Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Bahasa Malaysia

This article is actually a response to invitation to give my comments by another blogger on this article http://deminegara.blogspot.com/2008/11/racial-polarisation-and-forging-of.html
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Thanks for inviting me to comment. I think I missed all the fun. It took me quite sometime to read through this extra long article. Perhaps DemiNegara should come up with a book ala TDM on his blog.

The issue and comments thereafter have digressed quite a bit from the original article, I think.
Anyway. I quite agree with the article and assertions that Bahasa Malaysia should be given it's adequate respect and used as a unifying tool of all races in the country, hence was my suggestion that we should only have one school and close down all vernacular schools.

This has been done in Singapore although their medium of instruction is in English. I don't see any Indians or Chinese in Singapore losing their culture of identity by just going to same school. This is a proven fact and education extremist in Malaysia conveniently omit this fact when arguing their case.

I am a Indian with Malayalam as my mother tongue, a national school product and have had unique experience of studying in a various different schools due to the nature of my father's job.

The most unique experience was when me and my brothers were the only non-malay in 2,000 student in a Felda school in Kota Tinggi in the late 80s. I think non-malays today would shudder to think of sending their children to such a school. This remains the point of contention by Education groups, extremist and parents for not sending their children to national schools.

Did I experience discrimination, yes I did but that's in the begining where students and teacher looked at me differently. We did get all the nasty stares, racist comments and even 'Keling' was used regularly. As the months went by, we made friends with Malays there, played with them and even hanging out with them off school hours. We were also there in the Agama classes, joined in some religious related functions (can't remember what but i do remember having a meal with my malays friends in a Dulang).

We did end up being influenced by them, Our bahasa was better and even superior than the malays themselves, that includes the dialect. As teenager, it was not a surprise that we also started to follow the dressing and hair ala rock stars. Point to note that these were the Search And Wings era. I was hooked by the rock music and we even went to the extend of analysing their lyrics. On the other hand, we still spoke our mother tongue at home, watch tamils movies without fail and not fogetting the Tamil Radio Six.

At no point I felt threatened or being forced to accept anything, including the religion. In fact we learned to understand Islam better. My understanding and the message I get from the teachers at that infacy stage is that there's nothing wrong with Islam, it's just the people who proclaim themselves Islamic and promote their own agenda the wrong way. I think the problem remains the same today. I also think that the over-islamisation of some schools and massive negative publicity they recieve when something goes wrong in national schools, prompts parents to run for cover and their cover is Tamil and Chinese Schools.

Coming back to the language, I am, at times (now becoming more regular) ashamed at the way the language is spoken by non-malays, even by non-malay graduates. I understand that at least a credit in Bahasa malaysia is required to enter unversities but then if you look at the quality of spoken Bahasa from the graduates, some are downright atrocious. This I believe, is a result of Bahasa Malaysia being taught only to pass exams begining from primary school, hence the verbal/spoken Bahasa were not given equal emphasis.

I agree that ASTRO and various radio channels available made things worse. Those days, before ASTRO came into the picture, I remember the during prime time,we are made to watch news in Bahasa Malaysia/Melayu or at one point Baku. Now we have a choice and naturally, non-malays switch to news in Tamil or Mandarin. The government, in their effort to please non-malays, allowed this freedom to continue until now where non malays do not watch Bahasa Malaysia news unless there's some controversial news in the town.

I have written on teaching maths and science in English,I do support the policy as it would definitely benefit everyone and would prove to uplift the socio-economic condition of the majority poor, regardless of race, in the long run, provided adequate support and structures are in place to undertake the effort without compromising the status of Bahasa Malaysia. The compulsory pass in Bahasa Malaysia and a Credit requirement to enter universities are a good measure to ensure students are forced to learn and master the language. In Malaysia, we may have to use this form of force to make things happen.

I would have probably repeated some of the point made by others and readers would have been bored by now. I will end my comments with this; (please apologise if there are any mistakes)

Bahasa Malaysia perlu dihormati dan diberi pengiktirafan sepenuh hati oleh semua kaum jika kaum kaum yang ada dinegara ini menganggap dirinya sebagai warganegara Malaysia yang taat dan setia. Taat and setia juga bermaksud menghormati asal usul dan suasana negara masyarakat majmuk. Inilah kesilapan TDM. TDM kata 'Melayu Mudah Lupa', saya ingin perbetulkannya, 'Rakyat Melaysia mudah lupa'.

