Thursday, December 4, 2014

Who are Chinese Malaysians really? – T.K.Chua

Chinese Malaysians are now being characterised in many ways. We are both ugly capitalists and communists. We are money worshippers and evangelical Christians. We are heartless people but at the same time we are accused of indulging in too much social and political activity.

We are chauvinistic Chinese school supporters. We have no respect for other races and religions. We are depraved people indulging in immoral and illegal business activities. We are unpatriotic and unwilling to get involved in public service. In a nut shell, we are trouble, trouble and trouble.

I think the accusers are very confused and stupid people. They do not know how to look at the Chinese as a community and as an individual. They do not know the difference between exceptions and generalisations. But I guess they intentionally stereotype the Chinese to create hatred and to galvanise support for their own political survival.

If some Chinese are selfish, immoral, heartless, ugly capitalists, communists, chauvinistic, evangelical, and greedy, I too can find people from other races and religions having the same attributes.

The accusers must make up their minds. How could the Chinese be capitalists and communists at the same time? How could the Chinese be evangelical Christians while at the same time indulge in illegal and immoral activities?

How could the Chinese be accused of proselytising to the Muslims when most of them are money lovers? How could the Chinese be accused of being chauvinistic supporters of Chinese schools when Mandarin has continued to gain importance? The reality is, we need Chinese language to trade and do business with China but China does not need English or Malay to trade with us.

I was thinking – how could all these accusations heaped on the Chinese help Malaysia solve its problems of corruption, cronyism, poor governance and incompetency? How could the Chinese, being evangelical Christians, make corruption worse in this country?

How could the Chinese schools make the competitive position of this country worse when the ability to read and write Chinese could only increase our economic value, not reduce it? How can Chinese participation in social and political activities make corruption and poor governance in this country worse when the whole civil service and important positions in Cabinet are already held by the Malays?

The Chinese are accused of running immoral and illegal business activities, but who are the people who are suppose to regulate, control and enforce these activities? We see illegal foreign workers everywhere, but who have allowed them in and condoned them in total oblivion.

The Chinese have been accused of being unpatriotic. But what is patriotism? Must one serve the armed forces, the police and the civil service to be patriotic? What if corrupted officials bought substandard arms which endangered the armed forces personnel? What if corrupted police allow illegal activities to thrive?

What if the civil service squandered the allocations meant for the targeted groups? On the other hand, if citizens work diligently, are self-reliant, take care of their families, educate their children, and pay taxes, are they not patriotic? What about citizens who uphold the ethics of their professions, do not shortchange their customers and are civic minded, are they not patriotic too?

If patriotism is just waving flags and reciting pledges, that would have been an easy thing to do. How true when Samuel Johnson said, “patriotism is the last refuge of a scoundrel” centuries ago.

I think the majority of the Chinese Malaysians would have detested politics if the “governing system” is working fine. Please don’t use exceptions to stereotype the Chinese. There are ugly, greedy and lazy Chinese as there are ugly, greedy and lazy Malays and Indians. – December 3, 2014.

* T. K. Chua reads The Malaysian Insider.

* This is the personal opinion of the writer or publication and does not necessarily represent the views of The Malaysian Insider.

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