Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Foot In Mouth Disease

Came across this article about how the Def Min thinks that a possible reason why there are less than 1% non-Malays in the armed forces is : LACK OF PATRIOTISM.

To quote:

"KUALA LUMPUR: A lack of patriotism was one of the possible reasons for the small number of non-Malays in the armed forces, Defence Minister Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi told Parliament Tuesday."


So by implication, Malay = Patriot. Non-Malay = Non-patriot.

The article then goes on to list other more likely and more pragmatic reasons than that rather up-in-the-air presumption, with:

"Dr Ahmad Zahid said the small number of non-Malays could also be due to various other factors, such as concern over the strict discipline imposed, lower returns compared to jobs in the private sector, lack of encouragement from families and negative perceptions towards the army."

Hmmm. I would suggest that fear of racism, gangsterism, ostracism, bullying, poor reception and poor perception of other races could also be reasons, but then I would be making an outrageous presumption about all parties involved.

There are so many levels of why going on here that this simplistic remark is offensive because it writes off real problems faced by the whole nation as "the other's lack".

Basically, unless you are mainstream Malay, you are the "other", and it is your "lack" that is the source of the mainstream's problems. This is simplistic and unrealistic, and unnecessarily provocative and closed-minded. It is the view of (a collective) ego so weak in self-esteem it must bring others down in order to justify its actions and words.

Surely we are beyond this?!

Malaysia, the best way to get mature behaviour from our leaders is to EXPECT it and to express our disappointment when it doesn't happen. Funnily, it's the same way you teach kids to grow up too.


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