25 comments:

Kay said...

its quite funny, the similarities from your primary school days being the only 2 non malays, and mine!keling is a word me and my malay n chinese frens joke about, it was not at all serious.same goes when i ridicule them racially...it was fun... good ol days i say, I had a blast.
Malay language should be the bridge! Should honor it!

gs said...

firstly you are an Indian but you want to highlight that you are Malayalee and you seem to be proud of that.! Thats the problem in Malaysia, the Malays feel this way so do the chinese and Indians like you!!We have to change ourselves before we attempt to change the nation. Ask the malayalees ,ask the telugus, ask the punjabis ask the Tamils can we share one identity as Indians just like the word Keling we are equally referred to? Even you for the matter would not!!

balan said...

Hey GS,
Thanks for your comments.

I am well pass that, means getting emotional over some trivial name calling that does not mean anything. Insult is an insult, it does not go beyond that unless people dont get emotional. That's where the problem lies.

Many decades ago, Keling was an acceptable referrence to Indians until it was misused to mean as an insult.

I know that the Indians do exactly the same in private on other races too, so we are all the same, old hyprocrites, what say you...

Amad? said...

my chinese relatives call me Amad.. eventhough my name is not Ahmad or Mohammad. I realsie later that it was to mean 'driver'.. the derogatory term for a Malay i assume ... there could be worse.

Amad? said...

my chinese relatives call me Amad.. eventhough my name is not Ahmad or Mohammad. I realsie later that it was to mean 'driver'.. the derogatory term for a Malay i assume ... there could be worse.

>;;;pooran;;;<- said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Shubash Kumar JB said...

I am proud to be one of the non-Malay student at the Felda school that you have mentioned. Life was though then but slowly i realised that our parents did not make the wrong decision to send us there. I also had the privilege to eat in the 'dulang' like you with the Malay students and had good relationship with them. Going to national school will definitely upheld the unity among all races.I support national school and bangsa Malaysia but just wondering when we can achieve so called bangsa Malaysia without racist community

Kembara Politik said...

Still remember the hard time?

Thank you Felda for everythings!

indian84 said...

well balan if u tink u r not a indian thn dnt talk abt indians!!! well i do f lots f malay n chinese frens.... evn malay ask me m i a 'mamak' guy cz my malay so fluent.. but yet im frm tamil schl....i f no prob 2 mix up wit thm...

i tink u f problem to acept that u r malayalee n seen as 'INDIANS'.. chnge ur mentaly b4 giv any comment abt indians n tamil schl...

again tis is a warning frm INDIANS n TAMIL SCHL STDNTS!!!!!!

Pak Idrus said...

balan, I am from the generation of pre Merdeka. We are a nation of just 50 years and the nationalist did made many mistakes and one of this is the closing of the English School. The English school is actually the binding factor for national unity. We no longer felt to talk about race in this school. Because of my education in a English School I think Malaysian. As for race it would be there forever. We just cannot erase race and over times we would regard ourselves more Malaysian then the race just like the American do.

Our constitution stipulates that this country is known as Malaysia in both English and Malay, so legally we are Malaysian by national. In the micro sense we may call ourselves as Malay Malaysian, Chinese Malaysian, Tamil Malaysian, Kadazan Malaysian, Iban Malay and on and on but we are all Malaysian.

March 8, jolted the nation and we did change and the changes do not stop there, your generation and the generation to come would continue to made that changes.

What my hope is that they reintroduce back the English school, call it the Sekolah Kebangsaan Jenis English, if not we would be at lost to acquire knowledge and compete with the world. BM would continue to be the National Language, no question about that.

BTW I was working in Kluang from 1967. Have a nice day.

kalimullah hassan said...

