Friday, April 09, 2010

Random Thoughts

I have been itching to write for weeks now but I only decided to do it this morning. It was kind of weird to wake up and suddenly had some ideas popping up like the malware XP Security 2010 that infected the company's laptop couple of weeks ago. I still cannot believe I fell victim to a spyware/phishing scam. I know High Speed Broadband (HSBB) is in Malaysia now but please, 'surf the channel' with care. Fast internet? Now I have another excuse to go back for good!

Speaking of going back, a friend who is an ADUN wrote about why Malays work overseas. Although indirectly, in that article, maybe he was trying to shift the blame to the 'old' New Economic Policy (NEP) founded by Malaysia's Prime Minister's father who himself has now replaced it with New Economic Model (NEM). My logical thought would be the reason why these Malays are here at the first place is because of NEP, if you define NEP as the government giving scholarships to these Malays (including me) through MARA convertible loans, Public Service Department scholarships and other Government-linked companies like PNB, Petronas, Telekom and TNB. I did point out to the ADUN friend that most of us here are for the money and that is the obvious reason people are in denial about. You cannot blame us for being a bit ambitious and greedy when the exchange rate permits us to earn a lot more. Sadly, this main reason was not included in his article and that is simply... the truth.

Of course there are other reasons for Malaysians (not just the Malays) to flee Malaysia for example racial discrimination, freedom to express, political powers trying to put their "Yes, sir!" players in various government agencies and even universities, better qualification, quality of education, laid back working culture and personal/family problems. However, lets be honest, money is still the main factor for this case. You don't have to pretend you are not after the money. Have some class, please! The Pound Sterling has gone down now like a falcon diving to its prey and Malaysians in London are like, 'aiyoh, matilah macam ni!'.

I haven't got the chance to read the hundreds pages long of the New Economic Model, but on the surface it looks good. To be honest, in principle, NEP still looks good to me - eradicating the poor not based on racial grounds. I guess what some people are angry about NEP is how the leaders implemented NEP - targeting the Malays/Bumiputras in most cases. I have heard things like, "you got this scholarship because you are a Malay" or "I want to groom you to be my successor because you are a Malay" or "the project is given to you because your company is a Malay company" and I will be insulted if I got these remarks. Since I was a MARA scholar (I love you, MARA) to do my Masters here in London, I was competing with other creme de la creme of Bumiputras/Malays. So the question of if I am a Malay for this case should not arise. However those remarks do happen. And of course surely this will breed racism.

My first thought on the NEM was how the Prime Minister can actually deal with the 'ultra Malays' in the likes of PERKASA or even some within UMNO. NEM approach is more towards needs based rather than racial based as NEP is perceived and for that I give my two thumbs up. The fact of the matter is, there are still more of poor Bumiputras (Malays, Ibans, Kadazans, Muruts, Orang Asli etc) compared to the Chinese so I do not understand why PERKASA should make a big deal out of it (and uttering dirty words during interviews at the same time). On the other hand, please, do not be angry or jealous if the Bumiputras and Indians are seen to be preferred still because everyone should know we have the responsibility to help the poor. Please have the spirit of helping people not based on colour. Poor people can be from the Chinese too and poor people here are mostly 'Orang Putih pujaan wanita Malaysia'... I am just pulling your legs ladies you know I love you.

Okay I know PERKASA talks about the protecting 'Bumiputra Rights' as enshrined in the Constitution. Let me tell you no one is going to take that away from you at the moment because Pakatan Rakyat clearly stated it in their Common Policy Framework-under-progress that it will be based on the Federal Constitution (Bumiputra rights, Islam as the national religion, Bahasa as national language etc). The Chinese you accused of 'taking over' in the 13th General Election also have the Article 153 in the Chinese-dominant party policy like DAP as claimed by Encik Tony Pua via his Twitter (and accusing me of reading Utusan only at the same time). The question is though, what is 'Bumiputra rights'?

I did ask DAP leaders Encik Lim Kit Siang and Encik Tony Pua (since the latter claimed, I quote "your 153" is in his party's policy) what is their interpretation of 'Special Bumiputra rights'. What are these rights? Both however, did not answer despite asking them three times politely! Maybe it was such a hard question for Non-Bumi dominant party leaders like DAP that they refused to answer.

I myself do not have the answer. I am not going to ask the same question to the UMNO leaders because their answer will turn out to be the obvious. But I am not generalising. Some may have different perspective regarding Article 153. I do want to make my own interpretation however. When we talk about safeguarding the rights of the indigenous people under Article 153 I will start to imagine the plight of the Red Indians in the States, the Africans of the then Apartheid South Africa and the aborigines/Torres Strait Islanders of Australia. In a way, Article 153 should be seen as a priority measure to keep the original people's identity, customs, possessions and general happiness in tact. Oh now please, I am NOT saying the rest are 'pendatang' and should be sent out of the country. Their identity should be protected too. But ultimately, we do not want Malaysia to be perceived as 'Little China' like Singapore or second, crazier England like the States while the minority or the original people will somehow lose their centuries old identities.

What makes Malaysia great is that we are allowed to keep our various identities of all different races and religions under one roof. Plus, everyone should live in harmony and respect each other. They should not see a Malay blogger as a racist UMNO cyber trooper who reads Utusan only, a Chinese who is always a rich towkeh and cheat people money, an Indian who only can cook curry and poor, a Sikh who must only don the turban (when you know the women must not) or Sabahans and Sarawakans live in the jungle. They should really know and respect each other. Even wearing the non-type traditional costumes wouldn't hurt but cool! People go to the same one school... This is what I call the ultimate Malaysian dream.

Speaking of identity, Deputy Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin was given the acid 1Malaysia test by Encik Lim Kit Siang by asking him if he is a Malay first or a Malaysian first. If you read the concept of 1Malaysia properly, people should see themselves as Malaysians first. I know our DPM is only safeguarding the Malay support that he has via UMNO, but if you ask me if I am a Malaysian first, I will say no. I am indeed a Muslim first and the rest like being a Malay, Malaysian, Arsenal fan, KL-Selangor born and bred, rock star wannabe will only come second, and will always be. No, I am not a kopiah wearing, 'holier than thou' kind of guy but I strictly believe Islam covers everything that is inside the world and also the afterlife so that is why I should be Muslim first.

I don't know about you guys but this is not about me. I am just a skinny guy trying to make a living (famous tagline in KMYS). The point I am making is that it is okay to be what you want to be and to keep your identity however you like. It does not necessarily have to be which one is first, or second, or last. It's your choice, really.

Finally, I would like to take this opportunity to also send the words of comfort and condolences to the families of Sibu MP Datuk Robert Lau and Hulu Langat MP Datuk Dr. Zainal and I hope the leaders from both factions don't get too excited about the upcoming by-elections when it is really a time for us to mourn or atleast say some prayers.

Jeg Hui


Zaid said...

bravo for having the courage to stand up and say "i'm a muslim first and foremost"! indeed everything else is secondary.

Jeg Hui said...

this article is too long don't you think?

I am forever a Muslim first. No logic if there's no God. there must be a purpose why we are here.