Recently, there’s been debates about whether females should be serving National Service, at the very least in non-combat roles. That means as firefighters, paramedics and even in the police, wherever that there’s a need for more manpower (or womanpower in this case).
Much has been talked about the social aspects but I’ve never seen an arguement that presents a rarely acknowledged fact males have to endure during National Service; injuries.
Whether it’s service in the Singapore Police Force, SAF or the SCDF (or any other NS service branch), one thing they all have in common is that people get injured during training and in the line of duty.
It’s an unavoidable fact. Training is hard, it is tough and relentless and there’s bound to be those who get hurt.
On Reddit alone there are a ton of horror stories about the injuries Singapore’s males have suffered.
Personally, I injured one of knees during training too. I enlisted in 2003, when the IPPT still had the Shuttle Run in it. During the turn (after picking the block), I lost traction on the asphalt and twisted both my knee and ankle.
Had a couple of days of MC and light duty for weeks.
The problem with injuries is that non-visible ones can be seen as keng (faking it) by jaded medical officers. While I was lucky (or rather unlucky) enough that my injuries were visible (the area around my knee swelled up), there are others who’ve gotten much more injured than me and still written off as malingering.
So perhaps the discuss about whether women should be doing NS shouldn’t just be centered on social impacts and other intangible subjects. We should also be looking at whether they’ll be injured more, considering that male bodies are the stronger and hardier ones of the species.