The English language established a socio-economic class hegemony centred in the commercial capital Colombo, that has remained largely unchanged from colonial times. On the other hand, the continuing transfer of surplus money, knowledge and skills from the rural periphery to the mercantile centre led to rural underdevelopment and exploitation, and its inevitable consequences: impoverishment, unemployment, and a marginalised angry, frustrated, militant youth, impatient for the fruits of the affluence being flaunted by the privileged minority in the mercantile centre, Colombo.

The rate of this transfer of surplus to Colombo was highest from the Tamil population in the North, for causes attributable, not to the Sinhalese, but the Tamils themselves. Asian cultures place high value on education. The conversion of material surplus into intellectual capital is an established tradition in these cultures. Governor Colebrook has made pointed reference to the extremely poor quality of both government and Dutch and British missionary education in the South, in the Sinhalese areas. On the other hand, he is full of praise for the endeavours of the American missionaries in the North, where he had noted creditable proficiency in mathematics, English and other branches of useful knowledge. Colebrook goes on to say: "As the northern districts of the island are chiefly indebted to these missionaries for the progress of education, the benefits of which are already experienced, it is but just to recommend that they should receive all the encouragement from the government, to which their exertions and exemplary conduct have entitled them".

These differentials in the quality of modern education offered to the Sinhalese and Tamil population continued from colonial times, so that immediately before independence, according to the survey of H. W. Howes who was appointed as Director of Education by the D. S. Senanayake government, the large majority of schools able to offer a good modern education served less than 7% of the population in the North. These Grade A schools are those which provided a good education and modern knowledge, with English as the medium of instruction.

In a market economy, surplus money, knowledge and skills relative to local needs will by and large, flow to wherever more money can be earned and made, and where there are more things to buy in the way of goods and services. Inevitably, over the past 100 years, the well educated offspring of the Tamil middle-class of the North migrated to the commercial centre Colombo, thus transferring, in the form of intellectual capital, a substantial part of the material surplus created by the Tamil peasantry, fisherfolk, merchant class etc. in northern Sri Lanka.

In Colombo, they joined their Sinhalese and Muslim counterparts from other regions of the country to make money, invest money, and become an influential and privileged constituency in the Anglophile sub-culture of Colombo. The official language was English which, from colonial times to the present, has remained the medium of instruction and the lingua franca of the ruling political, bureaucratic, professional nexus has remained the 'Open Sesame' to the wealth and privileges that could be acquired in the Ali Baba's cave of Colombo from the colonial to the contemporary period.

In a modernising trading economy, that cannot be changed by the mere adoption of Sinhalese, Tamil and Arabic as official languages. Even of the Grade A schools outside the North, the large majority were clustered round Tamil minority, although they constituted less than 8% of the population, had access to a total of over 90% of the Grade A schools, with English as the medium of instruction.

The fact that the chief beneficiaries amongst the Tamils belonged to the privileged Brahmin and Vellala castes was the source of significant long term socio-economic distortions for Tamil people of the North and East. On the other hand, the rural Sinhalese, the Muslims of the East, and the Indian Tamil plantation workers of Indian descent, who constitute over 80 percent of the population of the country, came to be almost totally deprived of the benefit of Grade A education and access to English.

It is this intellectual inheritance nurtured in educational privileges perpetuated from colonial times, that has been perverted into the racist myth that the northern Tamils perform better in the educational process because of a superior racial intellectual inheritance, compared to the Sinhalese and Muslims. It is this same myth that has been politically exploited by the linguistically privileged Tamil leaders living in Colombo, to foster the grievance amongst the Tamil intelligentsia, particlarly the youth, that the increase in the number of Sinhalese relative to the Tamils, who enter the higher education process and professions, is due to discrimination by the Sinhalese.

The myth of persecution of Tamils by the Sinhalese, because of Tamil racial superiority, propagated by the Anglophile Tamil leaders in Colombo, has been the basis for Pirubakaran's fascist ideological indoctrination of the Tamil youth of Jaffna. The consequences are not dissimilar to Adolf Hitler's Nazi indoctrination of German youth with the myth of Aryan superiority over the Jews and the rest of Europe. The Indian Tamil plantation workers, the Muslims of the East, and the vast majority of the Sinhalese and the Tamils have been manipulated into ethnic racist confrontation, through the machinations of these Anglophile Tamil leaders in collusion with their Sinhalese and Muslim counterparts.

