Skin-deep

When I read this in Malaysiakini about a blog posting that allegedly posted insulting remarks about Indians in Malaysia, I decided to go have a look.

I was also able to read the said posting, which has been removed from the blog itself.

The first thoughts that entered my brain were these:

Do I defend her rights for expressing her anger and disappointment over having her cellphone stolen?

Or do I be extra critical for her posting such insulting words and remarks, and over-generalising people according to race?

As a Malaysian Chinese, do I defend her? Or do I be extra critical of her?

I had to stop my thoughts right there, because I was going in the wrong direction altogether. I was thinking of how I’m supposed to react when one of ‘my own kind’ wrote something as insensitive as that.

She has since posted 3 apologies on her blog. The comments that were coming in were diverse to say the least. Some thought that she redeemed herself by apologising, some thought that mere apology wasn’t enough, and some even went as far as calling her all sorts of names and cursing her. I think there was one comment who suggested the authorities to use the ISA.

Some of the comments, I realised, came from Malaysian Chinese, and they identified themselves as such. These were the comments that were critical of her, saying that she should really think before she writes, and that a mere apology that ‘isn’t even sincere’ and ‘made grudgingly’ wasn’t enough.

There were those who identified themselves as Malaysian Indians, and they were the more forgiving ones. After admonishing her for being so unthoughtful, most of these comments ended along the lines of “Just make sure you don’t do it again”.

Of course, there were comments coming from unidentified persons, as it were, and I will make no attempt to group them into any particular group.

But to go back to my earlier thoughts of “To defend or to criticise”, is it just all too easy to fall back to that familiar thread of ‘communal thinking’? Would my line of thought be any different if it were a Malay who posted such remarks, and not a Chinese ‘like my own’?

Do we really focus so much on ‘who said it’ instead of ‘what was being said’? Sadly, I think I’ve proven to myself that it is easy enough to fall back on that trap of ‘communal thinking’.

I had to pull myself back from thinking ‘like a Chinese’ in response to what ‘another Chinese’ said, and almost lost the plot that the important thing is actually ‘what she said’.

It’s not supposed to make a difference if the person who wrote such things is a Chinese or Malay or Indian or Mat Salleh or anyone else.

So, after rearranging my thoughts, and coming from this direction, I am absolutely appalled by what she wrote. Given that she was angry that someone stole her cellphone from right off of her table, right next to her hand, it didn’t give her the privilege of cursing and lumping all Indians into one lump of degrading words and adjectives.

It was A PERSON who stole her cellphone, not the Indian community as a whole. If she wanted to be angry, she should have targetted her anger and disbelief at that ONE PERSON. Some have suggested that this is exactly why there is a phrase that goes “Don’t write anything when angry”. More often than not, we end up writing up ridiculous nonsense that we only live to regret.

It is hurtful when we get lumped into this category of ‘no good people’ simply by virtue of having the same skin colour. If we are to really want a united Malaysia, we should stop grouping ourselves and others according to the colour of our skin. That is literally just skin-deep.

So coming back to this particular issue, what happens now that she has issued an apology? (Her earlier apologies do not count, as they were specifically targetted to ‘educated and good Indians’, and only if they were offended by the said posting. That assumes, wrongly, that ‘uneducated’ Indians, along with people of other ethnicities don’t qualify for an apology)

Hindraf, who were the ones to bring this issue up, have decided that she has done enough, and are ready to accept her apology.

So what about the rest of us?

KTemoc is of the opinion that we should forgive, but not forget. As for myself, I still find it hard to get over the things that she wrote. Very hurtful indeed. But if there is anything to be learnt from this incident, it is that we should all know that generalising people into lumps is just wrong, and would hurt more people than we think.

**Moderator’s note: As of NZ time 10.39pm, 6 Oct 2008, I am closing the comments form for this posting. Nothing personal, I just think it’s time to move on. Thank you for all the comments, they have provided many different views and food for thought.

47 Comments on “Skin-deep”

  1. Drachen says:

    I’m Chinese and I had a Chinese neighbour who drove me crazy. He would come home around 3 in the morning drunk and shout for his wife to open the door. That woke the dogs up and they’d be barking for hours. He would walk his dog along the lane next to our house and litter the place with doggydo. If my mom looked at him the wrong way he would ask if she wanted a fight. Recently his son was almost hacked to pieces for trying collecting “protection” money.

    I moved and now I have Malay and Chinese neighbours. The Chinese wife is a snob and doesn’t have a friend in the entire street. The Malay park their car right at the borderline squeezing our lane tight.

