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Man scolds woman for insulting driver

TIRADE: A screengrab from the video showing the man confronting the woman. The man in the middle is another passenger. PHOTO: STOMP

PEACEKEEPER: The bus driver (right) separating the man from the woman. PHOTO: STOMP

When he heard a woman allegedly insulting a driver in a public bus on Sunday evening, a passenger sprang to the driver's defence.

It sparked an ugly scene that lasted several minutes as the two passengers hurled insults at each other, to the shock of others on the bus.

One of them filmed a six-minute video of the exchange and his friend, who wanted to be known only as R2, sent it to citizen journalism website Stomp with this description: "Outraged after allegedly hearing a female commuter call the bus driver stupid, a man went on a vulgar tirade and called her various names...

"He refused to stop his furious rant even when another male commuter intervened and when the driver tried to separate the quarrelling duo."

In the video, the man can be heard shouting repeatedly, "He's not stupid, you're stupid!", interspersed with expletives.

Other commuters could be seen leaving the bus as the antagonists stood facing each other and trading insults.

When contacted, R2, 25, said his friend had told him that the man appeared to be drunk.

At one point, the woman laughed and said sarcastically that the man was very funny.

Even as she was alighting at Suntec City, the man continued his tirade.

Shop assistant X.M. Teo, 20, who saw the video, said: "Justified or not, the woman making such offensive remarks is asking for trouble."

HARSH

Mr Jack Tang, a 19-year-old who is waiting to enter university, disagreed: "I thought the man's comments were unnecessarily harsh towards the woman."

The Singapore Kindness Movement general secretary, Dr William Wan, said that while it is right to stand up against bad behaviour, people must not behave badly themselves.

Dr Carol Balhetchet of the Singapore Children's Society said: "As adults, we tend to control our emotions better.

"But sometimes, when we engage in reactive behaviour, there is an increased sense of urgency and we may tend to respond without thinking as a result."