The national revival movement initiated by Anagarika Dharmapala and C. W. W. Kannangara's education reforms, fostered a realization of the extent of their cultural and economic deprivation amongst the Sinhala swabasha intelligentsia. The cause of that deprivation was cultural and economic exploitation, which were the two faces of one coin, namely English linguistic hegemony. It was this Sinhala swabasha intelligentsia that generated the political force that carried S. W. R. D. Bandaranaike to power in 1956.

The Sinhalese political leadership exploited the justifiable grievances arising from the exclusion of the vernacular educated masses from upward social mobility, by the retention of English as the state language even after independence. S. W. R. D. Bandaranaike and Phillip Gunewardene roused the exploited and the deprived Sinhala vernacular constituency, with the promise to replace English with Sinhala as the official language, in order to emancipate the vernacular constituency from their economic and cultural enslavement in the chains of English linguistic hegemony.

On the other hand, the Tamil swabasha intelligentsia in the North and East never received the kind of leadership that the Sinhala swabasha intelligentsia had received. Upto 1956, the Tamil leadership in the South had agitated for equality in power sharing, the fifty-fifty demand of the Tamil Congress, within the Sinhalese-Tamil-Muslim Anglophile oligarchy of the South. The leaders of the Tamil migrants to the South and several generations of their descendants, aggravated the socio-economic deprivation in the North consequent to their migration by giving priority to consolidating Tamil political and economic power and the prosperity of their kith and kin in the South, leaving the vernacular Tamil population of the North and East to their own devices.

Prime Minister, Mrs. Sirima Bandaranaike's claim that the Tamils are one of the most privileged minorities in the world, (Mr. Gunaseela Vitanage, The Island, 22 August) needs no qualification where these Tamils of Colombo are concerned. These Tamil migrants who prospered in the South not only deprived the vernacular Tamils of the North and East of the surplus product of their labour, but also usurped the political power of the latter to further the privileges and interests of the English educated Tamils of the South. On the other hand, the vernacular Tamils and Muslims, like the vernacular Sinhalese, have become amongst the most under-privileged people in the world, exploited and controlled economically, culturally and politically by a leadership led by the privileged Anglophile class consisting of Sinhalese, Tamils and Muslims.

The success of SWRD Bandaranaike's SLFP in overthrowing the UNP which had become the creature of the Anglophile elite of Colombo, made SJV Chelvanayakam realize the potential for linguistic exploitation of the Tamil vernacular constituency to bolster the waning power of the Tamil Anglophile elite of Colombo. The Tamil leaders, all of whom were rooted in the South, resorted to chauvinistic politics in order to prevent English being replaced by Sinhalese. In this endeavour, they were helped by the Anglophile Sinhalese constituency.

To their credit, the intellectual and political leadership of the vernacular Sinhalese intelligentsia, democratically endorsed by the latter, have never resorted to anti-Tamil racist ideology to elevate the status of the under-privileged Sinhalese. It is the elitist Anglophile leaders, both capitalist and socialist, who have tried to camouflage their ulterior intention to retain English as the State language by identifying the demand to replace English with Sinhala as chauvinistic and racist. They ignore and deride the real achievements that accrued from the adoption of Sinhala as the State language.

In the MEP government of 1956, Phillip Gunewardene and TB Illangaratne were two politicians who did try to restructure the rural economy and increase rural capital accumulation and investment by the introduction of rural banking, rural communication, and rural commerce and rural land reform. But this would not have been possible without the adoption of Sinhala as a state language.

An objective review of the changes that have occurred in the Sri Lankan economy will reveal that the catalyst for the entrepeneurism that Gunewardene and Illangaratne were instrumental in generating in the South, was the use of Sinhala as an official language. It led to a huge growth in the informal economy. It was this growth in the informal economy that provided the surplus and the incentives for the exponential growth in competent professional, technical and skilled human resources within the rural mass. These human resources were under-utilized until the market economy of the 1980's was introduced.