    If we dwell on such things the hurt will eat us up. So we just forget about it and focus on other things. And there are plenty of important things that deserve our attention.

  2. Paul Warren says:

    Michelle, I really wouldn’t sweat over such people. Squirting the poison even before you can see the fangs does not speak well of her. I feel more sorry for her than anything else as she obviously leads her life coated in hate. There obviousy is a lack in the capacity to love and accept. She will forever be guided by suspicion and hate. She needs help alright.

  3. joolee says:

    When I visited this girl’s blog and read her postings, my initial reaction was this self-absorbed child needs a good, tight slap. She is obviously very young, certainly much more immature than her age and most likely enjoyed a very privileged, sheltered upbringing where she was exposed to the most insular, biased middle-class views.

    You’re lucky, Michelle, that your parents brought you up with a sense of justice and to be socially aware. Be angry that there are Malaysians who are as prejudiced as this Sammy but spare her some pity because the person she has hurt the most by her very public tantrum is herself.

  4. Michelle,

    This whole episode has been blown out of proportion with all the unwanted attention given by bloggers.

    Never mind that. She apologized and Hindraf accepted it. Let the matter rest here.

    There are good lessons for each and everyone of us to learn from this episode.

    “Check Our Emotion”. You will find this very Useful in Life.

  5. Sharon says:

    Michelle
    I would say your parents are lucky to have you. Sometimes parents raise their children in the best way they know how. Yet when a child becomes independent and has a mind of his/her own, they might behave/think differently. Good values could be instilled. It still boils down to the individual whether he/she practices these values in life.
    I am glad to see that you are able to think rationally with regard to this matter. Keep up the good work.

  6. sing lau says:

    The title ‘skin deep’ made me thought that the whole fiasco about what the young lady wrote is just a wee molehill turned into a greatest mountain by self-righteous folks.

    Those who expressed such indignation and anger upon the careless woman [many are just as ‘racist’ as this woman, they are ‘wise’ enough not to express it so plainly] should really direct all their anger at the systematic and deliberate RACISM perpetrated by the UMNO, assisted by MCA, MIC and Gorekan [sic].

    All misguided anger and indignation… all SKIN DEEP hot air only.

    Go and fight the real perpetrators of RACISM… go and strike as the root.

    Self-righteous anti-racists should really go and pick the fight with the evil Goliath, the UMNO.

  7. Kelvin says:

    *sorry, please delete the previous comment, some correction made.🙂 Thanks

    I agreed with what you are trying to say. But instead of blaming her for spilling out racist and unjustifiable remarks, why didn’t we consider the part that “what made her thought so”?

    As much as we try to deny, most of the Chinese community is suspicious to our brothers and sisters of other races, particularly and sadly the Indian and Malay community.

    I bet the root of her so called unjustifiable and careless racist and hurtful remarks spawn from the insecurities she felt in the community.

    Let’s be frank, we have heard countless of criminal cases (and sadly) that mostly committed by some of the Malay and Indian.

    I am being very careful with my word choice, I hope this does not offend anyone. After all, the poor lady was a victim, something which I think many of those who commented have forgot.

  8. nocrid says:

    Another lesson to learn is do not be too descriptive when it come to reporting out crimes that was happen to you. Just tell the police a person stole your phone.

  9. omarkhayyam says:

    my take is this, show tat lost gal some directions n let her learn, being a malaysian first we nid to practise wat we preach n not demonise a lost turkey like her just because the system screwed her🙂

    cheers

  10. neutral says:

    There is already enough problem in this country. This person should either stop blogging or do not ever write stupid things in her blog to create problem for others.

  11. omarkhayyam says:

    oh god if i knew u placed moderation alerts i wouldn’t have visited ur website

    bye

  12. Hi

    I am a Malaysian of Indian origin and i am an educationist. i read with interest and trepidation the furore caused by her careless words. Since she has a public blog that is read by the public, perhaps she should take the time to read Omar Khayyam the 11th century Persian poet, who wrote:

    The Moving finger writes
    and having writ moves on …

    he goes on to say that not all your tears nor all your endeavours will undo what you have written.

    If we as bloggers want freedom of expression, then we have the right not to agree with her – till our last breath. But, we will also fight till our last breath for her to maintain her right to say what she wants to say. That is the right we are all fighting for.

    once we get that right, then we must realise that it is a double-edged sword. Do we have the mental maturity to use it wisely? That right can kill our opponent just as easily as it can kill us.

    always use the Rotary 4way test for the things that we say and do:

    Is it the truth?
    Is it fair?
    Will it promote goodwill?
    Will it create better friendship?

