We are all class-ed multiculturalists now!

By: Azly Rahman

Growing up in a Malay kampong in Johor Bahru, having been born in a British Military hospital in Singapore, schooled in Kuantan, Seremban, Shah Alam and moving from one realm of cultural experience to the next, living in from one enclave to another in the process of being schooled and in the process of being and becoming an educator, ending up in a town a half and hour’s drive from New York City where I have lived for several years, I sometimes wonder if all these makes me a “cultural construction” of “multi-ethnicity” or a “Malay” still? Or — how “Malay” am I still? Or — what is a Malay”? as I would ask what is an “American”?

Here in the United States where I teach a course called “Cross-Cultural Perspectives” in which trying to engage my students in the works of Edward Said, Clifford Geertz, Renato Rosaldo, and the like, I find myself again, having to interrogate my “subjectivity and objectivity” as a “culturally-constructed being” in my attempt to play the role of Socrates in dialogue with my students in our exploration of the multiple meaning of culture.

Each semester is a learning experience, teaching me newer ideas of what “culture, race, and ethnicity” means. I look forward to the intensive classroom discussions by the “hybrid and hyphenated human beings” in my class — those whose family background present a rich tapestry of ethnicity in a sea of creativity called the human race.

I have had pure Afghans, Colombians, Puerto Ricans, Turks, Greeks, Irish, Australians, Ghanaian, Nigerian, Russian, Israeli, Cuban, Iranian, Taiwanese, mainland Chinese, Australian, Japanese, Vietnamese, Indian, Jamaican, Egyptian, Bangladeshi, Saudi Arabian, and a hybrid of all many of these. There were Indonesians too. But no Malaysians yet.

My first question on the first day of class to them is: how multicultural are we? How do we see culture as a “construct” that will enable human progress towards peace, social justice, and liberation? These are indeed big words I have set them to explore.

Is race and ethnicity an illusion and a mental construction? Or is it real as real as body and flesh we fight with using and used by the rhetoric of nationalism in honor of our country right or wrong? How might education help bring about the desired changes in the way we translate concepts to practice?

Malaysians had just celebrated her 51st. Merdeka/Independence celebration and merely a few months after the most decisive and exciting by-election in history; one in which not only many are saying “the political fate of the country lies” but also one in which race and religion has become ever more prominent as a decisive factors.

Against the background of the celebration lies a Malaysia that is engaging in yet another ritual of a “nation perpetually in narration”: the Merdeka celebrations.

Consider the proclamation below:

“Our Nation, Malaysia is dedicated to:

Achieving a greater unity for all her people; maintaining a democratic way of life; creating a just society in which the wealth of the nation shall be equitably distributed; ensuring a liberal approach to her rich and diverse cultural tradition, and building a progressive society which shall be oriented to modern science and technology.

We, the people of Malaysia, pledge our united efforts to attain these ends, guided by these principles:

• Belief in God
• Loyalty to King and Country
• Upholding the Constitution
• Sovereignty of the Law, and
• Good Behaviour and Morality”

— From the Rukunegara, circa 1970

So… what happened?

The words above constructed and proclaimed in 1970, after the bloody riots of May 13, 1969, contained internal contradictions if we are to analyze it today.

As the country approached 31 August 2008, we read the following stories:

– ISA arrests that have confusing and the hypocritical dimensions surrounding these

– a national coalition front undergoing implosion and falling apart

– an irate Prime Minister mulling action against a blogger flying the Malaysian flag upside down, in cyberspace; an action that finally materialised through the arrest of the blogger

– a by-election campaign in Pematang Pauh in Penang, that rears the ugliness of smear campaigns focusing on race, religion, and personal issues instead of presenting solutions to national crises;

– an aborted Bar Council forum on conversion to Islam, disrupted by groups claiming to represent the survival and dignity of Malaysian Muslims;

– an angry Vice Chancellor of an all-Bumiputra university threatening to file suit Chief Minister of Selangor for the latter’s suggestion that Universiti Teknologi MARA be open to non-Bumiputras;

– a teacher in Selangor reprimanded and transferred for hurling racial slurs at her Malaysian school-children of Indian origin;

