SINGAPORE: A parent’s social media post sparked a debate online after he asked whether or not he should lodge a complaint regarding what their son’s platoon was made to do during national service training.

“My son’s platoon was made to leopard crawl with fieldpack all the way to the main gate of the camp. Complain or not?” asked Iman Treyor on the Complaint Singapore Facebook account on May 30.

The post has since received over 200 comments with some netizens urging the parent to complain and others explaining that this is part and parcel of the son’s training.

NS is a requirement for all qualified male Singaporean citizens and second-generation permanent residents. It entails active service as a full-time National Serviceman (NSF) for two years.

Needless to say, the military training each one undergoes involves strenuous physical activities, which some commenters endeavored to help the post author understand.

“The army is meant to make boys turn into men,” wrote one netizen who urged the parent to not complain.

See also  Biting back at Mindef

Others, however, understood that the parent was concerned the activity carried the risk of spinal damage to their son.

One commenter wrote that the trainees may have been made to do an activity that was unsafe as it subjected the spine to a “lot of compression,” which could cause damage to the discs and vertebrae, leading to permanent injury at worst. He urged that the feedback on the “horrendous method” of training should be given to the Ministry of Defense (MINDEF).

Others urged the parent to trust the boy’s superiors, who are acting as his “fathers and mothers” during this time. Another agreed, writing, “If they don’t train hard they will die hard. Training is very important.”

One even said that the parent should be proud of what their son is accomplishing and becoming, as many of the commenters appear to perceive NS to be a rite of passage to adulthood for males.

See also  MINDEF refutes TikToker's claim that he hacked into its system

Others told their own stories of the hardships they went through during their training.

“Once my whole platoon was made to carry our cabinet to the parade square and back because we forgot to lock the gate. Memorable,” wrote one, adding the cry-laugh emoji.

Another commenter chimed in that he had been made to carry his bed from the fourth floor to the ground floor and back.

The Independent Singapore has reached out to MINDEF for further comment. /TISG

Read also: Lawrence Wong: The world is more dangerous now; Singapore must sustain commitment to national service