Malaysiakini

Why choose 'mediocracy' over meritocracy?

YOURSAY 'Giving the bumiputera more help in education and establishing a meritocratic education system is not mutually exclusive.'

'Meritocracy in education only helps Chinese'


your sayPemerhati: It is surprising to hear racists like former Universiti Teknologi Mara (UiTM) deputy chancellor Ibrahim Abu Shah and Zainal Kling, who heads the history, heritage and socio-culture cluster in the National Professors Council, claim that currently there is a meritocracy system.

In fact, the system came to an end a long time ago when the easy non-standardised Matrikulasi system was introduced to let sub-standard bumiputera students enter the public universities through the back door.

That system is still in place and so currently there is no meritocracy system. Previous to that the tough standardised STPM (Sijil Tinggi Persekolahan Malaysia) examination was used for entry to universities for all students.

Even then there was a lot of hanky panky as some good students found that their STPM exam results were much worse than those of some very weak students in their class.

To overcome this constant ‘gerrymandering' of results the Umno-oriented racist administrators came up with the Matrikulasi idea.

Most people know this and thus view all Malay graduates and professionals with suspicion and this is very unfair to the many Malays of high calibre. All this is entirely due to Umno's racism.

GoodToBeMalaysian: Here we go again. Let's not allow such dim-witted gibberish throw us off the track from an enlightened future as one people.

We're not alone in this world. As an open economy, we compete with the best in the world. So don't kid ourselves.

We must press on with meritocracy and produce the best Malaysians who happen to be Malay, Indian, Kadazan, Iban, Dayak, Chinese, etc. Competition brings out the best in all of us. It's healthy.

At the same time we must pull those less capable along, irrespective of race, by introducing free or affordable tuition centres, counselling, financial aid, technical schools, etc, to help them compete at the top.

Those who are excellent, we train them to be world beaters. Those who are capable, we train them to be excellent, and those who are incapable, we train them to be very capable. Everyone plays a God-given role.

Together, let us build a confident Malaysian society. The defeatist attitude advocated here is an insult to accomplished Malays like PKR director of strategy Rafizi Ramli and former premier Dr Mahathir Mohamad.

SpongeBob: Since independence our Malay brothers and sisters have been only given fish to eat but never taught how to fish.

Did the Umno-led BN government ever teach them how to fish so that they too can compete with other students?

Fifty-six years since independence and we are still harping on the same issue. This just clearly shows that the Umno-led BN government has failed miserably.

ABU_sed!!: Why can't you get it? Giving bumiputera more help in education and establishing a meritocratic education system is not mutually exclusive.

Multi Racial: I fully agree with this proposal. Fifa should restructure all football tournaments so that there is a World Cup for the weak.

The reason is simple; Europeans and Latin Americans are just too good. But the prize money should be the same.

Wow... this ‘abolish meritocracy' suggestion came from a former deputy chancellor. How did he manage to get that position in the first place?

I can understand if someone like him spoke up for the rural people regardless of race, who are disadvantaged in term of facilities, infrastructure and quality teachers.

How can Ibrahim compare poor non-Malays living in rural areas to rich students living in cities?

Prmaju: If you are scared of competing with Chinese in Malaysia, how are you going to compete with the Chinese from China? How are you going to compete with the rest of the world?

Stay under the coconut shell, give the students all As and scholarships. When they graduate and they can't get jobs, give them RM500 for retraining, and then absorb them into civil service.

That should solve all your problems.

Nil: Meritocracy in the education system? I thought ‘mediocracy' rules?

Anak JB: To quote a famous Malay saying, "A frog under a coconut shell". We are now living in a globalised world where we are not only competing against the Chinese, but the best in the world.

Time and tide wait for no man and as long as these so-called Malay educationists preach the message of fear and inculcate a siege mentality, the inferiority complex will remain and will move the Malay race backward instead of forward.

Ren Ai: To the educationists I say: Truth hurts. Deceit destroys. Take the bull by the horns and aim for pride and not dominance.

It is not too late for the community to take all steps to excel and compete. Your proposal is a poor reflection of what you stand for as educationists.

JustAMalaysian: I went to a Malay primary school in the 50s. In one Malay comprehension textbook, there was an article entitled ‘Buat Sendiri'.

In the article or essay, the main character, a Malay pupil, woke up late for school one day. In his rush to get to school in time, he asked his mother to help him pack his school bag, get his shoes ready, etc.

His mother refused and instead told him in no uncertain terms to do all those things himself. Her noble intention was to instil discipline and spirit of self-reliance in her young son. The moral of the story - excel on your own.

Why can't today's so-called Malay intellectuals be like the author of the said essay? Reviewing meritocracy policy only offers short-term gain but does not help the Malay race in the long run.

The Malay race is not inferior to the Chinese or the Indians. In my secondary school, there were many excellent Malay students and today I still hold them in awe because they are intelligent.

Educationists have unwittingly insulted Malay students


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