– the continuing and intensified work of the Prime Minster of Malaysia’s propaganda outfit, Biro Tata Negara in ensuring that the ideology “Ketuanan Melayu” remain funneled into the minds of Malay students, educators, and civil servants;

– the continuing refusal of the Ministry of Higher Education to grant freedom to students to gain concepts and skills of political consciousness by its refusal to radically revise the University and University Colleges Act;

– an increasingly cacaphonic and toxic relationship between the Executive, Judiciary, and Legislative; as a consequence of the 22-year rule of the previous Prime Minister, Dr. Mahathir Mohamad

– a hyper-modernized country trapped in the excesses of nationalism and globalization in an age wherein the global food and energy crisis is taking its toll on the economic and political lives of nations.

Those are amongst the snapshot items of Malaysia circa 51 years of Merdeka/Independence. The composite image of a system of divide and conquer left by the British colonials continue to be artistically refined into subdivisions of divide and conquer, aided by the propaganda machine of the ruling class. Malaysia is seeing the image of the little brown brothers that are becoming the new colonizers and transforming into emperors in new clothes.

If the words of the proclamation are to be our benchmarks of Merdeka, we must ask these questions:

– how have we fostered unity amongst nation, when our government promotes racism thorough racialized policies and by virtue that our politics survive on the institutionalization of racism?

– how have we maintained a democratic way of life, when our educational, political, and economic institutions do not promote democracy in fear that democratic and multicultural voices of conscience are going to dismantle race-based ideologies?

– how are we to create a just society in which the wealth of the nation is equitably distributed, when the New Economic Policy itself is designed based on the premise that only one race need to be helped and forever helped whereas at the onset of Independence poverty exists even amongst Malaysians of all races?

– how are we to promote a liberal approach to diverse culture and tradition when our education system is run by politicians who are championing Ketuanan Melayu alone and ensure that Malay hegemony rules in all levels and all spheres of education, from pre-school graduate levels?

– how are we to build a progressive society based on science and technology when our understanding of the role of science and society do not clearly reflect our fullest understanding of the issues of scientific knowledge, industrialization, and dependency?

Are we seeing a failed Malaysia? Has racial politics brought this nation into chaos?

Across the board the country is in distress; education in shambles, polarized, and politicized, economy is in constant dangerous flux, judiciary is in deep crisis of confidence, public safety is of major concern due the declining public confidence in the police, and politics remain ever divided along racial and religious lines.

This is the Malaysian picture of Dorian Gray, one that shows the image of a “vibrant nation of progress and harmony, and racial tolerance and a robust economy” but behind it is a deformed Malaysia that is merely a continuation of a feudal and colonial entity.

The colonized has become the colonizer. The once oppressed is now oppressing. The ignorant is educating the educated. In a world of the blind the one-eyed man is king.

The State has become a totalitarian entity using the ideological state apparatuses to silent the voices of progressive change. The nationalists have nationalized the wealth of the nation for themselves and perhaps siphoning the nation’s wealth internationally.

This is the picture of a broken promise made by those who fought for Independence; the vices of the early radical and truly nationalistic Malays, Chinese, Indians, Ibans, Kadazans, Sikhs, etc. of the early Merdeka movement.

How then must Malaysians celebrate its 52 nd. Merdeka? By flying the Jalur Gemilang upside down? Or to do better than this – to put justice in its own place by engineering a multicultural jihad against all forms of excesses of the abuse of power and to de-toxify the nation entire, and next to begin with Year Zero of our cultural revolution through the gentle enterprise called peace and multicultural education?

Herein lies education as a solution.

I believe we need a radical overhaul of everything, philosophically speaking. We have the structures in place built in some instances to a state-of-the-art but we need to replace the human beings running the system.

We have deeply racialized human beings that are running neutral machines. We have ethnocentric leaders running humane systems. We have allowed imperfection and evolving fascism to run our system. We have placed capitalists of culture behind our wheels of industrial progress; people who have the dinosaur brain of ketuanan this or that. We have created these monsters and have unleashed them to run our educational, political, economic, and cultural systems. We have Frankenstein-ised our Merdeka.

We need to re-educate ourselves by reinventing the human beings we will entrust to run our machines.