    If the answer to any of the above is no, then it would perhaps be wiser to not to say it at all.

    These are my views. It is becuase god gave us eyes that we can see race. That we discriminate. Let the man who wants to make a racial slur, stand up and tell the world that he chose his race, his skin colour, his family before he was born. That choice was not given to any one of us. So let us not discriminate people for something that they did not choose – their race, skin colour, appearance.

    Dear girl, the pen is more hurtful than the sword.

    prasanna

  13. Philo says:

    Hi,
    I am a Malaysian Chinese. The issue here is not merely “skin deep”. It is very easy to say the colour of one’s skin shouldn’t matter, people are all the same, equal, etc. But what if the differences between people of different skin colours derive from their different cultural and socio-economic backgrounds? What if it is true that certain sections of the Indian community in the country,frustrated for lack of educational and employment opportunities have turned to despair and crime in dispropotionate numbers, compared to the other races? Then does it mean we are racist if we were to acknowledge that fact?
    So I think we all, regardless of whatever race we are, need to admit that we are all “fallen humanity”.So we will not get all riled up when someone makes a generalisation concerning our particular race which in reality may have some valid foundations. I am appalled that there are people who have reacted with calls for the ISA to be used on “Sammy”.
    Having said that, I want to be clear that I am in no way defending her original offensive remarks, condemning Indians in general for the crime committed by two individuals. Based on her original logic, which I am glad she has now apologised for, I wonder how we Chinese would view ourselves, the “descendants of the dragon”, as some of us so often proudly tout, now that some of our kinsmen in China have added melamine to infant formula all for the sake of making more money?
    The Malays should not feel nor fear that the Chinese have been singling them out for discrimination and marginalisation in the economic sphere in Malaysia, your race has nothing to do with it; we are merely behaving as we have been conditioned, i.e. make as much money any which way we can. In China, our counterparts have carried that tendency to the extreme, even poisoning babies of our own race. I wonder how the Chinese feel when I say that. Is it true? I can only leave each one to honestly answer that question in her heart of hearts.
    So in the final analysis, relax a little, take life with a large pinch of salt; we all have our own faults and failings, either as individuals or as a particular race and culture. Don’t judge anyone on the basis of his race, we are all damaged goods but still endowed by the Almighty with human dignity that cuts accross all divides. If we can do that, superficial things like skin colour or even substaintive factors like racial traits will not stand between us in our common journey towards salvation and personal fulfilment.
    Cheers!

  14. Rick says:

    Hi Michelle,

    Let me put it this way. It is no use blaming anybody. This has a more psychological ramifications rather then superfluous way we see race and religion.

    People increase their self esteem by putting the others done or typecasting a group of people or class. It is they against us. Even Sammy may not be aware how her subconscious filters things to suit herself or pamper her self esteem. Even if she realizes later and apologizes, this will not solve the underlying problem. It will be superficial. It will just to please everybody.

    It is not about Chinese or Indian or Malay. It is about the self esteem. Yes politicians have used this as a effective tool in Malaysia, at least until now.

    But this self esteem is based on false premises. It is not about love, it is about hatred. It is about typecasting.

    There has to be complete change in our perceptions of how we see things. It is about treating every human as a human first and an equal. It is about seeing why a particular individual is doing bad because of his lack of knowledge or his way of understanding things. Why a person becomes a thief or a drunkard in the first place.

    All of us when we were born are innocent, cute and the most lovable people in the world. It is while we are growing up – the type of beliefs we adapt or acquire, results in what we become. It is also about opportunities one gets in life and the fallen hopes and unfulfilled dreams that make us what we are today. Many people of the same type, then automatically they are type-casted as a group.

    I feel the famous saying “Do unto others what you expect the others do unto you” has more relevance in this society.

    Thanks
    Rick

  15. WY says:

    Kelvin said
    “Let’s be frank, we have heard countless of criminal cases (and sadly) that mostly committed by some of the Malay and Indian.”

    Another racist statement. Now kids, can someone tell me why the above statement is another racist statement?… I would really like to see the complete dataset he had gathered or heard to come to such conclusions.

    Kelvin also said:
    “After all, the poor lady was a victim, something which I think many of those who commented have forgot.”

    Sure, that means because I was the victim, I can be judge, jury and executioner. Don’t even ponder at the thought that maybe the criminal was a desperate father who had no choice but to steal in order to buy milk for his newborn. It’s not justice, but I’d like to think that Malaysians, can be a little bit more forgiving especially if there’s a small chance that the thought above is true, instead of choosing to lash out at the entire race, whether victim or not.

