The Vicious Cycle of Racism – Are We The Inheritors?

BY RUBY GEGE

Life is but a cycle. Events which occurred yesterday would inevitably lead to consequences to be felt today or tomorrow. Mistakes and wrongdoings would bring about repercussions, same goes to good deeds and kindness. It is somehow similar to the concept of karma. What goes around, comes around.

Malaysia is a beautiful country. I love it so much. I am somehow disappointed at times of how my country seems to be lacking in a national identity but perhaps that is what is great about the country. Why impose on yourself a national identity when you can be a proud Malaysian yet are allowed to define who you want to be? In Malaysia, I am a woman, a feminist, a daughter, a sister, a crazy friend, a student, an aspiring writer, a novice activist, a Malay, a Kelantanese, an agressive driver and a caffeine addict. I am many things. I aspire to be many great things in the future. And I am constantly thankful that I am able to assert myself in whatever form that I choose.

But yes, there’s this thing that has been bothering me for quite some time now. This issue of racism. I have yet to go through a critical study course in the matter to fully understand the theoretical and practical nature of racism. But based on my limited reading, I can sense that in Malaysia, racism has and will always be a big thing. Wherever I go…. people will claim that they are being discriminated upon. When I go to Venue X, I will meet people who claims that the Y people are discriminating against them. When I go to Venue Y, I will meet people who claims that the X people are discriminating against them. Even worse, when I go to Venue Z – really, the ones who have been marginalized and oppressed for years – they have been discriminated against by the X people and the Y people as well.

So many discrimination. So many racism. People X control this sector. That’s why it’s important for People Y to control this sector. People Y discriminate against People X, that is why People X must be supreme in this sector. That is why People X must not be too kind to People Y. People Y did this, People X did that…

And one day, I woke up only to find that I, along with other people of my generations, are inheriting this sort of situation. This form of life. We are the inheritors to this cycle. This form of violence against each other. We have no choice. For we are born either amongst the Y people or the X people or the Z people. Whether we like it or not, we belong to a certain alphabet. Defending our alphabet is deemed a must. For we are part of the community since we were born. The cycle turns… and to survive it is to play the game and play it well. Protect and be protected. Defend and be defended.

But what if I say I don’t want to be People Y or People X or People Z? What if I just want to be me and make friends with whoever I meet? So long as they are kind, cool and laugh at my jokes, I am a happy enough woman. People might say I’m Z or X or Y. People can be wrong. Maybe, based on my personality, I am more of an R. Maybe, I don’t want to inherit the cycle of racism. Can I be an R? Can I be a person I am not supposed to be? Can I not do what is expected of me? Can I, instead of assisting in turning the cycle, chose to take the bus instead with my friends?

Maybe I don’t want to live in fear and paranoia. Maybe I want to evaluate people not based on their race or religion but their personalities and kindness. Maybe I don’t want to discriminate against them just because their elders discriminated against my elders. Even if they chose to discriminate me, should I follow their example and judge people based on their races as well? If I discriminate against them today, tomorrow their children will discriminate against my children and the cycle goes on and on.

When will the cycle stop, then? Who will start to work on stopping the cycle? Or are the future generations damned to inherit a far vicious cycle we are in now?

Do I want my children to live like that? Certainly not. I want my children to live freely, with respect to other people who respect them. I want them to see people through the optimistic lens – that all human shall be judged by their actions, not who their parents are or where they come from.

Maybe I’m wrong. Maybe I’m stupid of being too optimistic. But then, maybe I’d rather die a stupid optimistic person in harmony with my own conviction than a smart intelligent powerful paranoid person. Death in the category of the former seems more appealing to me anyway. I may not know the truth or whatever is true out there. But I think for every person, there is their own truth – the meaning of their existence and the way they want to live their lives. Even if I may betray other people’s truth, the least I can do in my life is to be loyal to my own truth.

Hello people. My name is Ruby and I love all sorts of people, may they be a Y, X or Z or any other.

Now, let’s end this very serious opinion piece on a goofy note… Presenting to you a very unappealing image of myself…

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Now off to watch the latest episode of Castle!