We must abolish the present system and create a new one; just as how we created our new cities – Putrajaya and Cyberjaya – our symbols of our Oriental Despotism and Asian capitalistic decadence. We must be aware that class in the broadest and most comprehensive sense of the word is what we are dealing with and through class and cultural analyses we can arrive at a different path to a new Merdeka.

This Merdeka, the rakyat, armed with wisdom of a new era, must now speak softly but carry a big stick.

Our struggle for Merdeka has only just begun.

We hope that the ideas of change discussed in our little Malaysian “salons” — from the warongs to online hangout joints — will become impetus to the much needed mega change in consciousness of Malaysians. We hope that radical ideas will be debated in our universities, educational and cultural institutions and consequently affect political changes that would further compel educators to begin redesigning policies through the rejuvenation of thinking.

Malaysians have no choice. We are all class-based multiculturalists now. We must reinvent even the way to think about how we think as Malaysians.

Now — that’s a metacognitive challenge!




PLEASE SIGN THIS PETITION: http://www.petitiononline.com/isa1234/petition.html

  1. #1 by Orangasing on Monday, 22 September 2008 - 3:23 pm

    Thanks Azly.

  2. #2 by pulau_sibu on Monday, 22 September 2008 - 3:29 pm

    How do you face these top students from all over the world, in a free nation, whereas you yourself is from this tiny country that exercises ISA and full of racism. Many people may think you are one of the products of racism. Now, would all these students believe in you, and believe in your quality? I may simply reject your class if I were one of the students in your institution.

    Perhaps when you are outside boleh, people from all over the world just treat you as a Malaysian. They are so fair and never prejudge you. Those bull’sheep’ things are all out of scope and are no longer important.

    Please go to demonstrate against Najiv as he goes to the UN general assembly.

  3. #3 by delCapo on Monday, 22 September 2008 - 4:10 pm

    FREE RPK!!!

    be there at 9am tomorrow Jalan Duta Court


  4. #4 by wifeejane on Monday, 22 September 2008 - 4:42 pm

    Saudara LKS please pose this article onto AAB block too so as to remind him how little he have achieve in multicultural integration. Show how childish he is to invoke ISA on 3 unarm and and non threaterning people to the nation. Show how stupid his people are to copy the ways of running Malaysia in the british way i.e. seperate and rule.

  5. #5 by lew1328 on Monday, 22 September 2008 - 4:42 pm


    This is a not a story but the true that shoots deep into the heart of each Malaysian.

    Thus, change is a MUST now. We rejected the government racist game.

    We all urged here: ‘Free Raja Petra K.’

  6. #6 by ktteokt on Monday, 22 September 2008 - 4:49 pm

    This may be the umpteenth time I am harping on the Rukunegara which has become a sorry document of glory at one point in time. Just want to know how BN can substantiate creating a “just society” when everything is so unjust and the NEP and Malay special rights are still being enforced?

    And just how “equittable” is the distribution of the nation’s wealth with so many cronies sucking the nation dry?

    And what orientation in science and technology can we boast about when our PM can make such a stupid statement as “the DNA is outdated”?

    There is only one place where the Rukunegara should be, i.e. in the toilet to be used to wipe asses!

  7. #7 by melurian on Monday, 22 September 2008 - 4:58 pm

    u ppl so funny, everytime there’s crisis there would be petition. petition can be faked you know. and that reminds me lim keng yaik in parlimen:

    [i]”Saya tahu you boleh pergi ambil tandatangan sejuta, saya pun tidak boleh buat Yang Berhormat [Dewan riuh] Sejuta ringgit barangkali bolehlah. [Ketawa] Tetapi sejuta tandatangan, tidak payah, tidak boleh. So, tolonglah. Ini adalah satu masalah perniagaan. This is a business problem. Not a siaran problem atau siaran Mandarin, siaran Melayu atau siaran Tamil. You mahu, pergilah hidupkan siaran itu.”[/i]

    and nazri’s opinion:

    “If we MPs are not convinced, how can we amend the Constitution? We can’t listen to the views of just 1,000 lawyers. Since when was the view of 1,000 lawyers more important than that of the 11 million who voted for us?”


    so what is 1000+ or 10000+ petitioners compare with 11 mil voted for bn ?

