Monday, 28 May 2012

The 7% of Separation

Our tourism ministry loves us. By 'us,' I mean Malaysians. Peaceful, friendly, multi-racial and multi-cultural. As a large number of us are busy cleaning tear gas out of our eyes, they spend millions telling the world that there's nothing wrong in KL.

So you can imagine the degree of mind-warping that tourists experience when they arrive in KLIA. All they know of Malaysia is what they see in promotional videos and circulars. They are then confused further when they learn of our racially-based component parties, and something called a "Bumiputra discount."

I recently encountered this with a friend, fresh off the plane from the UK, who initially asked why we haven't done anything about PERKASA, which he described as "the beginnings of an extremist-terrorist cell." He went on to say he understood that "Malaysians don't live on trees and drive old Land Rovers," (which is a common thing), but thought "you guys had the multi-racial concept down pat."

"With the way things are now," he said, "it seems like KL's setting the stage to outdo the Rwandan genocide."

I laughed at the notion, despite knowing full-well that it was true.

For as long as we can collectively remember, we have been trying to drive a wedge between the races. Rwanda had the Hutus and Tutsis. Here, we have Bumis and non-Bumis. I have spent my entire life trying to find a difference between a Bumi and a non-Bumi. I haven't yet found an answer.

Let's sit back and think about this. When religion is removed from the equation, with all of its rules and regulations as well, you're left with Bumi-Malays and non-Bumi-everyone-elses. Define ONE difference.

Now let's see what's attached to 'Bumiputra' status. Bumi's get UiTM, MARA, housing and job quotas, ease of acceptance into tertiary-educational institutions, and the 7% discount, to name a few.

Even when religion is added to the fray, a difference is still not found. What makes a Malay-Muslim better than a Christian-Chinese, or a Sikh-Punjab, or even an Indian-Muslim? What is so special about Protos-Malay that the federal government has to design the country to fit Bumiputras? If anything, it shows that the field must first be slanted in our (Bumi) favour before we even consider crawling (and groaning) into action.

The Rwandans had their genocide. We had our May 13th. They've written texts, produced movies, built monuments, and created a museum. We have swept all evidence and documentation of the horror under the rug, and make as if it never happened.

When a mistake is made, its acknowledgement is the signal of progress. When the mistake is ignored, denied even, it is the signal of regress.

We're just asking for it, really.

via BlackBerry®

Wednesday, 28 March 2012

the Christian Threat.

(You can read the Malaysian Insider article here.)

The "Threat of Christianisation," a topic that is set to be lectured on at a teachers' conference in Johor next month. This lecture is not only supported by the state education board, but also by the Johor state government. This has sparked tension within the Christian community, who I'm sure is asking, "What on earth have we done wrong?"

I'd like to outline how the Muslim community is at fault here.

A common thought in the world of psychology is that the mind will see what it chooses to see, and is not foreign to fabricating the truth to fit its delusions (sounds a bit like Ibrahim Ali, doesn't it? That's a scary thought). The mind is also a sneaky bugger, because it'll find scapegoats to absolve it from blame. This is why the "Threat of Christianisation" exists; It's a scapegoat to hide the insecurities of the Malaysian-Muslim (or should I say, the Malay-Muslim) community about their faith.

I'm not saying that the Malays are questioning their faith. However, their hold of the faith is questionable. These are people who would, if asked to declare themselves non-Muslims under duress, call themselves Christians. Hindus. Buddhists. Even Jews, if you're pointing a ridiculously large gun at them. These are people who would, without a shadow of a doubt, consume alcohol and pork if it meant getting into a crowd that can fast-track them to riches and prominence.

The only threat, really, is the threat of Malay-brainwashing, nothing else. This is an issue brought upon themselves.

Here's another angle. Anyone notice how an imam, or bilal will very quickly chase out a vagrant that wanders into a mosque, seeking shelter? I've been in this situation once before, after a night out I'd rather not recount. I had sat myself on the steps leading up to the prayer hall, not even in the mosque itself, after having a car drive through a puddle and splash me as I walked along the pavement. The mosque in question had a security guard, who very promptly told me to leave.

No one loves exclusivity more than a Malay. No really, take it from a fellow Bumiputera (who spends his days convincing people - and himself - that he's Indian). And this is why I believe the "Christian threat" was brought upon ourselves; how many times have we heard stories of non-Muslims being excluded from events? So what if they're religious events; I've sat in during Sunday mass (and I don't have urges to convert, either).

