On the same night after collapsing during Singapore’s National Day Rally speech due to overwork and heat exhaustion, my country’s Prime Minister crafted a reflective Facebook post about what would happen if God gave him three wishes. The first two are detailed below. Some speculate the third is held in reserve at a top-secret underground facility.

Singapore is the only place on Earth where Buddhists, Freethinkers, Hindus, Muslims, and Christians can live in harmony and friendship and strive towards, as PM Lee wrote, not ‘material prosperity’ but ‘divine discontent(ment)’ and ‘the wisdom to count our blessings’. I am really blessed to be led by a national leader that does not ridicule or attack any religious, ethnic, or cultural groups but handles controversial issues sensitively with regards to all sides.

Just had a conversation with a friend working 54 hours a week with little breaks and earning under USD 1.5k as a chef at one of Singapore’s most popular restaurants. It always amazes me how hard people in the majority world work for low pay. Few complain in comparison to ‘developed’ countries where there are pensions, basic income, subsidized gas, or minimum wage but people riot in the streets or blame legal migrants or fellow citizens of different races.

Today marks my first year as a student at an American university. I cannot solve all the problems of the world but I will do my best to work hard here. America’s success, Singapore’s success, and the world’s success need not always be contradicting goals. In fact, I believe this world we live in today is made more dangerous and bloody as a result of powerful people and nations adopting a ‘me first’ mentality of self-gain by selfishly creating long-term problems for everyone to temporarily solve problems for themselves. I think the problems are complex enough. But if we choose not be part of the problem, who else will?