Thursday, August 18, 2005

"Oh...you're from Malaysia...so you're a Malay then?"

Continuing from my previous post, where I was mentioning about the 9-year-old-girl-O-negative chain message, I said that it was a hoax. So, let's check back what's the meaning of 'hoax.' According to thefreedictionary.com, hoax means:
1. An act intended to deceive or trick.
2. Something that has been established or accepted by fraudulent means.

So, yes. I insist that the SMS was a hoax indeed as people who got the SMS with good and sincere intentions will attempt to call the number but finally got into the voicemail. So, somehow the first definition was implied here. Please do not argue further with me. Thank you.

OK. Arguments aside, here was a paper cutting which I came across from the freely-distributed Metro newspaper, which is equivalent to The Sun ( our Malaysian version of course, not the UK version, where you get full breasts exposed on Page 3 in The Sun in UK here). That piece of news was news-worthy enough to get a small mentioning in their news. You may click on the picture for a larger version.



But WTF??? So are all the people from Malaysia are called Malays then? Not that I have anything against them calling us alltogether Malays if we have all the equal rights and opportunities (which does not seem to happen now or in near future), but how can they not differentiate nationality and ethnicity? So, to save space in that small little column, they used 'Malay' as a contraction for Malaysians then?

Another error in the article, if you happened to be observant enough was she had her operation in KL. Nope, it was in PENANG.

I remembered once when I was backpacking around Europe and I still got questions from other fellow backpackers asking where was I from. When I answered Malaysia, I got this sort of conversation:

Person A: Oh...I thought that you are from China. (And they looked puzzled on how on earth a Chinese end up in Malaysia; they expect to see a darker skin bloke.) Duh!

or

Person B: Oh, then you're a Malay then?
Me: No, no. I'm still Chinese but I'm Malaysian.
...Puzzled look again...

Jeff Ooi's blog, MCA's election and Uncle Lim were heavily discussing about the creating a utopia of a Bangsa Malaysia or just plainly Malaysian, before any ethnicity comes in. The creation about us being proud of our identities as Malaysians.

If South Asian migrants in UK were granted citizenships after staying for less than 10 years ( I do not have the actual facts here but just take it as a relative comparison) are proud and labelled as being British, we as third-fourth generation non-Malays in Malaysia here should be given the due pride and identity as Malaysians in the context of equal rights and opportunities. After all, we were born here and sacrificed our blood and sweat for the development of the country.

I'm not going to bore you further by talking on this creation of Bangsa Malaysia thingy because I think most of us are too lethargic to talk about that anymore. For a bigger picture, you can always visit Jeff Ooi's blog. Cheers.

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