Are Malaysians really as racist and intolerable to one another as the media portrays them to be?

Jia Wei

Jia Wei, Lived in Russia for half a decade

Répondu il y a 41w · L'auteur dispose de réponses 138 et de vues de réponses 342.4k

I am a Chinese born and bred in Kuala Lumpur in the most traditional Chinese way possible which means ass-whooping, flying slippers, getting if possible 100% in exams and eating with chopsticks.

I am the 4th generation Chinese, and my great-grandfather who sailed here across the South-China-Sea to mine (back then he was mining tins, I wished he mined bitcoin) in what was known then as the Malay Peninsula.

At the age of 7, I was enrolled to a national school in Malaysia (because the school is located directly opposite of my home, and it is more logistically available back then) , while most of my cousins were enrolled to schools that were conducted in their mother-tongue (Chinese). A national school meant that the school I was studying had a majority of 70% of Malay and 30% of other races.

Things were fairly good in the beginning until I was 9 years old ( Year 3), when jokes started to be a little harsher and boys that age were a little meaner. I, being a minority was constantly subjected to verbal harassments, they made fun of me for “eating pork”, that we Taoist are “praying to statutes” and etc. Boys will always be boys, and I would be lying if I said I was not hurt by being segregated just for “eating pork” or by “praying to statues”.

Back then, I was lucky, I befriended someone who happened to live around my neighbourhood (he eats pork as well) and we did almost everything together. We joined the same society, went to the same class, and eventually we obtained results good enough to be admitted to one of the most prestigious school in Malaysia.

Things got better in the new school (we were 13 years old) probably the boys in this school were more mature or, perhaps I grew accustomed to it , that it no longer had any effect on me. 3 years in this school, I made plenty of friends, but soon a tendance formed, which I came to notice later in life, ( most of my friends were either Chinese or English speaking Malay).

Up till then, I had been brought up in a very classical “Chinese” way, in which we believe other races are not as good as ours and that they are always out there to harm us, marrying someone other than your own race is a big no-no, and chances are you would be disowned and probably if not definitely loose all of the inheritance not to mention your family name.

At the age of 16 years old, I enrolled to an even more prestigious college, it was a military college. As the name suggested, everything was military, a college in which they do not care who you are or who your father is/was less they care was your religion, the only thing differentiating you from the person next to you was the number you were assigned to and your determination.

Again, I would be lying if I said I was not discriminated for being a Chinese in a school where the Chinese in this could be counted with your fingers (most Chinese prefer to be comfortable in their own home rather than to be “in the army”) . In the beginning I felt like I was again being segregated, however it did not take long for that feeling to be washed away. I also noticed that my Malay language was getting way better, and in less than 6 months, I was able to converse fluently in Malay without any accent and spoke tremendously well than before. Something which I couldn’t do in 9 years, i was able to do it there in less than 6 months.

Slowly, I bonded well with my Malay brothers, I learnt whatever they shared with me, their culture, their heritage and a little of their religion. I began to accept these differences and actively worked to make myself for “Malay”. In less than 1 year, I was accepted and became “one of them”. After 2 years in the college, as we “Passing Out” (I do not know what is the right verb in Past tense), I had gained great knowledge, experience and most of all I gained 200 other brothers of different parents, race and even religion.

I did well in the college, and was given the opportunity to study abroad. There I met even more friends of different ethnicity and bonded well with them too through my understanding and my knowing on how to accept others despite their differences.

At the time of this writing, I have more friends (whom I can count on) of different races than I have of the same race. Sometimes, it takes two to tango, everyone wants their needs to be met first and expect others to tolerate with it.

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In my most humble opinion, if one wants to change how things are, it is always best to change the person you wake up to see every morning in the mirror as Michael Jackson said “If you want to make the world a better place, Take a look in the mirror and make that change”.

Are Malaysians really as racist and intolerable to one another as the media portrays them to be?

In a nutshell :

We Malaysians, are not malicious to one another. It is just misunderstandings and culturally difference that we believe appear to be unable to tolerate with each other (except for extremists who we believe have political agendas). I think and dare to say that the next generation Malaysia will embrace these differences better than we did.

Muddassir Masihuddin

Muddassir Masihuddin, lives in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia (2010-present)

Répondu il y a 15w

I lived in Malaysia for 7 years. I still continue to visit KL occasionally.

Here’s what I think. Malaysians love convenience. What that means is they are carriers of borrowed opinions. This means it's much easier for them to borrow opinions in the form of narratives, beliefs, stories, and even news. This plays an important role in the upbringing of families and the education system. This meddled with typical stereotypes gives birth to racism.

