My National Day as a Singaporean Malay

Race, Community, Minority, Position, Singaporean

In my country, I am respected as a minority, not persecuted. In my own native language, millions of Singaporeans joined together to sing the National Anthem, and I couldn’t help but feel proud of myself.

sgmatters.com my national day as a singaporean malay my national day as a singaporean malay
Credit: NDP

Being a Singaporean Malay born, raised, and living here, I have never felt my loyalty questioned.

Some individuals’ constant negativity and lack of moral compass on the issue of minority discrimination makes me saddened and disturbed. With the new norm, I had hoped that mature, constructive discussions would prevail to resolve challenges. It is debilitating and shortsighted to make statements coated in hate, innuendos, and resentment with the intent of creating discord (where none exists) for a misguided personal agenda.

Falsely claiming that Malays are being discriminated against is an example of fear mongering at its worst. Our community has thrived on equal footing, not because we have a privileged position in society as an indigenous race, but because of our own grit, determination, hard work, and strength.

Nevertheless, I acknowledge that for some individuals, discrimination is real. The society, however, calls out those who discriminate blatantly against others based on their race or religion. It is important to let the law take its course when the law has been crossed and not advocate vigilante justice

Laws help determine if penal or community-based sentencing is best. We should never allow anyone to take the law into their own hands in sensitive matters like race and religion. 

This is our hard-won system of inter-racial and inter-religious peace. It is difficult to put the 1960s behind us, but they must not be forgotten.

[irp posts="1340" name="Is the special position of Malays being questioned, asks Sembang Masyarakat"]

When we look at other governments and how they deal with minorities, I am filled with gratitude for being born and raised here as multiculturalism and multiracialism are not simply rhetorical or political slogans, but rather the core foundations of our government.

  1. Singaporean Malays may be a minority in numbers, but not in status. We are all equal as Singaporeans, regardless of race, language, or religion, and there is no pretence to that nor to the policies implemented.

  2. Individual cases of discrimination do not represent the whole nation. Rather than focusing on the negative emotions of perceived hypocrisy and double standards, I chose to see the bigger picture.

  3. We as a community would not allow my race to be used as a convenient tool to accomplish a political goal. The policies implemented to date by the government have allowed minorities to speak out more, not impede them.

  4. While I do not need to be pacified into having my community statistics available for all military positions, I am very proud when their successes are highlighted, which is enough to assure me that I have not been denied the opportunity to hold key sensitive positions because of my race.

  5. In response, I ask Singaporeans not to think my race is unreasonable or self-pitying. That’s not the case. Our goal is to contribute to the progress of Singapore without being granted any special position or treated differently.

The fact is, I don’t need someone who feeds on negativity to represent the community. 

He does not represent me, nor does he represent the community. When there are problems, we do not complain about them. We seek out a solution. And we will pitch in together with everyone who has succeeded in Singapore. 

This is what we define as a Community of Success .

In the long run, we shape our lives, and we shape ourselves. The process never ends until we die. And the choices we make are ultimately our own responsibility.

Eleanor Roosevelt

Disclaimer:
The opinions expressed in this publication are those of the authors. They do not purport to reflect the opinions or views of our team or its members.

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