It's very simple. The Islam taught by the Prophet Muhammad PBUH was one of love, and inclusivity. If you're familiar with the story of the Prophet and his Jewish neighbour, you'll understand what I mean. Yes, the Prophet was a man of war; He waged many an epic battle in the name of Islam. But to those who did not raise a sword toward him, he embraced with kindness and love. And that is why Islam grew to be the colossal empire that it is today, the empire that continues to grow at the fastest recorded rate in relation to other faiths. The Islam taught today in Malaysia bares little to no relation to the Islam taught by the Prophet. Instead of including, and teaching within the bounds of kindness, we seek to exclude, alienate, and ostracise those who do not conform to the very rigid stereotype of 'a good Muslim.'

The "threat of Christianisation" is an issue created by Muslims, to incite fear within Muslims. Now where's the productivity (or the 1Malaysia) in that?

We need to stop propagating, and start educating. I believe that the Malaysian public, given the right tools, can make an informed decision about themselves, and their choices in life. These tools are exactly what the Government does not provide in the federal education syllabus, but that's a story for another day. The fact of the matter is, we should be looking at ourselves, noting our flaws, our mistakes, and working on them, rather than blaming innocent bystanders for our shortcomings.

The only threat here is the threat of the Bumiputera, nothing else.

Monday, 12 March 2012

How long?

All it took was eggs and instant noodles.

The burnt remains of Nurul Nadirah, age 5, was found in a plantation somewhere in Johor. She was reported missing by her 25yr-old mother after she failed to return from a store on the ground floor of the adjacent block of flats, where she was sent (by her aforementioned mother) to buy eggs, and instant noodles.

It's astounding what people are capable of these days. And it's terrifying what you can no longer do in this day and age due to lack of security.

We very recently began complaining of income taxes as Malaysia began to weather one of the most inflated economies in SEA. Our tax money, the sum we so desperately wish we didn't have to pay, goes to fund our first line of defence when it comes to tackling crime: Polis DiRaja Malaysia.

Why can I not see my money at work?

The case of Nurin Jazlin Jazimin is still unsolved as yet, with her rapist-cum-killer still on the prowl. What have we done as a people, as a nation, to curb such heinous crimes from being committed?

TELL Magazine, then under the helm of editor Nuraina A. Samad and publisher Wahti Mahidin, released an issue detailing a proposed NURIN Alert; A sprint-warning system based upon the States' AMBER Alert. This proposal was dismissed by the Ministry for Women & Family Affairs. If implemented, the NURIN system would allow details of missing and abducted children to be spread nationwide within minutes of their disappearance. Such a system would, in theory, dramatically reduce the number of abductions, as well as halve the time required to alert the public and the media in such an event.

If the NURIN system had been implemented, I'm certain that it would have been much easier to track the movements of Nurul Nadirah's abductor, and primarily, her.

Post-Canny Ong, parking lots got brighter. How much longer before we see our streets get safer?

via BlackBerry®

Wednesday, 29 February 2012

Where's your vote going?

I had a very interesting conversation this evening with a dear friend of mine. What started off as a ranting regarding the recent banning of the Erykah Badu concert scheduled for tonight, ended up concluding in something rather enlightening.

The GE is coming up. Yes, we're braced for it. But are we ready? Er... not really, no.

Here's the reality of it.

The next GE seems slanted toward the Coalition. And that's due to years, and years, and years of Barisan screw-ups. They've made many, as expected of any government anywhere. As I spoke of my grievances toward the federal government, my buddy (a hardcore BN-UMNO) supported, began to argue both sides of the coin (which I most definitely was not expecting).

DISCLAIMER: I speak of politics. Mostly politics, actually. But I admit that I don't really know everything. I do this because I respect my hardline so-po bloggers (like Rocky) and so on. As it would be said in Bahasa, nak bagi jalan lah kan. Because I can conquer everything, if I put my mind to it. Heh. Nanti mampus duit Nuffnang tak cukup nak masuk minyak BMW dia, kan?

Anywho. With the next GE coming round, I'm sure most of you eligible voters are writing things down. Who's done what, who's planning to do what, and who hasn't delivered on promises. And it was these three things that were discussed tonight over teh o' limau panas.

I stand by my belief that there is no one political party that can address the needs of Rakyat at this point in time. Each has its drawbacks, while none seem to have any plus points. It really is a matter of the lesser evils. Personally? I'm still lobbying for an extra ballot box that says 'None Of The Above,' or in its fully-expanded form, 'None of the aforementioned parties accurately represent my stand in society. Therefore, my vote is cast toward a grey-area that exists somewhere between the two.'

Think about it. You take Anwar, you get rear-ended (pun intended!) by the United States. You go for Barisan, you get Rosmah (there goes any notion of sleeping. Nightmares abound). And so my statement remains: My vote belongs to the grey-area that exists between the two mainstream political parties.

Just out of curiousity, I wonder how many of you, my dear (and few) readers, would vote for that grey area? Do let me know in the comments.

Forever fighting for a just Malaysia.