Japanese behaved with dignity

PUBLISHED : Thursday, 17 March, 2011, 12:00am
UPDATED : Thursday, 17 March, 2011, 12:00am

The earthquake in Sendai was the biggest in Japan's history. But in the face of this crisis, people did not panic.

The Japanese remained unbelievably calm and controlled. They lived up to their reputation of being civic-minded and polite. It was impressive to see how patiently they lined up for food. There was no pushing or fighting for it. The Japanese showed the depth of their humanity by helping and caring for others.

Last December, some Hong Kong students were stuck at London's Heathrow Airport, which was closed because of heavy snow. Those interviewed on television had lots of complaints. I wonder how they would have behaved if they had been caught up in the disaster in Japan.

It is inevitable that we will face problems large and small in our daily lives. But we should not let everything that goes wrong be blown out of proportion and make us frustrated or angry. I feel very sorry for the Japanese, but I salute their calmness and dignity.

Herman Lam, Wah Yan College, Kowloon

From the Editor

Thank you for your letter, Herman. The disaster in Japan has certainly shown the world what that country is capable of. Not only have people been exceptionally well behaved, but the government has reacted swiftly, openly and honestly regarding the dangers they faced.

People who do not face dangers often have difficulty dealing with any sort of disruption or discomfort. This makes them very vulnerable, especially when things go wrong. The more we expose ourselves to hardship, the stronger we become.

The people in Japan obviously have a lot of faith in their government and have lessons in fortitude to share with the rest of the world.

Susan, Editor