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Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Times when I am ashamed to be a chinese. -不管别人瓦上霜-

The title, I took from another person's post.

Cuz, reading it I sorta have a wake-up call... to see the uglies among the "yellow" people.

Indeed, the majority of us 自扫门前雪 . From what I see, most chinese will stop at the scene of an accident. But the sad thing is , it is only to oogle and to scout for the car number plate... and proceed to the empat ekor centre next.

Urbanites especially live with this attitude... being non-plussed, non-committal, practically being 'not-there'... just ask anyone staying in condominiums. Despite staying in my lot for 4 months I have yet to see the neighbour opposite me smile at me. Despite my many attempts at catching their attention. Often appearing extremely ridiculous as I prolong my entry time just to smile at them. To no avail. And yes they are chinese.

It makes me pine for the kampung life where everyone knows everyone and where
"ayam bertelur sebiji riuh sekampung" Because your problem is my problem and they will stick up for each other no matter for kenduri, gotong-royong or what not. This unity is so evident that I once heard comments from a driver

"If you bang anyone in a kampung, do not stop to help. Run for your life- before you know it the whole kampung will surround you".

My dad once experienced this. A malay boy peddling goods on his bicycle suddenly lost his balance while crossing the road and my dad stopped a few metres away just in time. Despite that a few kampung folk came round and knock on his driver side window and asked whether an accident happened. Really, It takes guts and nerves of steel to attempt a kidnap or robbery in a close knit community such as this.

anyway, I shall give way to the post, taken from http://antithesis2.net/?p=676

The row of houses where I live has seen, over the past 3 months:

* Car vandalism
* Snatch theft
* Attempted kidnapping

I’m not sure how to describe the place I live. It wouldn’t be referred to as particularly affluent, I think. But what I do know, is that the area just East, 40 seconds walking distance from my front gate, is a playground which is a popular mat rempit hang out, and behind that, is SLUM. We have a Neighbourhood Watch (”NW”), and it has tried to be active. Put up speed bumps, arrange for a couple of security guards, and so on. But it’s hard to get everyone involved.

Late last night, we were awakened by an insistent doorbell ring. Constantly, for 30 seconds. As if someone was really trying to tell us something. I leapt out of bed.

When I peeped out the window, I saw was my neighbour, a middle aged, but beautiful lady, of mixed Malay-Chinese descent. She was clad in a black flowing batik dress, clearly her sleeping clothes. She walked briskly up and down a row of about 7 teenage boys, frantically gesturing at my father’s Mercedes. Her 24 year old daughter walked up and down the road, furiously.

I alerted my father, and he demanded his glasses. He also asked my mother if she could go in his place, and grumbled that he would be far more comfortable in bed, as it wasn’t his car anyway. Well, guess what? It was. Ian went out the door halfway, but realized he was wearing The Holiest Shirt and went back in to change. Ian and my dad reached outside at the same time. They took 5 minutes.

When we reached outside, there were only a few other residents. The beautiful lady’s entire family (herself, husband, son and two daughter) and the old Reverend and his wife. My father (the Treasurer of the NW) had just arrived. The Chairman of the NW was nowhere to be seen, even though it had taken place outside his own house.

I am upset, that my father (who is a fairly big man, only 2 inches short of 6″) asked my mother, his wife, a tiny lady who is only 5″, to go in his place.

I am upset, that my dad, and to an extent, Ian, take 5 minutes to get ready for an emergency. It should be 5 seconds. What will we do in a real emergency?

I am upset, that an old Reverend and 2 women were left to call the police, scream at the boys, and round them up.

I am upset, that our row of houses are occupied 80% by Chinese. Only 15% of them were seen that night. The Indians’ and the Punjabs’ entire families arrived on the scene. It was the Malay family who called the cops and furiously went to round up the boys.

When the attempted kidnapping and the snatch theft occured, the Indian family came running out with baseball bats. The Punjabs were there immediately. The 19 year old Malay girl, in her furor, even chased the snatch thieves. Of course, everyone was worried sick during her 10 minutes disappearance. But it shows how brave she is. I don’t care, you can call it stupidity or whatever. But to an extent, I admire that kind of bravery.

A small, very small, percentage of Chinese people care about society. As a result, we are not adequately represented in the police force, army or politics. Fine, we have businessmen. And perhaps, for every 100,000 businessmen, there may be one policeman, or politician.

But there is an unquantifiable value to that one policeman or politician, and that is something, perhaps, that we have to think about.

end of post.

Hopefully we will learn to be more friendly and be real neighbours for a change. We are in need of a fresh injection of -Spirit of Muhibbah-.


  1. ah..a nuffnanger now eh? got here from the post I am ashamed to be a Chinese in Innit. :P

  2. oh... adsense wasn't doing much ma... hahaha
    sorry noticed late!



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