Would S'poreans queue orderly if daily necessities are in short supply?


SINGAPORE - Last Saturday's article ("Seeing red over a black Hello Kitty") compared the scramble for N95 face masks to that for the Singing Bone Hello Kitty soft toy, and asked if Singapore society had the resilience to see itself through a true national crisis.

The Hello Kitty toy caused a commotion simply because there was limited stock.

In the case of the N95 mask, there was some chaos initially. The panic eased only after the Government announced it had a stockpile of nine million masks.

However, if the hazardous haze conditions had lasted longer, I doubt the people would stay calm for long. After all, nine million masks would mean each person here would get, at the most, only two.

If the item in short supply was not masks or Hello Kitty toys, but daily necessities like food and water, would most of us still queue in an orderly manner for them?

- Tan Ping Hau