Sabtu, 17 April 2010

Social contract

1. I wonder who is hijacking "social contract".

2. In this brave new world people write about things with authority but without knowing anything or doing proper research.

3. True the constitution does not mention "Malay rights" but obviously the mention of the special position of the Malays implies recognition of certain positions and privileges that they hold. The leaders of the time, the Tunku, Tun Razak, Tun Sambanthan and Tun Tan Siew Sin understood the "special position" of the Malays as the indigenous people of Tanah Melayu, the "Malay Land".

4. For this recognition by the non-Malay leaders, something had to be done to reciprocate their acceptance. The Tunku agreed to waive the conditions for becoming citizens so that one million non-Malays could become citizens with all the citizenship rights, ignoring the required qualifying conditions.

5. The Malays did not fight against the Malayan Union only to give up all that they had gained. But their leaders were realistic enough to have a quid pro quo arrangement. Does anyone seriously think that the Malay leaders would reduce their majority from 80% in the 1955 elections to less than 60% after the gift of citizenship to unqualified citizens? Only the weak minded would think so.

6. Social contracts are almost never written contracts with everyone signing at the bottom. It is usually an understanding based on trust. It is a measure of Malay trust of the non-Malays that they were prepared to give up what they had gained in the fight against the Malayan Union in order to accommodate even those whose loyalty to the country was not proven.

7. The Malays hate turmoil. They prefer accommodation. Had they been like some other indigenous people, they would have insisted on their rights even if they had to be violent and to wait a longer period.

8. We should appreciate the wisdom of the leaders of the Malays, the Chinese and the Indians who laid the foundation of inter-racial cooperation for their beloved country. Far too many colonies of the West gained independence only to experience turmoil and instability and actual regression. The colonial powers had predicted that Malaysia with its multiracial population and numerous ethnic disparities and differences would also fail. But we haven't. And we haven't because our founding fathers understood the situation and devised wise solutions.

9. In making use of the provision for the "special positions" of the Malays, the post-1969 leaders came up with affirmative actions. These are undoubtedly "crutches" and crutches should be discarded as soon as strength is gained. Only the selfish would advocate throwing away the crutches of others simply because they have already made good use of their own.

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