Race and Malaysia
What is 1 Malaysia? - Race and Malaysia introduction?? The slogan ‘1 Malaysia’ is designed by Prime Minister Mohd Najib Tun Razak. The purpose of 1 Malaysia says it all in the slogan, to unite all Malaysians as 1 and not separated into our own racial groups. -Why do we need racial harmony? For starters, who wants to live in a country full of racism? It’s not like we chose to be the colour we are, to be in the family we’re in. Imagine bringing up that Indian boy in the picture in a Chinese family, that boy would probably be fluent in Mandarin, celebrate Chinese New Year, use chopsticks and eat rice for lunch and dinner every day of the week. But he would still be him, he would still have the same thoughts, the same feelings, the same doubts, the same hopes and dreams he would have if he was brought up in an Indian family. Why the big fuss about being a different race? Set aside our very different cultures and backgrounds, we are all still Malaysians. We are all Malaysians before we are Malay, Chinese, Indian, Sarawakian or Sabahan. -How can we apply ‘1 Malaysia’ into our lives? We can start by understanding the cultures that we have in Malaysia. Through understanding, we will learn to respect their actions and know why they do what they do. Then only can we accept them as they are. Next, our family has to support this concept with us too. Our parents need to teach us and our siblings the importance of racial harmony and the values we need to have. Following that, we should all have a good relationship with our neighbours. Our neighbourhood is filled with people of different races and religions, if we can make friends with them, we can accept everybody in this country. Schools are said to be a student’s second home, this is why the education system needs to encourage 1
Malaysia as much as our parents need to. Teachers need to practice this concept and treat all students equally. The government can set up more schools like Wawasan in USJ15, where they have a Kebangsaan school, a Tamil school and a Chinese school in the same compound. The students will be able to learn about their own language and culture and at the same time learn about and live with the cultures of others. On the first week of every month, all the schools have a combined assembly. They have Sports Day together and have recess in the same canteen. I am a product of the Wawasan School in USJ15, and when I stepped into secondary school, I didn’t find difficulty fitting in with the wide range of people, because I have been brought up in an environment where there aren’t only people of my own race. -We all want to feel a sense of belonging to something, the concept of 1 Malaysia can do that. 1 Malaysia is not only about racial harmony, 1 Malaysia is watching football at the mamak stores, sitting at the comfort of our own homes while cheering for Lee Chong Wei and Pandelela in this year’s Olympics, the ‘la’s’ and the ‘ma’s’, the ‘manglish’. It’s the teh tarik man, the char kway teow uncle, the nasi lemak lady. 1 Malaysia is a combination of all our different cultures into our very own unique Malaysian culture. It’s something all of us do, something all of us have; it’s what makes us Malaysian.
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