One Sticky Point: Singapore Maintains Ban on Gum

Posted on March 13, 2010

In an effort to sustain the image of an island that is squeaky clean, Singapore has maintained its ban on chewing gum sales, which was first imposed in 1992. Known for its Esplanade and beautiful skyline, Singapore is a city in transition.

 One Sticky Point: Singapore Maintains Ban on Gum  picture

The question is: Does this work against the city’s desire to cultivate a more cosmopolitan image in the hopes of attracting more tourists and foreign investment? Singapore opened its first casino last month and began hosting Formula One races in 2008.

There is a method to the seeming madness of the gum ban. It is all meant to provide a means to reduce gum-related litter and vandalism. Punishment for these minor crimes can include canings.

Singapore maintains very strict laws against public demonstrations concerning religion and race, and for major infractions like drug smuggling, hangings are often in order.

“We remain concerned that lifting the ban could result in chewing gum litter resurfacing as a problem. The government stands by its decision to ban chewing gum as the rationale is based on maintaining a clean and comfortable living environment,” says Mohamad Maliki Bin Osman, parliamentary secretary of the national development ministry.

For some, the fact that Singapore is internationally known for its ban on gum sales is rather annoying.

“Let Singaporeans be accountable for the consequences…If Singaporeans were seeking liberty in so many areas and the government does concede in some of these areas, why not liberalize the chewing gum ban,” asks Denise Phua Lay Peng, a member of parliament from the ruling People’s Action Party.

“A clean city is more important than the freedom to chew gum,” argues Mohamad. “Before the ban, gobs of gum had stopped subway doors from closing, creating delays… Our efforts at creating a clean, green and safe living environment have garnered much more international acclaim than criticisms of the ban of chewing gum.”

The ban was modified in 2004 to allow sales of gum that have medicinal value.

Still a very sticky issue.

What do YOU think about this?

(Link)

 One Sticky Point: Singapore Maintains Ban on Gum  picture

MDeeDubroff

M Dee Dubroff is the penname of this freelance writer and former teacher originally from Brooklyn, New York. A writer of ghostly and horror fiction, she has branched out into the world of humorous non fiction writing and maintains eight web sites covering a wide variety of topics. She also writes feature articles for several local newspapers. Her book entitled: A Taste of Funny, and her website, Eat, Drink And Really Be Merry (http://www.ingestandimbibe.com) feature many well researched and humorous articles on the subject of food and drink.
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17 comments
sky
sky

I think the law should be like this: “A person can chew whatever he wants but in the right place” it should be banned in the public place just like http://www.thechanelonline.com/index.php?main_pag... cigarettes are banned in the public place. Creating some areas where people can chew or smoke every street would also solve the problem for those who are finding it hard without chewing gums.

Peter
Peter

Every sidewalk in Sydney City Australia has a smooth black blob from gum every 20cm, it disgusts me, i wish Australia would man up like Singapore and bring back the CANE!!!!! Youth in all western countries has no respect for the law or other people.

zara
zara

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filtrete
filtrete

Well, I think the law should be like this: “A person can chew whatever he wants but in the right place” it should be banned in the public place just like cigarettes are banned in the public place. Creating some areas where people can chew or smoke every street would also solve the problem for those who are finding it hard without chewing gums. I think the reason why tourists prefer Singapore is because of its cleanliness and that should be the case, no matter what!

MR GUM LOVER
MR GUM LOVER

allow gum please... i promise I won't litter i swear please allow it I am an avid gum enthusiast and I frequently have to go to malaysia just to chew gum :(

Jan
Jan

This is an awesome rule. I wish we had it in Canada.

kitty
kitty

"Punishment for these minor crimes can include canings." BULLSHIT. obviously this writer doesn't do his research, we're famous for FINES. not canings =.=

shawn
shawn

ya,its a 'fine' country ,since you and i are singaporeans we know

Thomas
Thomas

brainwashed, all of u, into thinking that a night out on the town will result in barely making it back home due to all the gum stuck under your shoes...nothing short of ridiculous...

Anon
Anon

I'm sick of gum, it gets on your shoes, turns into filthy black stains on the ground, get shoved under tables, it disgusts me. I say spread the ban!

Jason
Jason

I think banning gum is not such a bad idea...