LETTER

Of course I love my country...

John Lee

Published
Modified 6 Feb 2008, 7:26 am

I refer to the Malaysiakini report Anwar: Bumi policies affect investments .

I consider myself lucky that I have traveled to almost all the Asean countries and have managed to observe, albeit shallowly, the socio-political structures of our neighbouring countries.

I identify myself as a Malaysian Chinese – the ‘Malaysian’ is an adjective and the ‘Chinese’ is the noun. This is inevitable in Malaysia because the country's laws and policies are based on racial and religious lines.

I am part of the fourth generation of Hua Ren – the overseas Chinese. The Hua Ren are noticeable in every country – Indonesia, Thailand, the Philippines, Vietnam and, of course, Singapore.

The Malaysian Chinese are unique in the sense that we continue to carry our ancestors' name without alteration, unlike all of our neighbours, except for Singapore. We are also unique in that, unlike our neighbors, we choose to practice faiths - Buddhism, Taoism, and Christianity - different from the majority race.

None of our neighbours have decided to endorse apartheid, er sorry, affirmative action or bumiputera policies. They seem to be doing well, namely Thailand and Vietnam. In fact, there is a special term for overseas Vietnamese returning home after the war with their fortunes – the Viet Kieu.

I am counting the years before Vietnam overtakes Malaysia as an economic powerhouse. I should know a bit better because in my profession, I assist Malaysian businesses in setting up shop there.

I was born in Malaysia. My identification card says I am a citizen. However, I am classified as a non-bumiputera. My religion is kafir . My economic value is low in my own country because I am a non-bumiputera and a non-Muslim. Yet my economic value is high overseas.

Chinese Malaysian professionals are highly sought after. Malaysian accountants find success in China, London and Australia because they are multi-lingual and very hard working. Being cheaper and less arrogant than Singaporeans is another plus point. The ability to converse in English and Mandarin is highly prized by multinational corporations in China.

Heck, half of all Chinese Malaysian professionals are actually future Singaporean citizens.

Even in the Middle East, the Chinese Malaysians are sought after to support the Islamic banking industry because of their hard work and ability to assimilate easily. The Middle Eastern people in the finance industry don't discriminate against you, but then your women had better wear the burqa and hide in their homes.

In then end, the Chinese Malaysian will continue to actively seek migration, just as their forefathers did. They will accumulate the necessary skills and talents, and then use their entrepreneurial mindset and willingness to work hard and move on once Malaysia becomes a barren place.

The oil will run dry here. The country will be carpeted with palm trees. Malays will overwhelmingly dominate the population. It will look like Indonesia. Then it will look like Pakistan. Finally, it will settle into an Afghanistan.

At last, the Malays will be able to proudly claim that they are no longer contesting for 30 percent of the economic pie. They will actually own 100 percent. I am not too sure of my personal future, as well as my children’s future, but I am not worried about the future of the Hua Ren.

In conclusion, do I love my country? Of course I do. I love my country as much as my country loves me.

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