The growth rates of the 1980's would never have been achieved but for the huge expansion in the rural infra-structure and its informal economy generated in the 1950's and early 1960's. The informal economy could have developed and grown to become the basis of a Jathika Arthikaya, inspired by a Jathika Chinthanaya, in interaction with the modernising formal economy.

However, the ideological straitjacket of the socialist economy of the 1970's, and the moral idiocy of the neo-colonialist market economy of the 1980's have subverted the development of such a Jathika Arthikaya. Another reason for the subversion is the failure of the ruling Anglophile establishment to impart a knowledge of English to the Swabasha educated intelligentsia. Swabasha education and Sinhala as the official language have been made the excuse for the failure. But can it be seriously argued that an education in the English medium could have been made available to even a substantial fraction of the population leave alone the majority, with the resources that were available, at anytime?

The democratically endorsed political and intellectual leadership of the Tamils have adopted an openly linguist-racist ideological position. They have used linguist racist political ideology openly to indoctrinate the poverty stricken mass of the Tamil people of the North and the East with an ethnic racist political ideology of Eelam, which they then used to blackmail Sinhalese political leaders, in an attempt to establish Tamil minority hegemony in the democratic political system of the Sri Lankan state. It is the Tamil political leadership, not the Sinhalese, who must bear the responsibility for making their youth the easy prey of Tamil fascist indoctrination from South India.

The inevitable cycle of ethnic violence between the Sinhalese and Tamils set in motion by a Tamil leadership with primary loyalties to the Tamil people of the South, further the latter's power struggle for political and material privileges in the South, whilst bringing death, destruction and misery to the people of the North and East. The guilt for this should be apportioned equally to the greed of the ruling Sinhalese, Tamil and Muslim Anglophile oligarchy, of which the SLFP and the UNP are two sides of the same coin. Their objective is the well-being of the oligarchy of the English educated political, bureaucratic, professional nexus of Sinhalese, Tamils and Muslims. Pirubakaran and his 'Boys' are, like

Wijeweera and the JVP, the creations and the victims of the machinations of this oligarchy.

The Sinhala Buddhist people have been made the scape-goat for the crimes of this Anglophile oligarchy of Sinhalese, Tamils and Muslims. The counterfeit coin with which the Tamil leaders of the South try to pay for their shameful exploitation of the Tamils in the North and the East to increase their power and wealth in the South is Sinhalese chauvinism.

Pirubakaran and the 'Boys' were indoctrinated with racist Tamil ideology by the TULF to serve the interests of the Tamils in the South. But the Boys soon came to realize that they were mere pawns in the power moves of the Tamils of the South. That is why Pirubakaran has not shown chauvinistic bias where the murder of politicians is concerned: he has eliminated many more Tamil politicians than Sinhalese politicians.

Prabhakaran and the LTTE, like the JVP leadership has seen through the power game of the Tamil political leaders of the South and their collusion with the Sinhalese and Muslim political leaders. He is ruthlessly sacrificing the under-privileged Tamils of the North to destroy this power base in the South. The racist indoctrination initiated by the Tamil leaders of the South has turned the LTTE into a fascist killing machine, just as Marxist indoctrination turned the JVP into a fascist killing machine, not unlike that of Pol Pot and the Khemer Rouge.

The LTTE has to be seen to be the creature not of Sinhalese chauvinism, but of cynical betrayal by the privileged Tamils who have become part of the Southern ruling Anglophile oligarchy. Pirubakaran is making the Tamils of the North and East aware of the role played by the Tamil politicians of the South, just as Wijeweera exposed the hollowness of the UNP and the SLFP.

That may be why the TULF of Dr. Neelan Tiruchelvam, expatriate Tamils and the intellectual hirelings of the Ethnic Study Centre and other NGO's have to use Chandrika Kumaratunga as their cats-paw, to continue to consolidate the political power and wealth of the Tamil elite domiciled in the South.

The mass of the Tamils in the South should shed the blinkers of racist Tamil politics and take a hard look at the road to isolation from both the Sinhala and the Tamil masses into which the moral idiocy of their political leaders is taking them. They can take a lesson from the estate Tamils, and the Muslims, who have begun to realize that without the good-will of the poor Sinhala masses, horse-deals with the discredited rootless Anglophile political - professional - bureaucratic nexus, UNP or SLFP, can only lead to endless killing fields for Sinhalese, Tamils and Muslims alike

balan said...