    If I was your equally racist advocate, and I can be IF I wanted to, perhaps I might have come out with an alternative equally racist explanation behind Sammy’s insecurities in the community. But I have relatives, friends, and colleagues of all races, that I care about too much. “Marahkan nyamuk, kelambu dibakar”

  16. Jarod says:

    I am sad for her remark. She need more exposure. She is just a young brat. Forget about her. There are so many youths out there who may be just the same as her.

  17. sing lau says:

    I have heard this general [sic] characterization about school children endless times… .
    Now, please I am only repeating what I have heard often. I don’t know HOW MUCH truth there is:

    Orang Cina PENJUDI
    Orang Melayu BONTENG
    Orang India PANJANG TANGAN.

    I am a Chinese…
    I just listen and I do believe the bit about the Chinese… GREED which expresses itself in gambling is indeed something clearly seen among the Chinese…
    Go to Magnum or 4-Digit outlets on weekend afternoons and see for yourself… many flock to such gambling dens as like camels flocking to watering holes!

    If folks have the ability to do some self-reflection, there may be some good out of all these ‘racist’ follies spewed out in the moment of exasperation.

  18. matt says:

    Guys there those who say worse things don’t make a mountain out of a mole hill.This article was a mistake on her part but since she apologized move along, next topic please

  19. miwaki says:

    There are so many people carrying cellphones but it was hers which was snatched,why ah ?

  20. The Good Guy says:

    Philo said,

    “What if it is true that certain sections of the Indian community in the country,frustrated for lack of educational and employment opportunities have turned to despair and crime in dispropotionate numbers, compared to the other races? Then does it mean we are racist if we were to acknowledge that fact?”

    Does that justify the fact that 99.9% of the members of THE PKM are chinese and therefore all chinese are communist? Dude obviously every race has rotten apples,how they got to that level could be because of many reasons. If we wanna admit that the indian community has criminals in disproportionate numbers,why single that race out lets admits every race has the same amount cause obviously theres no such statistics to back up your claims,its just generalization.

    What Sammy did,was not a spur of the moment thing,she even dared the Indians to sue her for remarks,isnt that asking for trouble is bad enough you demonize the community then you dare and taunt them to steep to your level and engage you,such ignorance.

    Michelle,
    I agree with you,eventhough we can just take her apology and all that her,the words and her views is really hurting and will certainly linger in our minds. I’m sad to the fact that 51 years of nation building,we are still segregated as ever.

  21. Frus says:

    Childish Idiots.
    Both Sammy and Hindraf.

  22. Paul Warren says:

    For those who think crime means Indians quite naturally, and trying to minimise the impact of that mentality, should think about something else too….When one says “mummy”, or “mamasan”, who do you see in your mind’s eye? So you see, racism works both ways and neither is complimentary, however true these prejudices might be. It is best not to go there.

    There is just no place for any kind of racism. I know that because I have seen both the beauty as well as the scum in all races. We are all equally blessed with both.

  23. Ken says:

    I lost my handphone in sardine packed LRT. I do not blame on race.

    I blame on:
    1. Increase in petrol price force lots people into tightcorners.
    2. Increase in crime.

    Whoever it was who stole my phone, hope he got what he needs and able to cover for his meals.

  24. Antares says:

    So easy to control humans… because a vast majority are technically worker robots fleshed out in delectable hydrocarbon-protein suits. Perhaps the shock of having her blog in the spotlight for the worst possible reasons will shake Sammy awake and initiate a period of conscious derobotization🙂