  8. #8 by cactus of sarawak on Monday, 22 September 2008 - 5:24 pm

    This article really touched my heart. If the writer didn’t say he is a Malay. I will think of other races other than Malay. Sorry for that statement. This is what we call educated person. Not like some of the so called “profesor kangkung” in our country that shout out loud in defending the stupid educational policies and know nothing about the meaning of the word “EDUCATION”. Bravo, Azly Rahman.

  9. #9 by digdegree on Monday, 22 September 2008 - 6:07 pm

    I was most impressed with your perspective. However, I think you have a problem…the language used was probably best suited for a University assignment…Sorry!

    Having said this, I will join Cactus of Sarawak in saying, Bravo, Azly Rahman.

    When are you returning to Malaysia?

  10. #10 by ganges on Monday, 22 September 2008 - 7:30 pm

    Azly This is a fantastic piece.We dont get to write this kind of articles in our BN system.Thank God you left this BN education system long time ago. Othewise with your kind of intelligence and unselfish brains you would have been a vegetable by now under the clawed clutches of kerismuddin. Please sharpen it further ,cos elsewhere I have suggested that once Anwar comes in, I would like to see you as our Education Minister so that you can bring in massive changes to our dying Educational system and bring it to a world class standard.

  11. #11 by baochingtian on Monday, 22 September 2008 - 7:31 pm

    A far-sighted one. Well said n well touched. TQ Azly frm the bottom of my heart.

  12. #12 by baochingtian on Monday, 22 September 2008 - 7:40 pm

    yes, all ministers n govt officers should read this article.

  13. #13 by lopez on Monday, 22 September 2008 - 9:09 pm

    indeed at first read such bold thinking would surely be impressive, imagine if many of us can have the opportunity to profess on the topic year in year out , then supposedly this blog would not have existed and if it does it would be very interesting and not mere… ohh you are right , very right, why did i thought of it.

    because many were being denied of those formative years

    nevetheless, it would only be beneficial to a rojak nation such as bolihland where the dire need to manage and produce quality succession citizens is so damn acute.
    How then…start with the human resource development and not the special entreprenuers department and then the moe and not the school children and the teachers,
    And the schools must be devoid of frankenstein political commisars and self acclaimed professorry , the facilities shall be decorated with no trace of ethnicity and without green colour walls and wet toilets.
    The substances shall be pure education in its strictest sense and cultivation of creative minds …….the rests are by products

    are we close enough..what do you think?

  14. #14 by richmom on Monday, 22 September 2008 - 9:50 pm

    Azly is in globalised and openminded society but we malaysians 99%only heard of the jargon.The 1% governing elite denying the global changes because of fear in losing power,maruah,prosperity and too much to lose.

  15. #15 by Anak Msia on Monday, 22 September 2008 - 9:55 pm

    it is so touching.

    Azly, your article should posted to all websites to reach as many Malaysian as it can, this will create more harmony society in the future.

  16. #16 by cemerlang on Monday, 22 September 2008 - 11:09 pm

    Whether we hate it or like it, Malaysia is practising limited democracy and U.S. is practising unlimited democracy. If you can afford it, you would rather be in the U.S. because over there, you can express your real self. In Malaysia, you have to live according to the norms. Malays who can afford it will prefer to go out from Malaysia. There are a number of them in the U.S. now.

    As for the Ketuanan Melayu, you see, if you don’t obey, you get nothing not just from the Malays but also the non Malays who just love to polish their shoes. Sometimes we have to be reminded that it is not just the Malays that you have to deal with but also Chineses or Indians who would help them to get benefits for themselves. The good example is the latest incident whereby Miss Teresa was kidnapped by the enforcers of ISA. It seems that somebody from the Malaysian Chinese Association purposelly said something to his Malay counterparts. Isn’t that a betrayal on a Chinese from another Chinese ? This all sounds very racist because Malaysia has a big problem with racism. If we are really multi-racial, UMNO should not head the Barisan Nasional and Islam will just be one of the more popular religions. But the reality is UMNO is the leader and it is another way of telling us that we are second or third to the Malays.