There you go, another emotional outburst.

Mr Indian84,

I had trouble with your writing. Is this what universities teach nowadays.

I think you did not understand the whole article or rather, the message.

I regret that your premier university did not teach you how to comprehend an article as a whole and I am not surprised, by looking at the quality of your written English.

This discussion in about Malaysian Unity, national language and school system and has got nothing to do with being malayalee or tamil.

I request you to please read the whole article again.

Knights Templar said...

Balan ,how can indian84 read and understand your posting ? he has the "CHRONIC TAMIL SCHOOL MENTALITY SYNDROME" and in some cases its beyond cure as much as we want to help them.You are a S.R.J.K product whilist i am a procuct of S,R.J.K (ING) ,so its even more difficult for me understanding people of his level of aptitute.People like him will be happy watching basha and being a wannabe Rajani or Vijay .....he cares not for the betterment of his society.For people like him to understand national unity is almost impossible.I for one could never understand the fact that 1.2 million tamil Hindus walking up 272 steps of Batu Caves to have the mantra read by 5 priests chanting in sanskrit ! A language they dont even understand, Comming back to tamil schools ...i agree there have been doctors and so many other professionals coming from tamil school backgrounds ..but at what percentage ? the real issue here is national unity..period ..with one unifying language ...and thats Bahasa Malaysia....Period.How will the malays accept us as fellow malaysians ..when we ourself dont embrace the one language one nation factor ?i will end with this ......Tamil schools are sacrificial lambs of a political agenda

balan said...

Rational minded friends, I reproduce another comment from Indian84. I removed profanities from his comments as I do not want my blog to be tainted with vulgarities.
-----------------------------------

balan as i said u just shut up ur xxxx mouth!!! bcos u dnt f any xxxxxx right 2 talk abt tamil schl!!! if u cnt understan wat oth ppl write thn shut close ur blady blog n lay eggs perhaps!! u pulish ur article so u shld come out wit figures...for ur info pls refer 2 ystdys UPSR result.. abt 917 indian stdts frm tamil schl score
7A's!! can u show ny number how SK schl indian stdnt score 5A's?? i didnt blame thm but ur writing may bring uneasiness between tamil n SK schl stdnt!!! i had 4wrd ur article to some of my frens who came frm SK schl...i did that i jus wan 2 c wat d reality n wats d majority voice. u no wat thy say u r talking RUBISH n total crap wat evr u write!! thy feel had miss sumting important in their life jus coz didn go 2 tamil schl.. evn thy prefer 2 sen their children 2 tamil schl in future. evn i 4wrd ur writing 2 some of my boses n thr totaly disagree wit ur writing!! as a tamil schl student i manage 2 get some SK schl stdnt who realy support tamil schl.. so can u show may indians rly wan tamil schl 2 b closed.. if u dare enough can u made such statement in public??? im sure u'll end up at GRAVEYARD!!!
1st put urslf in d situatuion b4 make ny coment!!! so as tol u early u dnt f ny xxxxx rghts 2 talk abt INDIANS n TAMIL schl!! xxxxxxx indian like jus bring damages 2 our community n keep comdem our ppl!!!

can u show ny proof that u help indians frm tamil schl who strugal wit education n communication in
scndry schl??
----------------------------------

Again, another emotional outburst from MR Indian84, who dares me to everything but afraid to identify himself!!

Mr Indian84, this is already a public forum where everyone is provided an opportunity to express their opinion, regardless whether they agree with the opinion expressed.

I have a choice to SHUT YOU OUT of this blog and deny you the chance to give your opinion, I didn't, but you want me to shut up!!

Again, as agreed by Knight Templar, Indian84 does not have the aptitude to understand the article as a whole.

There's no point arguing with someone who is bent on putting a stop to rational discussion which rightly has it's merits.

To my non-Indian friends, I regret that you are subject to reading this nonsense from Indian84 that might make you see Indians in a bad light.