  25. Philo says:

    Hi Good Guy,
    I hope you have not misunderstood the thrust of my commentary, I did not intend, in any way, to disparage Indians. I just wanted to drive home the point that to achieve real understanding and harmony, we all need to be humble, which in turn means being brutally honest; which is different from paying lip service to “equality” without understanding that races are different from each other. In many instances, unfortunately, certain negative traits are prevalent among certain races and bigots sieze on this to stereotype. Since I do not wish to offend anyone of another race by specifying negative traits of other races and, being Chinese myself, I will use your own rhetorical example, were all Chinese communists? Obviously not. But a lot of the communist terrorists were Chinese. The important thing is, why?
    See? We need to understand the underlying causes, only then will we be empowered to address and put right whatever is broken within any community or group of people. We cannot afford to say “everyone is equal, rah rah, Muhibbah” and sweep everything under the carpet; that is truly only a skin-deep illusion of a solution, like the “Malaysia, Truly Asia” advertisements we see on CNN. So when many Chinese are money-mad, many Indian youths are desperate and many Malays feel threatened and marginalised, what do we need to do? It is not a matter of skin colour any longer, it is a matter of heart and mind. So if there are problems with some Indian youths turning to gangsterism, the government should deal with it, if many Chinese gangs are involved with pirating movies, illegal money lending, illegal gambling rackets and prostitution, please, the government should deal with it, and if the Malays lack business acumen, then the government should correct it. But at no time should we judge individual persons as: Indians are criminals, Chinese are without conscience and Malays are clueless in business. But do we have such a government in power today?
    If we can break free of our personal prejuidices when we interact amongst one another on a daily basis and give each person her due, then only will we be free to be Bangsa Malaysia. That was my point, I hope you can agree.
    On a lighter note, two of my best friends in school and even now, are Indians. I used to hang out at their homes and their mothers used to dot on me. I blame them for my lifelong addiction to papadam and south Indian cuisine, especially “pallipu curry”.
    I have dated a girl of Indian-Chinese parentage, another who was Javanese (in Jakarta, no less) and a few Chinese girls and let me confirm; they all tasted equally sweet when kissed. Racism and bigotry be damnned!!!
    We were all created different, there must be a divine reason; let’s enjoy our diversity. Peace.

  26. AH Ha ha says:

    Her attitude only shows the kind of upbringing she had. Her parents, her peers in school, her school teachers, and workmates are all to be blamed too. I am sure there are many people like her out there.

  27. AH Ha ha says:

    Another racist here by the name of Kelvin! Why is the Chinese community so suspicious of Malays and Indians??? Chinese don’t commit any crimes, is it? Which part of the world have you been all this while, Kelvin? Grow up!

  28. blueduckcopy says:

    I think you need to try to determine if the words came from ignorance of racial issues, or from hatred. Hateful remarks are not the same as ones said in ignorance.

  29. Andy says:

    Simple Advice and a Word to the Wise:

    Victim thinking is not healthy.

    Drop the race/caste stigma.

    Realize that ignorance, bias, and prejudice is universal and unfortunately is a part of our frail human existence, so let it go.

    Try spending as much time and energy spreading light, focusing upon the positive aspects of life.

    The light in your eyes will reflect in the eyes of others.

    Andy

  30. Andy says:

    You may choose to delete this post as well.

    Sorry to have stumbled into your personal world of misery…..I arrived accidentally, thinking originally it was a page featuring tattoo art, etc.

    Andy

  31. Andy says:

    How I found your page is true, however, it was my assumption that you deleted my earlier post. I now realize it is only in cue for moderation. Ce la vie and good luck😉

    Andy

  32. Andy says:

    If you post all my comments, you will have both my personal and public apologies.

    Andy

  33. Ronson says:

    Guess What? She has the right to be racist. It is her personal right to be racist and also her right to express it in her blog.

    Additionally, she is a nobody unlike Ahmad Ismail who is a politician and was an UMNO Division Head, who gave a public speech under the banner of UMNO & BN. A politician holds sway over many people and as such his racist comments deserves public condemnation.
    She too deserves condemnation but filing a police report and asking for action to be taken is just extreme and stupid.

    This matter is like the Namewee issue all over again where a nobody is villify for political gain.

    Finally, see this.

  34. readlistenspeakwrite says:

    Amaxing. Great post and great comments. I appreciated reading them very much. Keep blogging. All the best,🙂

  35. Patricia says:

    Hi dear,

    Wow! So many people with so many valid responses!

    As you already know, I am Malaysian Indian – so one of my kind did the deed. If he had stolen my phone, know what I’d have said?

    “That bloody indian fler stole my phone!” Or something ruder, I cannot print here😉

    We may not like to accept this but that is how things stand here: we define everyone around us by race! Only then do we see other ‘qualities’ – cos race alone does not make us who we are.

    I don’t think even Haris would say: “That bloody anak bangs Malaysia stole my phone!” Hahahah!

    But levity aside: She was just venting. In her own blog. And some poor soul happened upon it, and sent it to Malaysiakini and then so on and so forth. And it became a big issue. Which it is not.

    And now she is a ‘famous blogger’. Sigh. YOU should be a famous blogger: for the quality and depth of your posts. Not her, for heaven’s sake.

    But this is where we are in Malaysia today: race is the big ugly monster that stands in front of us, and is turning us all into monsters, too. Some of us are trying to be anak bangsa Malaysia. Others are clinging desperately to their origins. Yet others don’t give a crap either way.