  17. #17 by One4All4One on Monday, 22 September 2008 - 11:58 pm

    First, a salute to Mr Azly Rahman for voicing out what many, many Malaysians have wanted to say for a very long, long time.

    Having said that, what Mr Azly wrote about is not something new. In fact, due recognition must be given to those many, many Malaysians who had remained so silent and unobtrusive to show their actual and hidden opinions, dreams, wishes and desires.

    Call it forced silencing of the voices by design or accident, Malaysians who were once truly carefree, multicultural, forward looking and multi-talented, had been made to remain silent on many issues and fronts. In a sense, Malaysians’ growth culturally and developmentally had been stunted, thwarted, impeded and arrested.

    In a fertile and robust social make-up such as Malaysia, there are bound to be different opinions, approaches, ideologies, inclinations, etc., and if the peoples are allowed to pursue and cultivate their interests and vocations, a truly heterogeneous, creative, experimental, lively, progressive, universal, and internationalised environment would thrive and survive.
    Making it a truly metropolitan and multicultural hub.

    If such a nation is run and administrated in a fair, creative and intelligent manner, surely Malaysia would have been a first in many, many ways which other countries would only dreamed of.

    Alas, Malaysia and Malaysians were robbed of that possibility. The once mighty Malaya and Malaysia had been reduced to a land where its more adventurous, intellectually, and entrepreneurship-driven individuals were driven off-shore to seek greener pastures.

    Attempts to lure those gifted and able rakyat home proved futile. Prejudice, discrimination, weak leadership and parochialism had done Malaysia so much harm.

    No doubt, during certain times, the country was able to attract a relatively substantial amount of foreign investment and interests, but that had been relatively small and less impressive in comparison to its true potential. A small nation state down south had done much better in many departments. In comparison, Malaysia’s achievements could be deemed as mediocre and sub-standard.

    Human resource development had not been given proper attention. Educational development had been slowed by flip-flop, indecisive, and uninspiring policies. Race relation had been hijacked by racialism, parochialism, and supremacy attitudes. Democracy is selective, discriminatory and subject to whims and fancies. Unfair social engineering, ethnic-driven administration and policing, race-based politics, biased policies…proved to be self-destructive formulas for the nation.

    The average citizens were, at best, sidelined and abused by the elite and well-connected. They are given raw deals in terms of wages and benefits. They are only the servants of the high and mighty. One just have to browse through glossy and self-aggrandising magazines in the book stands to see the gross and unthinkable differences in lifestyles and pursuits of the two divides, that of the haves and the haves-not.

    Malaysia can do better by practising fairer, more humane, intelligent, politically and socially correct policies. Collective accountability, integrity, and impartiality have to be stepped up to do justice to the needs of the rakyat.

    Administrators, educators, politicians, leaders, entrepreneurs and more people in the mould of Mr Azly Rahman would certainly be a boon and asset to the country. But the environment and atmosphere must be conducive for such desirable traits and attitudes to be cultivated.

    Let’s hope that something good would come out of the current impasse and confusing and uninspiring situation.

    Let’s move on.

  18. #18 by trublumsian on Tuesday, 23 September 2008 - 1:46 am

    education is the solve, azly. i sat in classrooms not unlike the ones you led. in america you find the biggest melting pot in the world, yet the social fabric that was inadvertently weaved worked wonders given the presumptive alternatives in other parts of the world. malaysia has 3 main races, only 3, by golly! in america, cultural and racial unrests are beset by groups who felt disenfranchised but hapless, often due to a lack of attainment in education, despite affirmative action policies; and one will be hard pressed to find the middle class, irrespective of race, participating. universally, the middle class are the educated.

    to melurian, the one with core of a donut as brain, 11 million votes for bn was exactly the antithesis of what made america’s melting pot work. scan the world of repressive regime, you will not find tyrannic governments who WANT the power base to have their own discerning capabilities, you know, the likes of millions of kampung voters and uitm’s stick-waving so-called students! yes, i said it, the fact that education in this country is messed up, umno benefits.

