An archbishop in southern Vietnam has condemned negative behavior and has called on students to foster human values in the coming school year. "Some youth have tainted their own image with outrageous and wacky clothes or shirts with horrible slogans and violent pictures," Archbishop Paul Bui Van Doc of Ho Chi Minh City said in his letter to Catholic students in the country's largest city by population. Archbishop Doc complained that many people "never consciously obey traffic regulations" and their irresponsible thoughts and actions cause dangers to others. Local media report that motorbike drivers cross the streets when traffic lights are red, ride carelessly and on pavements, and even fight with one another when they collide. The archbishop said in his letter issued Aug. 18 that many youth want to show off by swearing and treating others without respect. "Violence in schools is more and more prevalent," said Archbishop Doc. "In the context of such a society, I would like to call on you to maintain and foster the good values of our national tradition," he said. The archbishop told students to work hard so they will gain both knowledge and human values which will bring real happiness to themselves, their families and society. The prelate asked them to try to perform well at school, be grateful to their parents who support them to study and share what they have with their peers. Archbishop Doc also urged students to witness to honesty, love and the common good through their daily life and work. The new academic year for Vietnam's students starts Sept. 5.
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