Malaysia has three races combined that makes Malaysia what it is. The Malays, Chinese and Indians. Generally speaking, all three of these races are inherently and deeply racist from within anyway. We haven’t fought hard enough in this part of the world against racism. We are very protective of our races and not that excited with aliens. The other contributing factor to this is granting citizenship statuses. Asian countries haven’t really flirted with the idea of citizenship much like westerners did. Because flirting with the idea of granting citizenship or naturalization means to also eradicate racism from within. Now this does not mean citizenships were not given but it is not the same as west.

Add the religion into its factor and there is a whole different level of added bigotry, racism, xenophobia etc. All three races (Malays, Chinese, Indians) are somewhat religious and conservative with their ancestral identity. Even though Malaysia tries its best to practice religious tolerance, you’ll have to note that majority always overpowers minority.

Let’s not forget Bumiputera law that protects the Malay race more than Chinese or Indian race only because of their existence. There is no meritocracy in Malaysia. The Bumiputera law has damaged more than it protected Malaysia. It sends a message that their are certain people that are privileged simply because they were born in certain race. What sort of privilege is that.

Malaysia needs to reform its primary education system as well. You cannot simply have Malay school, Chinese School or Indian School. You need to bring in a law that must integrate all three races and be very strict against racism in school itself.

Yes, I have encountered my fair share of racism during my stay in Malaysia but at the same time, I met and befriended some amazing people from Malaysia.

Yes, internally, there is a disturbing racist cruelty that exists in Malaysia. They try not to show it but deep down they are effected in someway or another. But at the same time, I have also attended weddings where Indians married Malays, Malays married Indians or Indians married Chinese.

Malaysia can do better. Speak up against racism no matter where you see it.

Répondre Are Malaysians really as racist and intolerable to one another as the media portrays them to be?

No! Not as the media portrays them to be. Media is a bitch. Don’t trust media!

Wong Hiu Lan

Wong Hiu Lan

Répondu il y a 42w

You’re referring to West Malaysia [sic], right? I’m just going to exclude the North Borneo Federation since I’ve never lived there.

The concept of racial harmony has been completely destroyed after the race riots and the implementation of the NEP. It’s more of the norm to see individuals of the same ethnic group together than with a mixed group. It’s rare that people would think of themselves as Malaysian [sic], really.

An individual generally will not display personal racism (e.g., racial epithets) intentionally, but they may be compelled to when they’re frustrated, or use it as an excuse for rude behavior when there’s no explanation otherwise. On the other hand, the biggest racists belong to UMNO because of the systemic racism they implement through public policy.

This creates enmity between the various ethnic groups because it discourages people from being good samaritans, or simply greed and avarice at the cost of others (“survival of the minorities” and “it’s everyone for themselves”). Malaysia [sic] has truly become a “me-first” society, and it’s blatantly obvious by common Malaysian [sic] behaviors - queue cutting on the LRT, drivers refusing to yield to pedestrians (prioritizing their own schedule over their countrymen’s safety), the commonality of scams, and rampant tax evasion in all social classes.

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Wern Lyn

Wern Lyn, Malaysian since 1997.

Répondu il y a 42w · L'auteur dispose de réponses 196 et de vues de réponses 470.3k

As a Malaysian, I think that the government does a lot to try and segregate the races through favoring the bumiputras and other shitty things that might potentially incite racism and resentment, but generally Malaysians recognize it as a fault of the government, not the favored race and we blame the government for it, not them.

Of course there are stereotypes like “Chinese people are greedy”, “Indians are gangsters” and “Malays are lazy” but I’ve never met anyone who spouted that bullshit besides some keyboard warriors on Facebook. Racists are in every country, not just Malaysia.

And they’re certainly a minority here. (Edit to add) There are some issues with racism when it comes to the property market and some public universities.

In high school, and later in university, race wasn’t a big deal for me and my classmates/friends. We’d even share our experiences with our religion and race. I’d talk about how my CNY was, and my friends share stories about what happened during their festive celebrations.

Some groups do stick with their own race, but they were also friendly to other races.

It’s not a generational thing either. My Chinese parents and aunt would often strike up conversations in public with people of other races. No one ever seemed to care that they’re not the same race.

People don’t ‘tolerate’ other races, they accept them.

Shawn Lim

Shawn Lim, vit en Malaisie

Répondu il y a 42w · L'auteur dispose de réponses 68 et de vues de réponses 161k

Hahahhahahahaha… This is a joke right?? If so…not funny.