  19. #19 by clear conscience mirror on Tuesday, 23 September 2008 - 5:04 am

    YB LKS

    This is exactly what I had posted on Chedet.com which somehow touched on the same basic tenets of Malaysian co-existence life. My posting reads as follows:-

    Dear Tun

    Well said but deep inside your heart, do you think it works even with the rejuvenation of the concept to accommodate the younger generation needs?

    I doubt so, having seen what the Government and UMNO in particular had done for the past 51 years in power.

    It is not the changing of the shirt that matters in essence but more towards whether the body is suitable. An oversize or under size shirt does not fit into the body. that simple. No matter what you call it, a black pot is still a black pot even if you were to disguise it a white pot.

    Your above items 19 and 20 particularly on, quoting you and unquoting you here “but I would like to suggest the component parties should stop blaming each other, stop taking pot-shots at each other. Instead they should all come together and review the structure of BN. They should try for a win-win or lose-lose solution in dealing with inter-party relations. They should listen to the people and to their own members and find ways to satisfy their needs; to overcome their dissatisfaction. There must be some new thinking on the BN concept. But the basic premises about close collaboration between the parties, about the need to help each other, to accommodate and deal with grouses together should be maintained” holds truth only if the demands by the minority BN component parties (MCA, Gerakan, MIC and other Sarawak/Sabah-based parties) are met with a sincere UMNO heart to resolve grouses without the ill-intentions of just helping the Malays. It will only work out if UMNO:-

    i) sees it in the context of Malaysian Malaysia, helping all Malaysians irrespective of race, color or creed
    ii) fair in all decisions in terms of opportunities for all Malaysians although the special rights of Malays is undeniable
    iii) walk the talk and not just talk the talk (meaning saying one thing and doing another thing behind the back of others)
    iv) be transparent in all dealings with each and every other race
    v)determined to eradicate corruption and abuse of power by any leader
    v) Malaysian laws must apply to all Malaysians fairly; irrespective of race, color and creed
    vi)not oppress Malaysians but instead help them irrespective of their political divide inclination
    vii) respectful of each other’s religion, cultures, social needs and practices etc

    Although many politicians deem these may be not be achievable in the context of a multi-racial country like Malaysia, it is not what is perceived as possible or not but more of whether there is a desire to make it possible. Remember the word “IMPOSSIBLE”. If you break it up, by essence dismantling the impossible, it will become “I’m possible”. It all boils down to the “niat”, determination and visions of all politicians across the race divide.

    No matter how many Acts being enacted such as the Race Relations Act would resolve the differences amongst races in Malaysia if the above (i) to (vii) are not addressed. Let’s face reality, Tun. I believe with your experience and exposure into politics, deep inside your heart…….it only works within these context of equality amongst all Malaysians. Let’s not cover up by blaming the demise of BN on just one person but more towards the mechanism BN was “constituted” and “the structure it premised upon”. Reality remains reality.

    Being fair to all is expounded in all religions in the world. God had commanded this need to be practised dearly and anyone amongst us homo sapiens who does not adhere to God’s words shall not be able to achieve results. Let’s not be guided by greed as greed in our holy books spell out it’s unacceptable.

    Let’s be guided and adhere to God’s words in dealing with each other. History has proven and will prove again that it either works or not at all.

  20. #20 by yhsiew on Tuesday, 23 September 2008 - 6:45 am

    I hope PR will bring us positive change and create a harmonious, loving and caring multiracial society that is accepted by all in this country.

  21. #21 by chin on Tuesday, 23 September 2008 - 7:31 am

    In Malaysia, we need people like you (Azly Rahman). You should consider coming back & help the nation. Thats should be your “self actualization”. Where money can’t buys.

  22. #22 by limaho on Tuesday, 23 September 2008 - 9:38 am

    I can relate to Azly’s comments. I left Malaysia 30 years ago and recently returned to spend 2 weeks there. In that short time, I could see how different Malaysia is today compared to my early years there. The poverty I noticed in certain pockets was so extreme that I felt like crying. The taxi driver who drove me from the airport to my hotel gave me a quick run drown of the politics – unless you are UMNO cronies you will find life hard.

  23. #23 by zak_hammaad on Tuesday, 23 September 2008 - 10:30 am

    Azly contributes regularly on RPK’s blog; now that is saying something about the guy!

