in China over the disputed Diaoyus territories with Japan, and here in Hong Kong, mass rallies and hunger strikes contributed to winning the day over the government's plans to National Education. This is of course a global trend as we witness the current deadly protests of the United States and France.

But is it going too far and over incidences too trivial? In Madrid, 60 people were hurt as music fans rioted when a filled-to-capacity venue hosting an MTV concert was closed to further entry. And in Amsterdam, youths vandalized shops set a car on fire, damaged lamp posts, and scores of injuries were reported, after they were denied admission to a private birthday party. The cause: about 30,000 people received an invitation to a girl's 16th birthday party after she announced the fete on Facebook and it went viral. She forgot to set her Facebook settings to private.

My inquiry to you, from an Asian perspective, is violent protest and rioting becoming the norm to making one's point of view heard? Have we lost the value of dialogue and compromise?

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19 Aug
2012

"Teach your children well, Their father's hell did slowly go by, And feed them on your dreams The one they picked, the one you'll know by." Lyrics by Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young, 1970

In last week's Shanghai Daily.com, writers delved into the topic of China's pampered children; the little emperors and empresses, and the current trends in nurturing methods used by parents.

"Raise a daughter in an easy, comfortable environment, but raise a boy in a rigorous way" (fu yang nu, qiong yang nan), the saying goes, passed down over thousands of years.

But with China's quantum leap into modernization and urban prosperity for many, the old wisdom has been drowned out by the sound of a middle class getting rich and wanting to pass on to the children the ease and advantages they never had.

Both urban boys and girls have been pampered, many to excess, and as a result, there's much hand-wringing about 'materialistic girls' and especially boys who are weak and unmanly ��" parents have gone too far, some say, in giving them everything they want."

A whole 'boys' movement' has arisen to help boys get back in touch with their tougher, masculine side. As for girls, the old adage about a protected and comfortable environment appears to hold true and some parents even go overboard, introducing their girls to the better things in life in hopes that they won't settle for less when they marry."

What do you think about how parents guide and prepare their children for their future status in society? How were you driven by your family and what qualities were you encouraged to develop for success in life?

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