...AND WHAT IS SO GOOD IN BEING A MODERATE IF ONE IS MODERATELY EVIL? AND WHAT'S SO BAD BEING AN EXTREMIST, IF ONE IS EXTREMELY KIND?
By Mansor Puteh
The Star has lined up a list of Malaysians, and fortunately, the majority of which are Melayu, that should reflect the racial composition of the population of the country.
If this was not done, the credibility of the Star would come to question.
But there are many other questions that the Star needs to ask itself, some of which are on why are those Melayu who are not Melayu-speaking and writing been given such acholades and why the Star which is an urban English-oriented Chinese and some non-Chinese, giving the recognition that the paper had given due credit?
And why are the majority of the Malaysians who live in the rural areas and away from Lembah Kelang, not saying so?
The few people who were solicited for their views on the idea of moderation cannot represent the majority of the population of the country.
Their views are as bigoted as those by the others who they charge for being bigoted, and ironically they are the Melayu NGOs whose only aim is to ensure that the Perlembagaan Negara or National Constitution is not trampled upon, for which many of the others do not see fit to entertain its core values.
Utusan had played a pivotal role in ensuring that the country gained independence or Merdeka in the ways that truly benefit the whole country - meaning the Melayu country, while the other papers did not do so, and have not shown any inclination to support the main trust of the formation of the country, by first sidlining the use of Bahasa Melayu.
The very least that the Star could do is to have a special column on the learning of the national language, which the other 'chauvinist' Mandarin and Tamil newspapers have also neglected to do, at a time when the use of English in Malaysia is fast fading and losing glamor.
The 'chauvinist' Mandarin and Tamil newspapers have never projected the successes and contributions of the Chinese and Indians in the arts especially those in the film and music industry.
I have not seen any story on Andre Goh in any Chinese newspaper or magazine or the Alleycats in any Tamil newspaper or magazine. They prefer to highlight those from
Taiwan and China and also . India
These can be described as non- or un-Malaysian publications much like the Star which only provides at the most one to two percent coverage on anything concerning the Melayu, other than those who are involved in criminal activities.
None of them had ever highlighted the virtues of non-Melayu (read Chinese and Indian involvement in criminal activities that happen every day and so blatantly and so openly - like the pasting of illegal stickers and stealing of metal objects especially road signs and manholes.
And even the Chinese-dominated so-called anti-crimes organizations and other vocal Chinese and Indian NGOs have also not highlighted the failures of the vernacular Mandarin and Tamil school education which has caused many Chinese and Indian (read Tamil) kids to go astray and had to seek employment in the 'Sektor Jenayah', since they could not be absorbed in the Sektor Awam and Sektor Swasta or Government Sector and Private Sector.
Yet, there are many of them who could find employment opening stalls and operating small trading businesses in the pasar malam and everywhere including food stalls and anywhere they can find a place to peddle their goods.
It is a good thing that these Chinese and Tamil kids can speak some Melayu, or else they are not able to communicate with the Melayu majority consumers who patronize their small trading businesses.
If the Melayu consumers boycot these small trading businesses operated by the Chinese and Tamil school dropouts and more so the major establishments in the many shopping malls and complexes, the economy of the Chinese especially will collapse in a few months.
In fact, this is already happening as we can see the view from Zoo Negara to Dataran Merdeka passing through Jalan Tuanku Abdul Rahman which used to be a Chinese-majority area that is now a Melayu-majority one.
In fact, much of Kuala Lumpur and the major cities and towns including the small towns throughout the country are seeing the surge of Melayu from all sides, with the Chinese now being enclosed in the many tall highrise apartment buildings and Chinadowns and Little Indias which do not reflect the true and magnificent history of immigrating to Malaysia or Tanah Melayu more than one hundred years ago.
And having read and studied what the nine Melayu personalities had written I could come to the conclusion that they are not moderates, but confused Melayu, whose views could only be published in newspapers controlled by the non-Melayu who had cultivated them all these years to 'force' them to speak in tones which the average Melayu do not understand, and who refuse to understand.
They have all neglected to write on these and other matters, preferring those that can ensure that their pieces are okayed by the Star for publication. They know by now what they can write and get published and what they cannot write for the Star.
All of them do not have impressive academic credentials, or who had been given due recognition by the well-meaning Melayu groups in the country, where most of them would find themselves to be odd sitting in. There are many other Melayu who have better and more impressive academic and professional backgrounds than them-lah!
This is how Melayu they are. This is how in-touched with reality they are and can ever be.
And the way from the way they write, proves that they are bent on forcing their views on the others, which makes them to be and sound like bigots that they find difficulty not being able to hide.
The problem with most or all of them is that they seem to think too highly of themselves and especially their views. This is a big problem for bigots but not for moderates.
And I don't think their columns and views are widely read by the real and true moderates in the country.
I can say that their views are mostly second-hand American-style views and the expressions they used are mostly those that had been used by other more vocal Americans of the 1960s who find it thrilling to look at everything in their society to be different, when it was not necessary to do so.
Those who think they know better about the Melayu and Islam, must think that the millions of the Melayu and Muslims in the country to be wrong.
The National Union of Journalist (NUJ) for which I am or should also still be a member should have a survey to see which paper has contributed the most in nation-building and had helped in the struggle to fight for Merdeka.
Even the NUJ has not been vocal in trying to improve the lot of the journalists and editors in the country to help develop and improve the state of Malaysian journalism, one of which is to force those who want to become journalists to have at least an undergraduate degree from any reputable university and those wanting to be appointed editors to have a master's degree.
Malaysian journalism does not seem to have the best qualified people who can write and write with conviction and who have been given international recognition for what they have written all this while.
Some of them have only managed to get their essays and reports out but they are not given any attention outside of the country, whereas filmmakers are asked to seek international recognition, the same is not asked of the journalists and editors.
And lastly, what's so good being a moderate anyway if one is moderately evil? And what's so bad in being an extremist anyway, if one is extremely kind?