I Am Malaysian

I’ve just read a letter someone sent to Lim Kit Siang, which he posted on his blog. I have to say, the letter is a very strong and emotional one. The writer must have very strong convictions and beliefs, that is what I got from reading that letter he sent to Lim Kit Siang. The letter can be read HERE.

I guess in a way, reading the letter triggered some sort of emotion/reaction in myself. I know I haven’t been blogging about the current state of affairs in Malaysia as I used to, and I admit to feeling quite sick and tired of the endless politicking and what feel like nonsensical arguments.

I can fully appreciate where the writer of that letter was coming from. The points raised about preferential treatment by race, of a country not appreciative of its own talents, I only know too well.

But while I can truly get all that, I simply cannot put into my head (perhaps I’m thick-skulled) that that is all there is to a nation. The politics is absurd, the politicians just disgraceful. But surely there is more to a country than politics and the like.

The writer wrote in to say thanks to Lim Kit Siang, and to announce that the writer is leaving the country. Perhaps there is merit for the writer to decide to do so. Perhaps it is indeed better for the writer to choose what he/she identifies as a brighter future.

I hold no ill-feelings for this writer. To each their own.

As for me, I’m making preparations to go home.

To me, Malaysia is not just about the corruption that seems to have grown roots in our society. It’s not just about the discrimination that works in all directions, at all levels possible. It’s not just about the politics and the politicking and the fighting to see who gets which state.

True. Patriotism is not about singing the national anthem and flying the national flag. And yes, patriotism is about feeling like a part of the nation. Being patriotic is also about wanting to do something for the country.

I’m no Lim Kit Siang. Or Najib Razak. Heck, I’m not even going to make a good Ng Yen Yen PA. What I’m trying to say is, I cannot do very much. What I can do, possibly will not create even the slightest ripple, let alone any political tsunami.

But I want to do something for Malaysia. For its people. For my people.

I want to be nice to my Malaysian neighbours. I want to let them know that they’re welcome to my house at any time, and I don’t care if they don’t speak Cantonese. I want to go out for lunches and dinners with my Malaysian colleagues, have some chill-out time after a long day’s work, and I don’t care if they’re wearing a sari or a baju kurung, or just pants and a shirt.

I want to get to know the artsy people in Kuala Lumpur. I want to visit their galleries, attend their book launches, listen to them read from their books. I want to support Malaysian bands, buy their CDs, follow their growth.

I want to visit orphanages and old folk’s homes to volunteer my time. I want to visit the homes of indigenous people, learn their way of life, and tell it to my city friends. I want to take photos of every place in Malaysia that I visit, and show the beauties to my overseas friends.

I want to do something, anything, so that at least one other fellow Malaysian will feel better about his/her country.

It’s not very much that I want to do. Sure, it’d be great if I could change the government, its policies and everything else I feel is wrong. But if I can’t do all the big things, at least let me do the little things. Because I know the little things count.

I say I am Malaysian. And I am Malaysian because I decide I want to participate in my country.


4 Comments on “I Am Malaysian”

  1. jarod says:

    Yoh… Good one.And when ya coming home? Do drop us a hint….

    Tanah tumpahnya darah kita, baliklah….

  2. doc says:

    spoken like a true patriot (& i meant well!). if i were in politics or NGO, i’d be waiting at the arrival hall on your return to recruit you.

  3. tunnusantara says:

    Hello Michelle,

    Salam Merdeka. Syabas for your article!

    Let me try to put things in perspective, with respect to the letter to Kit Siang.

    1. why would the chinese nowadays, suddenly RISE & question the constitution (since “weak” Badawi’s era). For all these while, they’ve agreed to it. Agreed to respect it, uphold it; for without that, no Jus Soli Citizenships will be given!
    (FREE Citizenships without having to prove loyalty, knowing the language, the traditions, etc. ie. without having to show acceptance/conviction to all the things that come with this country! NO Tests NO Interviews & YEARS of waiting!! & to Buruh2 Kasar & Kuli2 at that! IE. not even ‘professionals’ which any country Could consider)!…

    2. IF the chinese were to migrate to any country at all, they’d immediately accept the new country, try as hard as possible to Show & Prove that they’re just like one of them, try to talk like them with slang & all, and Simply Accept all that come with that country – their constitution, their schooling system, etc., etc..

    3. they WILLINGLY do all those Just To get their Citizenships or even just “PR”, approved. They had to EARN their citizenship or even just PR! — so, THEY respect!
    While HERE, IN MALAYSIA, they’ve ALREADY got their “citizenships” & for FREE!, without having to Show & Prove themselves to this country. They CONTINUE (generation after generation) taking this country for GRANTED — Thus, even up to “Forgetting” (buat2 lupa saja!) their agreement to Obey the Constitution where they NOW ‘simply’ QUESTION (?)!

    4. Since it was MCA that had agreed to respect the Constitution, the ultra-racist DAP took it at its stride as if they are (albeit “suddenly” – because they didn’t even exist yet then!) the ‘champion’ for the Chinese community!… Simply “USING” it (NO RESPECT for THE Constitution & “suddenly” want/DEMAND chinese this chinese that!) as A WAY TO GET ‘VOTES’!!
    — that is why it is Justified for the Malays, ie.pribumis/natives of this land to tell THEM RACIST to go back to China if they want to live like their grandfathers/mothers previous LAND in China.

    5. As a Malaysian, I see them as VERY IRRESPONSIBLE & DISHONEST “humans” (nothing to do with race here!!). &, what more as 1 of the ‘Political’ parties in Malaysia, that simply & OUTRIGHTLY IGNORE The Constitution & have the chic to DEMAND Clearly Racist things (simple example, Sekolah “JENIS Cina”!).

    6. This is understandable because they’re part of leekuanyew’s pap which was the cause for HONEST MALAYSIANS MPs Voted 126-0 in Parliament, for the Expulsion of Kiasu-s’pore.
    FYI, Racial RIOTS broke out in s’pore in 1964 because RACIST-pap refused to respect The Constitution which is basically the successful formula for a peaceful & harmony Malaya, where All TRUE RAKYATS then, have high respect for one another (NOT the Clear & PROVEN Hypocrites Nowadays!) — but that was Only Up UNTIL s’pore came back in into Malaysia in 1963!…

    7. I see pap’s dap as the MAIN CAUSE OF RIFT Amongst Malaysians which is SIMPLY What that old KIASU leekuanyew wanted since 1963 – to DENY ANYTHING & EVERYTHING Malay.
    Their “strategies” & ‘issues’ brought up are EXACTLY THE SAME!

    8. I hope you have a better picture.
    Yes, back to point #1 above, I find it ILLOGICAL that the government all these years don’t know how to tackle RACIST dap who want Malaysians to “forget about the FREE JUS SOLI CITIZENSHIPS” bit!
    Or, they too don’t want us Malaysians to unite? – just continue bickering AS some Political Selling Points?? (* maybe”NWO” at its BEST. Right here in humble, little Malaysia?!?).

    Salam Muhibbah.

    p/s: If 1Malaysia, why not 1SCHOOL??? Segregate ‘them’ (ie. us Malaysians) from young?? SIGH!

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