There has always been this phrase, to make an example of someone. It basically means to punish someone to warn the rest that this is what would happen to you if you make the same mistake.
Yesterday, my superior did that with me. We had a route march and he wanted everyone to hold their rifles properly. As a result of not doing it, he made me carry my riffle over my head while marching. My mood was obviously rattled. It was really frustrating and shameful. The thing is that I was not the only one to not hold the riffle properly and there was no clear instruction on what is holding the riffle properly. So I felt really annoyed when I was the only one to do so.
Nevertheless I understand why he did it, when he did what he did the rest would see and be afraid to get that punishment and hence would hold their riffle properly. I guess if it were up to me, I wouldn’t just call one person to do it, I would call out a few. At least it wouldn’t be a shaming session.
Recently, several things has been making me really irritated. I have always been someone that works hard to keep the bunk area clean. I have, on occasion, tidied all 3 bunks on my own. I take it upon myself to sweep the staircase whenever I am in camp. I put a bin in the toilet and office and clear it regularly. I scrub the toilet when no one else did. I single handedly made the laundrette clean. I single handedly cleaned the spec bunk when no one else did. I fixed the lock that was spoiled for months. I cleared the lockers of the seniors which was filthy. I clear trash in my bunk regularly. I simply made the place liveable and we still got complains that our place is dirty? Are you serious? Have you seen the other platoons?
To be frank, my resume above is not something to brag about. It just feels horrible to put in so much effort and still not be appreciated. Of all the people you could have chosen to punish you chose me. Why? What for? To discourage me to stop working hard? To punish me for the things I have done?
If you want to talk about fair, the amount of work I have done is enough to make trainees’ cleaning seem minor.
There is a huge difference between demanding discipline and nitpicking. The thing about Tekong, people can always nitpick over the most little thing. You can always find a dirty spot somewhere. However, punishing people when you were not clear is just plain unprofessional. I get that we are in the army, but I still think that you can be humane and not just scold for the sake of scolding.
God, give me patience to go through this. God, help me be understanding. Father, please help me to submit to the authority placed above me. Lord, be my motivation to go through this time.
I am brought back to the time in retreat when the speaker gave an altar call for being faithful where you are now and not be distracted by the future. If you are a car mechanic, you be the best car mechanic you can be where you are.
Though I responded because of something totally different, it is very applicable to me today. Lord, be my fuel to go through this time. Even when all our superiors comes against us, may we not lose morale and continue to do our best. Help me Lord.