MISSING MALAYSIA FLIGHT MH 370

By the Gorgeous Palah Chingu

Never in a million years that i imagine Malaysia would be in the spotlight because of the missing flight tragedy. It is so sudden and shocking. i for once still could not recover from the shock that i just got back from Hong Kong on the same day the news reported of missing MAS FLIGHT MH 370.

There are various of speculations saying it happened due to plane hijacking, possible terrorism activity, engine failures and so many more. malaysia already deploy their search and rescue mission along with the assistance from China,Vietnam and other countries. Lets just hope and pray they managed to find something that could answer what really happened to MALAYSIA MAS FLIGHT MH 370. As a fellow human being and malaysian, i pray that all the family members of this tragedy could get a closure and move on with their life.

I only write a short post regarding this tragedy. You guys can read more on the BBC news, Washington Post, China Daily, Al-jazeera and so on. You guys can also google about the malaysia missing flight.

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For the love of Nature

By The Gorgeous Palah Chingu

Mount Santubong ;)
Mount Santubong 😉

To be honest, I’ve always like watching documentary (about nature) at the very young age.  Documentary for me is like a book with animated pictures.  Every single thing in it will be described and to those who watch it; you will gain something from it (in my case, I gain knowledge). When I was young, I find it fascinating that there is a voice over in every single documentary to describe what they are trying to capture. It does not matter what are the topics from the weather, animals, science, and human nature and so on. They are communicating with the people who watched it using graphics, picture, video, and series of interviews and even using role play clip. Just so you know, I am a normal kid, I enjoyed cartoon and playing with my friend on a daily basis. However, on Friday or Sunday’s night at 9 pm (I can’t recalled the exact day), I sat still and my eyes were fixated on the TV as my local channel broadcasted a new episode of National Geographic.

My mother was pretty strict when it comes to what I can or cannot watch on television. Thus, I ended up having to watch ‘National Geographic’ or no television at all. I love National Geographic back then and still loving it now. How they filming shark in the underwater, elephant out in open in some part in Africa or even zebra running across the field, it was like opening a new world to me. When I watched it back then, I was always wondering how the hell they could do that.  To swim so near at the great white shark, to film in the harsh cold weather at the arctic and Antarctica just to get a glimpse of polar bear or narwhale and to cover on the culture of how mouse and human can live side by side in one of the temple in India, It was like an orgasm explosion of knowledge to know the stories and the experiences behind it. That was how I found I have an avid interest with anything on regards of nature, animals, flora and fauna. Back then, to pursue a career as zoologist is quite uncommon in Malaysia. I am not sure how many universities in my country that offers that course. I always wonder would it make any difference if I took zoologist as my career path?*sudden regret

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the scenery at cultural village in Sarawak is breathtaking. *please ignore the annoying photographer on my right.

I was not environmentalist back then. I simply enjoyed flora and fauna. The calmness I get when I take a deep breath and listened to the sound of flowing river, The serenity I felt when I stand near the beach as the sea breeze pass by myself and even the sound of cicada in the forest could brought tranquility within me. I was that kind of person. That was the main reason I joined The Scouts Association of Malaysia. However, the reason I wanted to make myself a committed environmentalist was the effect of global warming is overwhelming right now. The abnormality of weather, the sudden emergence of natural disaster and catastrophic on certain countries and even the rapidness of ice melting on south and North Pole; How do we explained all of the occurrences that visited upon us? Do we have another earth that we can live so we don’t have to be considerate and try to undo some of malady that greedy multinational corporation brought onto the beautiful earth of ours?

I didn’t join in any particular organization that involves the environmentalism. However, that doesn’t mean I can’t contribute to the effort to save the earth. In my opinion, we don’t have to go big to show that we care. Initially we can begin with the small act. The small act like not throwing our thrash everywhere can contribute to one step in saving the earth.  Hold on to it until we found the nearby dustbin. What we did even it was considered very small; it did have an effect on our environment. We can start by reusing two sides of paper by now (especially for student), if one sides of the paper has been used and we no longer required it, don’t throw it. Keep it somewhere near us as when we might need to print or write something , that paper may cut us a cost and in the same time save the trees as well. We can try to reuse and recycle at home. We can be creative if we put our efforts and good intention in it.

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taken by me 🙂