Politics

Who are the Bullies and Who are the Bullied: Time to Do a National Study

Not satisfied with labelling the non-Malays, especially Chinese, as “intruders” brought over by the British to oppress Malays, Isma is now putting forward the argument that ethnic Malays have been subjected to bullying by non-Malays since the colonial period and continuing today.

“Who are the bullied and who are the bullies” is a question asked by Mohd Zul Fahmi, a self annointed analyst of the country’s history and constitution who, just like his Isma colleague, Abdullah Zaik Abd. Rahman is blaming all the ills of the country and the problems of the Malay/Muslim community on the non-Malays.

Many Malaysians, whilst disagreeing with Isma’s view of the Malays as the oppressed in Malaysia today, will agree that the question of who are the bullies in Malaysia; and who are to be blamed for all the problems of the Malay and other communities is a reasonable and pertinent question to examine in depth. 

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But instead of answering this question based on Isma’s potted and racist interpretation of Malaysian history and the biased opinions of Isma and its members, I would like to suggest that a proper survey and study of the topic be conducted by a reputable and independent survey research or academic organization. 

Coverage of Proposed Survey and Study

The survey can cover feedback from all the communities – Malay and non-Malay. Besides posing the question to the public on whether the phenomenon of racial bullying exists as Isma has described it and who is bullying whom if racial bullying is indeed taking place, the survey can also cover other charges made by Isma such as alleged non-Malay and non-Muslim responsibility for the problems of the Malay community as they are to be found today.

The survey can also cover the claim of the former Prime Minister,  Dr. Mahathir, in his blog several months ago that the Chinese (and Indians) are the real masters of the country.  Specifically he wrote that “Because they (the Malays) are willing to share their country with other races, the race from the older civilisation of more than 4,000 years and who are more successful, as such today whatever they have now is also being taken away from them”.

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This allegation and similar comments made by Dr. Mahathir are an important source of  inspiration to ultra-nationalist and extremist forces and are partly responsible for many of the unfounded opinions circulated by Isma and other similar groups and individuals on how the rights and privileges of the Malay community have been usurped by the immigrant communities and how badly they are presently doing.

Our former national leader has since modified his position by emphasising that, despite the surfeit of policies and opportunities provided to Malays, they still remain retarded in their socio-economic standing due to laziness, lack of honesty, prioritization of money more when compared with other communities, and other bad habits. This hard hitting view has only reinforced racial stereotypes on both sides of the racial divide and should not go unchallenged. The study too should ask its respondents as to whether they are in agreement or otherwise with this damning analysis of the Malay community and what policies are necessary to change such a mindset – if it indeed exists and is peculiar to the community.

Dr. Mahathir Mohamed

“How many Malays are there who refuse to settle their debts? They receive scholarships and student loans but refuse to pay back.”

“This is not a question of being unable to, they have the money but just refuse to honour their commitments. We must be honest….I do not like to delude myself or lie to myself. I will call a spade a spade. If some people do not like what I say, it is their choice.”

Meanwhile the allegation that the non-Malays are the real owners and master of the country and that the Malays have been bullied and persecuted to the extent that they need more special protection has also been taken to a new level with religion being brought into the picture.  New groups such as proxies of Jewish Zionist evangelists and other agents of foreign powers are alleged to be interfering in the country’s domestic affairs.

It is possible that Isma’s witch hunt aimed at rallying the Malay and Muslim community to stand firm against those who were intent on burying Islam and “want the Malay race to be in their control ….want to see us insulted as our religion is raped, the dignity of our race trampled on and our country pawned to the point we cannot do anything” may end in tragic violence if nothing is done to refute them or persuade them otherwise. Hopefully the results of the study can address the fears and concerns of Isma, Perkasa, Dr. Mahathir and other paranoid Malays that they have nothing to fear from the other communities; as well as convince them that Malay dominance in the country’s polity is unshakable, and alarm over a non-Malay takeover is totally unjustified.

Funding for the Study

To ensure that this proposal for a scientific and objective survey and study of present race and religious hot button issues now dominating the country’s discourse and media can be carried out, I am willing to fund the work in its entirety. 

My only condition for the work is that a reputable and independent group of scholars from the nation’s universities and abroad should be responsible for drafting the survey questionnaire and determining the methodology; and that the findings of this study will be widely disseminated, including to the government and the National Unity Council so that quick and effective action can be taken to stop the rot in the deterioration of the country’s race and religious relations.

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