Malaysia’s unity try, Part II

In response to Sani’s comment on my Malaysia’s unity try, Part I


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1. When SA won the world cup for rugby, they only had 1 black player on the team, who in fact, didn’t even play. Subs bench all the way. The blacks hated the SA rugby team, and even wanted to rename it from the “Springboks” to some native african name. Mandela cut that attempt out, because he knew that if the whites lost the Springboks, SA would lose the whites. What Mandela did do though, very smartly, was to get the white Springbok team to adopt the black African song of freedom as their team anthem. A stroke of genius — he managed to have his cake and eat it too.

The fact that the team didn’t have the “racial composition” of SA, in the end, didn’t make a difference to what the team did for the nation. I’m not sure what the magic formula was, but it worked. If i had to guess, i think it was because Mandela was smart enough to use the team as a fulcrum to get people to see what was wrong with themselves first, only then they would be able to start building the bridges between the races.

The problem with Malaysia is that none of the races think there is anything wrong with themselves, and everything wrong with the others. The Malaysia think the Chinese are money hogging pork-eating scumbuckets and the Chinese think the Malays are stupid resource monopolizing dullards. God only knows what they both think about the Indians and vice versa.

2. The newspapers and political leaders of SA were no different, it’s naive to think that things were hunky dory in that respect. But somehow, it didn’t make a difference, and reforms were pushed through nonetheless. I think its because Mandela was not only the leader of the nation, but he had the moral authority to do the things that needed to be done. Who do we have today in Malaysia who we can say mirrors Mandela. That’s where the real problem may ultimately lie — none of our leaders have real, REAL, moral authority (and don’t make me laugh by saying Anwar Ibrahim, pls.)


One thought on “Malaysia’s unity try, Part II

  1. I’m reposting this comments because I wanna engage you or at least your thought process on the issue of racial unity in Malaysia, sorry for double post:
    Come on Aiz both of us know that very few politicians run for office for altruistic reasons. Even in the West, it is always doubtful whether a policy is pursued for the good of the country or is with the polls in mind and to get support from certain constituencies. This is even more difficult in Malaysia because our politicians don’t contest over policies and philosophies, but on narrow issues such as race and religion.
    Given this focus, of course there is a large vacuum for politicians to run on on multi racial/multi ethnic grounds. Personally I don’t care how much Anwar truly believes in this platform as long as he a) pursue it seriously and b) can keep the extremist within PR in check (remember Zulkifli Nordin), then we have hope to see these policies of racial unity materialize. The true test is whether Anwar is willing to take political hits (and lose votes) for pursuing this multi-ethnic/racial platform and the answer is a big yes…he has been called everything by government MPs and extremist groups like Perkasa from ‘prngkhianat bangsa/agama’ to conspiring with the Americans and the Jews and yet he remains steadfast with his approach.
    On your second point, again I’m surprised why you would even think that PKR is running for altruistic reasons. Of course PKR like all political parties is a vehicle to install Anwar into power. What’s wrong with that? That’s what politics is all about.
    The bit about him wanting to be surrounded by people he can trust is a bit more debatable. I’m assuming you are referring to issues like Azmin vs Zaid here…how much influence did Anwar have in this process? Any proof even from Zaid? All I hear are rhetorics. Now I’m not a fan of Azmin and would have preferred Zaid before he went on a one man demolition job, but ask the grassroots of PKR and you will see that a sizable number do support Azmin. He has been there for the long haul and whatever he has done, some people like him and thus voted him in.
    To sum up, I don’t for one bit think that Anwar can bring unity because he is a force of good, the knight in the shining armor that will rid of racist based policies. I believe in him (again RELATIVELY) based on political realities that he runs on a multi-ethnic platform and have so far stayed the course.


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