Wednesday, 3 June 2009

Malay-sia : Governance, Royalty, "keDaulatan" & Racism.

"This shows how narrow-minded these people are. They probably have very small brains. Furthermore, these people are actually closet racists."
- RPK, Closet Racists in Malaysia Today


The Royal Houses of Malaysia have repeatedly come under close scrutiny (and understandably so) - and has been receiving quite a few black eyes of late. Except for Perlis and Kedah, I guess the rest have collected their black eyes at one time or other. Without a doubt, they need some PR (I mean public relations- not Pakatan Rakyat!) assistance to do some "damage control" (and maybe some finishing school exposure too- HaHa!).

It is strange though, that RPK should write the above about those who comment negatively about the Royal houses. It is understandable that he should give prominence publish Mahathir's 1,2,3 - to shore up the sagging sales on, or any other reason. But attacking those who speak the truth, to defend "Kedaulatan Melayu" is I believe, a little "out" in my books.

Below is my comment in response to RPK's presumption/allegation that all those who whacked the royalty and said that it was a waste of money were "Racists". That is I believe, a very simplistic argument - much like what the Veteran who claimed that all who are in support of Chin Peng's return are Communists, and Ku Adnan's claims that all bloggers are unemployed housewives (or KJ's claim that some protesters who take to the streets are monkeys.

This piece u wrote ... well- yes & no.
What you imply in your conclusions - that all anti-monarchists are anti-Malay racists is totally "misguided". Then comes your analogies - exaggerations totally out of sync.
You do have your points - that money isn't the real issue where the royalty is concerned - but very weak arguments, Pete.

It is often said that money is just the instrument/ tool/ vehicle that is used in many a "quarrel". Usually, it isn't the money, but rather the issues that lie around the money, that is of concern.
Money isn't the only issue here. Just becos it is mentioned, it doesn't mean that it is the real issue. Just ask any LHDN hotshot or any politician - he'll tell you!

You know very well, that it goes far deeper than that - and to label those using it as an avenue to express their discontent is out of line. Of course there are racists from all walks of life, and in all communities - the royalties included.
The people need to realize that they (the royal houses) played an important role to maintain the identity of the land, when the demographics did not suit them after 1957. There was a real need to maintain the Malay way of life/ culture, and prevent it from being obliterated by the very (economically)powerful Chinese community.
That situation has however been addressed through many a social engineering project over the last 50 yrs - and as such the relevance of the royalties will be increasingly be questioned over the next decade or so.

The point here are these:-
  • Do these people lead exemplary lives as representatives of the people?
  • Do they do justice to the role they assume at the cost of the people?
  • Do these "high & mighty" represent the interests of only a sector of society, and expect all and sundry to accept them?
  • If not, what then is their role?
  • Do they contribute to good governance and national integration, or do they actually help subvert it?
  • Is it an "insurance policy" as you may choose to imply, or are the people held at ransom by certain quarters who play up their insecurities?
  • Does a certain community need role-playing figures to give them this sense of belonging?
  • Is that how low the morale of these people are- that their "kedaulatan" depends on people who don't seem to be able to earn their respect and their 5-sen?

All systems of governance have their advantages and disadvantages.
The question is whether they can change with the times & perform the functions as society evolves. Should the system not be able to adapt - it becomes obsolete, and for better or worse, will be replaced with another. In Malaysia, the era of the aristocracy consolidated by Umno is coming to an end, and changes are visible in the political horizon.
The idea Pete, is to wean the people off this so called racism, and not to point fingers, play the blame game, or reinforce the idea through divisive propaganda.