Saturday, December 17, 2011


By Mansor Puteh

The Chinese and also Indians in Malaysia have all tried to live on their own in their little enclaves created by the early British colonial authority where they were provided with all the basic amenities, and live away from the Melayu majority.

They were given land and financial allocations to allow them to do so. And it is this mentality that the British had infused into their thinking that they had brought out of the ‘new villages’ and beyond the era of British administration of Malaya to the present time.

Unfortunately, the Melayu government leaders have fallen to accommodate them simply because the Melayu and Muslim voters have been split into many factions so that they are able to do so.

The Melayu in the country have been so split by the cunning relationship that was created by the minorities who pressed them and those in the opposition so that if they do not comply with their wishes, the Melayu cannot get their votes.

In the end the minorities get what they want and more, while the Melayu get less and less.

Unfortunately, this desperation expressed by the minority Chinese mostly happens because the younger generation of Chinese who are less inclined to accept their old-fashioned way of thinking and have started to assimilate.

The reason being they realize that the Chinese countries of Hong Kong, Taiwan and China do not really care for them, and there are so few of the Chinese from Malaysia who would want to return to these countries.

They’d rather go to America, England, Australia and the other countries in the west, where they can be overwhelmed by the majority and dominant race, where they are not bothered to be disturbed by the type of chauvinism that they had experienced in Malaysia, all being created by their own community and political leaders who continue to harp on vernacular education and the subsidiary issues surrounding it.

There is a sizeable number of Chinese who had preferred to move to Singapura which unfortunately only accept those with superior academic qualification and not those who do not have such qualities.

The situation, however, makes it even worse for the other Chinese who cannot move on, so they are stuck with where they are and in the process will slowly have to assimilate with the majority and dominant Melayu whose numbers are also fast growing.

Yet, the Chinese and also Indians have not done anything to thank the Melayu for helping their ancestors when they were in such a bad shape, who came to Tanah Melayu wearing the same clothes and smelling so bad, sailing in junks and being served with bad food with so many of them looking like skeletons when they first landed in the country with the men and boys wearing their ‘tokchang’ or pig-tails.

Where are the poems, short stories, novels, television dramas and feature films depicting the arrival of the immigrants from China and India to Tanah Melayu?

There is one such film called, ‘Kinta 1881’ produced by a Chinese film company in Malaysia. It failed because the present generation of Chinese in Malaysia did not want to see it. They did not want to be told how crude and unlawful their ancestors were.

Of course, there was heroism in the film but alas, it is not enough to pacify the Chinese viewers to want to see it. The film will make them feel guilty.

And the Chinese in Malaysia do not want to feel guilty for having been supported by the Melayu, and who have not yet shown any gratitude to them for having made them prosper. They want more.

They want more land, money and scholarships, yet, they still insist on having their way with education, despite the many decades they have been here, with the present generation of Chinese who are third or fourth generation of immigrants.

Yet, they speak horrible Melayu. They do not know the sensitivities of the Melayu and Muslims with their women and girls wearing skimpy clothes even when visiting Melayu families during their religious festivals.

Worse, when they still avoid patronizing stores and business outlets operated by the Melayu.

The Melayu, on the other hand, still continue to prefer giving the Chinese their business, for without which the businesses of the Chinese would go bust.

That is also why there could be a small sundry store operated by the Chinese in the middle of a Melayu village or ‘kampung’, where the Melayu patronize.

If the Melayu had avoided it, the Chinese would not be able to get any business and would have to sell the store to the Melayu.

But the Melayu did not care for religion, race or the color of the skin.

The Chinese in Malaysia always do that.

So one can see motor workshops operated by the Chinese having Melayu and some Indian customers. Whereas those operated by the Melayu not having a single Chinese or even Indian customer.

The Chinese motorcar owner whose vehicle stalls in front of a workshop operated by the Melayu will dare to ask the Melayu mechanic where he could find a workshop operated by the Chinese.

The Chinese motorcar owners do not send their vehicles to workshops operated by the Melayu.

This is how the Chinese in Malaysia operated. This is also how the Melayu have been treating them with kindness, yet, they are still being charged for being biased and prejudiced.

There are also some Chinese political and community leaders who have charged the Melayu for practicing ‘apartheid’.

The only apartheid that exists in Malaysia today is the Chinese apartheid. This happens when they insist on having their own schools so their children could study in them. They did not want to send them to the national schools.

So this is a strange apartheid system whereby the Chinese minority chooses to discriminate against themselves and do not wish to assimilate with the majority Melayu in the country.

Yet, when the Chinese and also Indian school children grow up, all of them insist on joining the national schooling system from Form One on to university.

Not many of them would want to continue studying in the vernacular secondary schools.

And there is also no insistence on the part of the Chinese and Indians to have their own universities where Mandarin and Tamil are the mediums of instruction, because they know graduates from such universities will not have any future in Malaysia or even in China, Hong Kong, Taiwan and India.

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