    I think we should stop denying its very valid place in our society. Race matters. But more important is that we are Malaysians. That should matter more. But we don’t feel it yet, and so any little slur hurts and is blown up out of all proportion.

    But it makes for a very healthy debate, no? And all academic in the final analysis. We’re just helping ‘them’ divide and rule, babe!

    Cheers,

    Pat

  36. The Good Guy says:

    Philo,

    You speak my mind friend, Pat,well not really the case,it boils down to the individuals,heck i have had my handphone stolen by indians,malays and also indonesians,but that doesnt warrant me to justify by demonizing the whole community and taunt them to sue me for it,thats just plain stupidity. Freedom of Expression is a good thing but you have to be responsible in how you articulate your views just because you have it you cant flaunt it at your whims,its a responsibility.

    Blogging among other expression media is an avenue for people to view who you are and read what you have to say,you cant bar people from coming to your blog and reading your piece its like asking the public not to use public amenities. All bloggers shouldnt justify racism through freedom of expression,blogging is a responsibility its not a place to wash your dirty laundry and for people to see that side of you,its very hard for people to forgive a racist,thats the biggest bummer of it all.

    Cheers,
    TGG

  37. Rick says:

    If this if of typecasting an Indian Community. There are 1.2 billion Indians. More then the population of Europe or the Americas..

    There will be definitely good and bad among them. Depends on how you see it.

    Given below are some facts of their contribution. The reason for giving these facts is to at least reduce the typecasting of any group, religion or nationality and look at the world in a more wider lenses.

    Q. Who is the creator of Pentium chip (needs no introduction as 90% of the today’s computers run on it)?
    A. Vinod Dahm
    Q. Who is the founder and creator of Hotmail (Hotmail is world’s No.1 web based email program)?
    A. Sabeer Bhatia
    Q. We Indians are the wealthiest among all ethnic groups in America, even faring better than the whites and the natives.
    There are 3.22 millions of Indians in USA (1.5% of population). YET,
    *38% of doctors in USA are Indians.
    * 12% scientists in USA are Indians.
    * 36% of NASA scientists are Indians.
    * 34% of Microsoft employees are Indians.
    * 28% of IBM employees are Indians.
    * 17% of INTEL scientists are Indians.
    * 13% of XEROX employees are! Indians.
    Some of the following facts may be known to you. These facts were recently published in a German magazine, which deals with WORLD HISTORY FACTS ABOUT INDIA.
    1. India never invaded any country in her last 1000 years of history.
    2. India invented the Number system. Zero was invented by Aryabhatta.
    3. The world’s first University was established in Takshila in 700BC. More than 10,500 students from all over the world studied more than 60 subjects. The University of Nalanda built in the 4 th century BC was one of the greatest achievements of ancient India in the field of education.
    4. According to the Forbes magazine, Sanskrit is the most suitable language for computer software.
    5. Ayurveda is the earliest school of medicine known to humans.
    6. Although western media portray modern images of India as poverty stricken and underdeveloped through political corruption, India was once the richest empire on earth.
    7. The art of navigation was born in the river Sindh 5000 years ago. The very word “Navigation” is derived from the Sanskrit word NAVGATIH.
    8. The value of pi was first calculated by Budhayana, and he explained the concept of what is now known as the Pythagorean Theorem. British scholars have last year (1999) officially published that Budhayan’s works dates to the 6 th Century which is long before the European mathematicians.
    9. Algebra, trigonometry and calculus came from India . Quadratic equations were by Sridharacharya in the 11 th Century; the largest numbers the Greeks and the Romans used were 106 whereas Indians used numbers as big as 10 53.
    10. According to the Gemological Institute of America, up until 1896, India was the only source of diamonds to the world.
    11. USA based IEEE has proved what has been a century-old suspicion amongst academics that the pioneer of wireless communication was Professor Jagdeesh Bose and not Marconi.
    12. The earliest reservoir and dam for irrigation was built in Saurashtra.
    13.Chess was invented in India .
    14. Sushruta is the father of surgery. 2600 years ago he and health scientists of his time conducted surgeries like cesareans, cataract, fractures and urinary stones. Usage of anaesthesia was well known in ancient India .
    15. When many cultures in the world were only nomadic forest dwellers over
    5000 years ago, Indians established Harappan culture in Sindhu Valley (Indus Valley Civilization).
    16. The place value system, the decimal system was developed in India in 100 BC.
    Quotes about India .
    We owe a lot to the Indians, who taught us how to count, without which no worthwhile scientific discovery could have been made.
    Albert Einstein

    India is the cradle of the human race, the birthplace of human speech, the mother of history, the grandmother of legend and the great grand mother of tradition.
    Mark Twain

    If there is one place on the face of earth where all dreams of living men have found a home from the very earliest days when man began the dream of existence, it is India .
    French scholar Romain Rolland

    Rick

  38. bronco says:

    People tend to generalize that our brother Indian (for this case) are the trouble makers……. there is a reason. Most cases are related to one race for a specific reason.