Believe me, there are many who are like me, Kay, Knights Templar, Shubash etc.

Shubash JB said...

Indian84 please go and improve your English first before you join the rest in Balan's blog.Everyone has the privilege to give their fair opinion regardless whether they agree or not. You did not get the whole idea of the the article. Please go and read through again and again.Why being so emotional? The article is about Malaysian unity and national language.And your outburst create a bad impression on Indians by other non-Malay friends. And you judge Tamil school academic performance out of sudden by giving the latest UPSR result. How you can judge Tamil school performance by giving only this year's result? Where have been all the good results all this years? If you are not happy just visit other bloggers who only discuss about Tamil schools only.Please dont spoil this healthy discussion.

Muhammad Azli Shukri said...

kupasan yang menarik..

arly said...

Hi,

The notion of Nation itself is a false reality. The move towards multiculturalism is actually under a guise of a more "superior" ethnic group or of the majority group within that country, to command that country "effectively".

These are not that bad, we need some form of narration (history) and signs with symbolic meanings to make us have a common identity. Else, we will forever be floating in between horizons, never landing nor never seeing an end to anything.

Language - for this case, Bahasa Malaysia - its ideology is to unite all citizens into a common linguistic/semiotic system - having a common understanding and cultural system; however this "common understanding" may not have common experiences, plurality of experiences and needs of each individual need to be appreciated and respected.

I got your blog link from another blog called The Malaysian.

I am a student from the National University of Singapore and am aspiring to do a dissertation on e-democracy in Malaysia. If you could kindly spare some time and help me - interview you (Mr Balan Kumar and the commentators here), please drop me an email :)

arlianny.s.
arly.sophistique@gmail.com

Jed Yoong said...

Hi,

"As the article notes, ultimately the truth lies somewhere in between all these different points of view, and anyone seriously interested in the news should get it from a variety of sources."

It's true. No offence but the Tamil nationalists can get quite worked up....

Anyway, I think Bahasa should be embraced and am shocked to get blog comments like "I do sympathize with the Malays here, but the sad fact is that learning the Malay isn’t a particularly useful skill to have, so most people see no point in learning it beyond the minimum necessary to adequately interact with government. It’s not chauvinism or imperialism. It’s just not useful or practical to devote real effort to."

What can I say? Can you blame me for saying the Chinese feel superior and are not loyal?

indian84 said...

hahaha...no surprise some of the SK student form a group to fight against a SRJK(T) student. Well some critic saying im a tamil school minded. Ok what ever it is im not going to let down our tamil school pride and will fight against people like you guys.

ok balan and other guys at least i had show some figure to proof that our tamil school students doing better than Sk school students but i cant you guys show any number to proof that my argument is wrong.

As I told you earlier that can’t deny most the successful Indian in our country have tamil school education i.e AK, Samy Vellu, Kader Ibrahim and many more (don’t expect me to list out everyone ).

Ok come back to reality can you show any proof to support you claim tamil school student can’t speak good and fluent Malay? For you info in year 2000’s not very sure which year there were 5 master students who get gold medal in their Pengajian Melayu studies. Out of 5 students 3 of them were Indian who teaching in SMC now. Again this shows that tamil school students can master Malay language better than Malays n SK school students.

Balan you must understand that language is pride of every community. Why Malay language should preserve in National Constitution if Malays are not scared losing their identity. As you said in this give and take country I would welcome Vision School if all agree to learn all Malay, Chinese and Tamil regardless their race in 1 school. If this can happen than I would appreciate the move because its fair for all. But you can’t run away from the reality that everybody tries to not let down their mother tongue.

What ever is your argument the reality is Malaysian are not open minded and mature enough to see other language is not a treat to their mother tongue. As I told you no matter what race are you never touch sensitive issue such as language. Again and again I remind you that put your self in the situation before make any comments. Earlier I ask you to show any proof that you as a Indian help another Indian who struggled with their education and communication. So show it now! I throw this challenge not only to Balan but Kay, Knights Templar, Shubash as well. My argument is simple have you put yourself in the situation before make any comments and did you help another Indian before in the issue that you all keep condemn Indians?? Is yes please show the proof!

balan said...

