Sunday, August 9, 2009

Mei's excellent letter to Malaysiakini

This letter from a Malaysiakini subscriber named Mei was published August 7th, 2009. I think it deservcs as wide an audience as possible...


I read with utter disgust that the BN government is considering net censorship. Isn't this absolutely contrary to the commitment that Mahathir gave when he was trying to lure investors into the MMSC?

The man is not even dead and you are telling me that his word is not even worth the paper he has put his pen to? And why? Because we cannot have full-blown democracy?

Look, you are either a democracy or you are not - you cannot do democracy half-way. If you are a dictator, or aspiring to take the country to such lows, at least have the guts to admit that and not hide behind rubbish like we need to be protected from ourselves.

We are 52 years old, not 12! If the memory of the bloody 1969 racial riots WAS strong in Malaysia, it is because the BN government wanted it that way, they deliberately kept it that way and milked it for as long as they could.

They encouraged the rakyat to remain fearful and mystified because they know that in making the facts known, they will not be able to hold it over the rakyat any more.

I grew up in the midst of the "riots" and whilst I remember them and I know of families who have lost family members, the fear lingered only for as long as the facts behind them remained unknown.

Now that the mystery has been removed, a lot of that fear is gone and I'm better able to relate to and learn from it - you fear the unknown, you learn to deal with the known.

The need to preserve peace between the races commonly invoked by the government? It is the government that is driving the wedge between the races.

I spent my childhood under a government whom, I think, really had the good of the nation at heart, under leaders who really did love us, and the country, in a way.

I grew up in the era where we - my Malay, Indian and Chinese friends - were truly friends and we did things together, we lived together, we played together, we ran the hills together, we snatched at fallen durians together, we ate together, albeit from our different plates because we knew enough about each other to be aware of and respect our differences, and we were not pre-occupied with looking for these but rather our commonalities and most of all, we did not spend the days tottering at the edge of suspicion and always trying to second-guess each other.

The country must survive? Aren't BN getting a little presumptuous here? This has nothing to do with the survival of the country but everything to do with the survival of BN and the BN is NOT the country!

The country will survive, there will be life after BN - probably a better one than what we have now and if we don't give it a go, we would never know, would we?