    For this case, petty theft – if one care tolook at the statistic, it is normally related to the POOR. and it happened that the POOR are the Indians. Those who generalize it should look beyond the race and find out the root cause. Thinks like this can only be solved by proper education and lift the living standard of the poor. When your pocket is full or enough food on the table, no one will risk there freedom to steal the a-few-hundred ringgit cell phone.

    So go for the root cause and solve it….let Sammy go as she only look at the problem superficially.

  39. Hi Michelle,

    Thanks for visiting my site this morning re the 51 ideas for a better Malaysia. I am reciprocating your visit (although I have been here many times) and this is the first time I am leaving a comment. Pleased to meet you😉.

    Much has been said by you and many bloggers so I will state other observations. Personally, I was enraged when I visited her blog and read her so-called apologies.

    Now if we were to look at all that in totality, I can draw a few conclusions.

    1. Basically, she is very irresponsible and attempts to hide her setback by making lame excuses and even lamer apologies filled with fallacious thinking.

    a. As one working in the advertising industry, she is lying through her teeth because she said that words have no tone or emotion. I beg to differ. She works with words and twiddles with ways to elicit emotions throught the medium of writing. Thus, she knows very well the power of the pen. So her thesis statement is totally invalid!

    b. She claims that she was ranting. Great. Rant all the way but not to the extent of making such derogatory remarks which smack of tomfoolery with words. What she did reveals her indifference to collective responsibility to maintain peace and harmony.

    I analyzed her posts before she restricted it to invited readers and it is obvious that it was a free for all. Did you all see her responses to those who criticized her? She had no respect whatsoever for homo sapiens and she continued her onslaught there defending her so-called right to vent and rant!!!! And only bowed in feeble humility and pseudo repentance when she felt the heat of the situation and the possibility of her being taken to task by the authorities.

    c. Her excuse of wearing sarees to her Indian friend’s birthday party is pathetic to say the least. The very fact that she has friends from the Indian community and YET could make such statements reveals the fact that not only does she show no regard for fellow Malaysians (regardless of ethnic origin), she is also insensitive to the feelings of her friends!!! What sort of person is that? If one is upset, there are other ways of unleashing our seething anger instead of hammering our anger on the keyboard for all to see.

    d. As a graduate, she ought to have developed a certain level of maturity in her thinking skills. Her flawed analytical processes are testament of the failure of local education institutions ( I am quite sure she is a graduate from a local institution)to impart knowledge and skills to equip them for life in the real world. Instead, we have a dysfunctional girl who is the product of a dysfunctional socialization process that resulted in her warped perception of the human race.

    You are right to point out the fact that the issue is not whether it is a Chinese insulting Indians. This should not happen at all. PERIOD. What we see is a perpetuation of the colonialistic divide and rule policy which is so deeply embedded in the psyche of many that once the flame of slurs is ignited, the bonfire of rage spreads.

    If she had been sincere and repentant with a conscience, the minute someone gave her a retort for her remarks, she should have closed her blog, or at least apologized immediately. If she wanted to continue blogging and had any sense of self-respect, she should have removed her photo from her blog. As it stands, tens of thousands of Malaysians know her face and I cannot fathom how she can walk the face of this country with her head in the air unless she has deep and genuine repentance in her heart. I sincerely hope by now, she realizes the folly of her ways and words.

    I left three comments in her post and none were published.

    Her racial stereotyping is sadly the product of the defective agents of socialization.

    Sorry to ramble.

    I truly hope that this incident is an eye-opener to all of us to be more careful and sensitive about what we write, think and say.

    God bless you and all out there.

  40. Drachen says:

    The worst racial incident I’ve ever experienced is when a bunch of screaming skin-heads chased me down the street in Australia. It was traumatic, to say the least. What I’ve encountered in Malaysia is mild in comparison.

  41. Brandon says:

    I hope my comments will be the last one. True, the blogger has made some unkind remarks. We have given our various responses, some kind, some equally unkind. She has apologized, sincerely or not doesn’t matter. The fact is, SHE HAS APOLOGIZED. We should now put this behind us and move on. Whether we’ll remember her in a good way or a bad way doesn’t matter. We must move on. I have.