Indian84 : hahaha...no surprise some of the SK student form a group to fight against a SRJK(T) student. Well some critic saying im a tamil school minded. Ok what ever it is im not going to let down our tamil school pride and will fight against people like you guys.

Balan : This is not about SK against SKJK.

Indian84: ok balan and other guys at least i had show some figure to proof that our tamil school students doing better than Sk school students but i cant you guys show any number to proof that my argument is wrong.

As I told you earlier that can’t deny most the successful Indian in our country have tamil school education i.e AK, Samy Vellu, Kader Ibrahim and many more (don’t expect me to list out everyone ).

Balan : These are just names, what happened to numbers. If 90% of Indians are sending their children to Tamil Schools, why cry poverty, discrimination bla..bla if they are succesfull as you claim.

Indian84 : Ok come back to reality can you show any proof to support you claim tamil school student can’t speak good and fluent Malay? For you info in year 2000’s not very sure which year there were 5 master students who get gold medal in their Pengajian Melayu studies. Out of 5 students 3 of them were Indian who teaching in SMC now. Again this shows that tamil school students can master Malay language better than Malays n SK school students.

Balan : Your example is cream of the crop, what about the rest. I spoke about my own experience in secondary school.

Indian84 : Balan you must understand that language is pride of every community. Why Malay language should preserve in National Constitution if Malays are not scared losing their identity. As you said in this give and take country I would welcome Vision School if all agree to learn all Malay, Chinese and Tamil regardless their race in 1 school. If this can happen than I would appreciate the move because its fair for all. But you can’t run away from the reality that everybody tries to not let down their mother tongue.

Balan : Pooh, finally you got the message. This is what I am proposing, one school for all.

Indian84 : What ever is your argument the reality is Malaysian are not open minded and mature enough to see other language is not a treat to their mother tongue.

balan : Are you talking about yourselves!!.

Indian84 : As I told you no matter what race are you never touch sensitive issue such as language.

balan : This is not about language, i repeat.

Indian84: Again and again I remind you that put your self in the situation before make any comments.

Balan : What situation, what are you talking about.

Indian84 : Earlier I ask you to show any proof that you as a Indian help another Indian who struggled with their education and communication. So show it now! I throw this challenge not only to Balan but Kay, Knights Templar, Shubash as well. My argument is simple have you put yourself in the situation before make any comments and did you help another Indian before in the issue that you all keep condemn Indians?? Is yes please show the proof!

Balan : Put yourself This article is not about helping Indians or condemning Indians. Please do not go out of topic. So showing proof does not arise at all and by the way, why should we show proof to someone who's afraid to identify himself.

I urge you to look at good evidence just nearby. There are no Tamil Schools in Singapore, everyone goes to the same school. That's what I am proposing.

There are no lost language, pride, culture or identity whatsoever.

indian84 said...

hahaha....its like u cant show any proof 2 ur argument.... wel ppl u cnt acept d reality will keep deny it!!1 wakakakakaka.......

Ridzzy said...

indian84,

What the hell? Come on, read Balan's article again, Dissect the points and place your arguements on each that you do not agree with.

Why are you going on about ?
if you think that Tamil schools have done alot for the indian community, you really have no idea about the situation of the community.

How is a unifying factor a threat? Do you not see the long term effects of what Balan is talking about here? Unifying factor. Think about it.
How about the idea of gradual abolishment of university quotas, meaning more places in university for indians? sounds good? Well do you have a game plan to get there? No , i bet not .. all you have is tamil pride, tamils can do this on your own , tamil....

You probably have not done much living if you think the current education system works best the way it is.

Anonymous said...

Balan,
Berhenti dari melayan si Indian84 tu, you pun sudah jadi macam dia!.

Some people not worth to argue with and if argue, we are stupid than them, ok?.

I am Malay married to Indian. Recently, his niece married and wedding ceremony held in a hall. I notice that almost all youngters
speaks in English! Of course no Bahasa but most scary is no Tamil either !.

Soon or later they will no Bahasa, no Tamil, no Cantonese, no Mandarine - only English!.

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