No, OF COURSE WE AREN’T. We are not racist to one another. I as a Chinese have both Malay and Indian friends. Heck I even have a Dayak friend. I, a Chinese would go hang out or eat at a Malay nasi lemak store. Malays cant do the same with us because most our food are non Halal. My house is within walking distance to a mosque. Every day, five times daily, I would hear the sound of Muslim prayers, I have never once lodge a complaint or anything. During Chinese New Year, we Chinese flock to temples or goes back to our hometown, traffic congestion happens, Malays and Indians too have never complaint. Why? Because they know during their own festivals the same happens, and all of us MALAYSIANS tolerate each other. I as a Chinese also sometimes make racist jokes to my Malay or Indian friends. But they would just laugh it off or just do the same back to me. All just for good fun. We can do this because we know we are all just having fun. Our culture makes us tolerate each other. Most of the time when you hear a racist remark in Malaysia, it will soon be followed up by a laughter as it is actually just a group of friends joking.

Yes, we have some small miniority radical racist. And yes, mild racism do exist. And yes, there are politicians here that continue to think of stupid and utterly foolish policies to further divide us. But in the end, we the general public is tolerant to each other BECAUSE WE ARE MALAYSIANS REGARDLESS OF RACE, ETHNICITY OR RELIGION.

So please if you are not a Malaysian. Do not make false assumptions about OUR beautiful nation.

P.S. I only make racist jokes to friends of mine who I know would be able to accept it. I also only make mild jokes, never would I overstep it as I know even jokes have a limit.

Isaac Ninan

Isaac Ninan, B.S. Chemical Engineering, Heriot-Watt University (2021)

Répondu il y a 41w

Are Americans really as racist and intolerable to one another as the media portrays them to be?

Are the British really as racist and intolerable to one another as the media portrays them to be?

Are X really as Y and Z as the media portrays them to be?

Media exists more than just to inform - it exists to entertain. And nothing is more entertaining than negativity and pessimism. After all, who is not entertained and preoccupied when they’re feeling mad.

However, much like most things, this is often exaggerated out of proportion (although there is a certain degree of truth to it which boils down to politics), giving foreigners and even some Malaysians tunnel vision with regard to the social climate in my home country.

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If anything, I think that racism for most Malaysians lie in the form of ignorance rather than intention, except for the certain few that hold legislative power (Malaysian New Economic Policy - Wikipedia) and certain extremist nutjobs (Zakir Naik - Wikipedia).

For the most part, I think we Malaysians are really nice people and we get along with each other surprisingly well, considering the vastness of our cultural differences and that most countries with a similar socioeconomic demographic don’t tend to enjoy inter-communal relationships like the ones Malaysians enjoy. Individually, I’d say Malaysians are one of the best people on Earth.

But, when we’re in big groups, riled up by visionless ‘leaders’, that niceness can easily be corrupted.

So, tldr; we’re not as racist and intolerable as the media makes it seem but we’re not so perfect either.

Azeem Ahmad

Azeem Ahmad, Software Programmer

Répondu il y a 15w · L'auteur dispose de réponses 59 et de vues de réponses 103.9k

Iam telling you the incident happened few days back with my friends.

That Day they jus took and booked the Grab car and they were 4 in numbers that sat in the car after few minutes one of my guy said to the guy who sat in front sit (all are my freind) plz increase the AIRCON he jus increased .

Now the Racism of that Guy

He was telling you need to ask first before increasing the aircon and iam malay from this country you are immigrants blah blah (rude behavior) you dont know the manners you need to ask first ahhh they all guys really astonished what the hell he was talking and yes Racism is there in malaysia at that moment frankly speaking.

I met with the malaysians who are my friends they talk in very soft voice but some are their who pollute the country with such of racism activity.

Je vous remercie.

Alan S Tan

Alan S Tan, studied at Pennsylvania State University

Répondu il y a 42w · L'auteur dispose de réponses 506 et de vues de réponses 188.4k

As a general whole, no. But in all of these cases, it a question of asking the right question. There are beneficiaries to the racist, apartheid policy and there are victims. All the screaming about being intolerant and racist is usually directed at the victim. And given that the victims have no executive control over governmental procedure and process, media and less consideration when it comes to the law, I suppose you can say they are very racist in that they keep balking across a system that forces a minority to subsidize the Muslim majority.

In general, I find the minorities fairly tolerant and accepting situations not within their control or to their benefit. I am not sure if this is because it is expedient, convenient or simply precautionary as the threat of a racially motivated riots named May 13 is usually bandied around. Please research this on your own. I am sure you can read between the lines.

Lets put it this way, try to build a new church in Malaysia. Then apply for a Certificate of Fitness. Then try applying again. And again. That is how the minorities develop tolerance.

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