  24. #24 by Malaysian Always on Tuesday, 23 September 2008 - 2:49 pm

    zak_hamaad: are you saying that Azly’s article is biased? Please clarify.

    Azly: If you were to post this article to BN members and govt servants, it won’t do. The education system they have underwent will not enable them to understand the depth of your literature. It’s best if you could reproduce this in primary 1 english.

  25. #25 by AhPek on Tuesday, 23 September 2008 - 3:50 pm

    ‘The taxi driver who drove me from the airport to my hotel gave me a quick run
    down of the politics-unless you are UMNO cronies you find life hard.’. limaho.

    Absolutely spot on this run down given to you.You know how amazingly accurate the news on the local scene one can get from the ordinary man in thestreet,very often better than political analysts for a very simple reason …government policies hit quickest and hardest on Joe Public, the elites ie UMNOPUTRAS (which include all elites of the civil service,Police,Army,Judiciary,AG chambers etc etc) hardly anything.A typical example is the steep rise of petrol and rise of food prices.The elites travel in cars provided by the tax payers with petrol thrown in too and very often they abuse such prvileges as well.Buka Puasa for them is done in 5-star hotels on somebody’s account.

  26. #26 by AhPek on Tuesday, 23 September 2008 - 3:53 pm

    correction: ‘Absolutely spot on …………………………………ie UMNOPUTRAS (….
    ….) will feel hardly any impact.’.

  27. #27 by Loh on Tuesday, 23 September 2008 - 6:49 pm

    ///Is race and ethnicity an illusion and a mental construction? Or is it real as real as body and flesh we fight with using and used by the rhetoric of nationalism in honor of our country right or wrong? How might education help bring about the desired changes in the way we translate concepts to practice?///Azly Rahman

    The fact that race, the prominent one, Malay has to be defined using the parameter of religion, language and culture where adherence to it was left undefined in article 160 of the constitution says that race, as far as in respect of Malay, is a synthetic construct.
    The glue binding the people classified to the so-called ethnic group is article 153 of the constitution. It offers them the privileges, which since the removal of the provision for a review, allowed the people classified therein to claim the rights as pride of the community. The forefathers who created the political party which over the last 51 years have been seizing more political power than the proportionate share of the population allowed. Further participation in politics under the aegis of the race-based party has become the most lucrative occupation mankind has ever created where rewards overcompensated their efforts, and in the process the vast majority of the population slave for the luxury enjoyed by a small well connected population. Race and religion serves to divide the masters and the subjects, which are facilitated through education which hones their art in political games. Education cannot change the stakeholders who are able to take advantage of others with impunity, and in the society where shame in unjust practices has lost its meaning which is despised only by those who had no power to change.

  28. #28 by bystander on Tuesday, 23 September 2008 - 7:57 pm

    Dr Azly is what you would term “Towering Malay” unlike the umnoputras and members who are all “kampung melayu”.

  29. #29 by lopez on Tuesday, 23 September 2008 - 9:53 pm

    yes yes yes so bold yet so damn naive, just because this guy lectures in one of the universities (as claimed ) in the us of a outrights as good offering

    Are u so immersed with such wordings that you do not have the slightest twinch in your oppressed minds that cousins of the us of a also have many deserving thoughs too if not offensive ones.

    So before being labelled as a yes men please lah ponder sikit sikt lah you deserve it if you claimed to be a equally constructive vocal and a wananbe critic.

  30. #30 by lopez on Tuesday, 23 September 2008 - 10:03 pm

    And what says his cousins and distant relatives….er er sorry lah i do know lah because i admit i dont know their language and cultures. and i dont try to bluff my way out.

    Thats the matter ,,,,the language and cultures of other people….dont just jump into the band wagon……i

    Unlike in bilihland some of us think they know what is good for others, even some thinks they are more superior but actually only in quantity only.

    So when preferential treatment begets certain quarters of society , the trigger has been pulled and all hell break lose.

  31. #31 by bystander on Tuesday, 23 September 2008 - 10:05 pm

    Dr Azly cannot come la. because if he does, he will get death threats and maybe under isa like rpk

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