  42. debbie says:

    If an Indian steals my phone, I may tell others close to me that an Indian guy stole my phone.
    That’s it.

    To write about it and condemn the whole Indian community in a blog for the whole world to read is just plain stupid.

    Sammy has shown us how stupid she is.

    There are many more like her.

  43. Philo says:

    Hi, in the spirit of Brandon’s comments, that we should move on; I just felt that I should relate the following:
    One day, when my Indian best friend and I were browising around in a department store, he suddenly stopped and picked up a shirt, black with large beige motiffs and he said “this will look good on you”. Before I could object, he had told the sales girl to “wrap it up”. So I ended up with a dark shirt that really made me look good. I would never have bought the shirt on my own, it was too expensive for me and yet a brother felt I should wear it and paid his own money for it. And he is an Indian. How not to feel anything but respect, appreciation and love for such a friend?
    The moral is: never judge a person by his/her race, if you do, you are missing out sooooo much on life.

  44. renso says:

    TSK TSK

    C’on, she’s a nobody…screwed her, let her be.

    For others, GET OVER IT..petty matter…tsk tsk tsk

  45. JNathan says:

    BLOG=WebLog..It’s a journal for god’s sake. Let her write what she wants, she’s just expressing her thoughts at that moment. No body forced us to view that blog. If we are to truly progress, and harp on freedom of speech etc., then its time to be mature enough to realise that we eventually might hear or read things that offend us, but it is that persons right to express themselves.

    And for your info, I’m Indian.

    And also to to Hindraf, stick with national issues..not seeking cheap publicity.

  46. nash says:

    A few facts about Sammy.

    1. Shes a graduate of Taylors College,in the USM Degree of Persuasive Communication aka a mass communication undergrad.

    2. 70% of the mass comm lecturers in Taylor’s College are indians (see the irony here?)

    3. She just graduated this year.

    Firstly i like to praise those who have commented about the whole Sammy fiasco in this blog,many were spot on target while the others just defended her and supported her stereotypes and went along with how its just and she shouldn’t be punished.

    I’m a fellow mass commer and i feel disgusted by her especially when shes from my college. We mass commers are taught on how to avoid stereotypes and how to communicate with the public through media so that our message would be clear cut. She is lying when she says that words has no tone nor sincerity,i believe she was taught social semiotics which basically means the construction of meaning be it through words or objects.

    Plus,shes 22 years old and has just graduated from mass communication,how could someone of that background insinuate such hatred and racism through her blog? We are taught to avoid stereotypes or making any,dont tell me she forgot what the lecturers were saying especially when she just graduated thats bullcrap.

    Her apologies arent sincere,try to find the first two apologies,you can see that she defends her statements and dont show any sign of regret and alleged that educated Indians need not worry about what she wrote as it only condemns indians who are not educated. What suddenly indians are two separate groups? Its not a spur of the moment thing,look at her counter arguments in her commentary it was a free for all,she kept defending her racist remarks. She even said that shes a sometimes racist kinda person,its either you are racist or you are not theres no such thing called temporary racism that comes and goes.

    In her last apology which she made after coming under fire and getting wide publicity, she said that she wears saree to her friends birthday and that means shes not a racist,a dress is still a dress,wearing it doesnt mean you something that you are not,i can wear western clothes that doesnt mean i accept all their values neither does it mean i tolerate their mindset.

    I believe we can all come to a consensus that a person of her stature should face the music? You have to accept responsibility for your actions,if you are punished for it,just accept it hopefully you turn out a better person. If we kept talking about how her parents feel then we should let all the prisoners let lose cause their family feel the same way right?

    Cheers,
    nash

  47. The Good Guy says:

    Michelle,

    The actual article and apology,something for you and the rest to scrutinize.
    _________________
    (deleted)

    Good Guy, I’m sorry, but I hope you don’t mind me deleting the comment. I did not include the link to Sammy’s blog because I think that although this is a subject worth discussing, it’s not really conducive to over-scrutinise her blog posting. This is also the reason why I decided to delete your reproduction of the said postings.

    For those who did get the chance to read her postings, they probably have the gist of it etched in their minds, as it is in mine. For those who didn’t, it might be a good thing to just let go.

    This may or may not be a small matter, depending on what viewpoint you’re looking at it from. But perhaps it’s time to move on?

    I hope you don’t take this personally, as I really appreciate your comments here.