Happy Merdeka 2012

Malaysia turned 55 today, so I decided it was my duty to sleep in. Despite clocking in at 3am this morning, I couldn't sleep after 10am and went out with the family for brunch in Pudu. I've wanted to take my family to the Fatt Kee store opposite Pudu Plaza for duck and chicken rice. The store opens around 11.30am; don't be mistaken with the other chicken rice store (that opens earlier) in the shoplot, Fatt Kee's store is on the pavement. While waiting for the workers to set up the store, I ordered some yao char kuay fresh from the wok! :)
We ordered half roasted chicken and some duck. Apparently the white rice wasn't ready so we opted for the oily rice. There are various sauces available for your consumption: soy sauce, chilli and ginger. We also ordered peanut soup and salted vegetable. Needless to say, everyone came home with a full tummy and I slept the entire afternoon for the 1st time in a long time. Must be the rice! 
Okay done with the food talk, on to MERDEKA! I feel that although we've come a long way since Tunku's chants of Merdeka resonated in Dataran Merdeka 55 yrs ago, we've a lot of work to do to make our country a better place:

1) Make Malaysia safe
- there's an increase in crime: snatch theft, road bullies, drive-by shootings; house robberies and a slew of child kidnappings are causing tension and fear in neighborhoods. What drives the desperation of these perpetrators? What can we do to make sure our homes and our families are safe? A Malaysian must be more wary these days; even the authorities are tainted by corruption and poor public relations: I've had an experience where the traffic cop cussed down me and my friend while driving back from KL. 
2) Create a humble Malaysia
- we take many things for granted: are we aware of how important multi-racial harmony is? Are we aware that of the peace that's so precious when you think about war-struck and conflict-ridden countries? Seems like everyone's in a mad rush for money money money that they forget about being grateful for access to education, infrastructure, job opportunities; take the example of fresh grads expecting a high starting salary despite employers complaining that they lack fluency in English and ambition. 
3) Road-savvy Malaysians are rare
- foreign tourists and expats know that in Malaysia, road rules are not enforced properly and easily broken. Lack of enforcement and poor etiquette earned Malaysia a poor 33 out of 35 countries rated in a rudeness survey. Breaking the red light, ignoring the pedestrians, not using the indicator light while changing lanes are some of the small grouses; bigger pains are road rage and hit-and-run incidents. Malaysians can buy their licenses so not all Malaysians are legally safe drivers. 
4) Maturity is still lacking
- despite being relatively liberal, Malaysians are still mum about certain issues like the LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender) community, religion conversion, and single parenthood among others. Peaceful rallies are apparently harmful and open forums are BEYOND our comprehension. In a world that's increasingly globalized, we're inevitably exposed to the development of these issues abroad and we're bound to question the norms currently set in place. It's a balance between managing the sensitivities of various communities and campaigning equal rights for all Malaysian citizens regardless of their sexual orientation, race, and religion. 
5) Be proud to be Malaysian
- the best example of this is during the badminton men singles final at Olympics London 2012. It was a 3 match battle between Malaysian no 1 Datuk Lee Chong Wei and China superstar Lin Dan. It was a replay of the final in Beijing 2008 where Datuk LCW lost despite holding 2 match points to gold. Datuk LCW recently recovered from a shoulder injury and hard-fought his way to the final. Malaysians all over were cheering our champion and many cried when we lost. The deluge of emotions the following day was so inspiring: the 1st thing Datuk LCW told Malaysia was "sorry". Despite the loss, he is still our hero because he wanted to bring home the 1st Olympic gold for our country. Same goes to our diving darling Pandelela Rinong, the 1st Malaysian female Olympian who brought home a bronze! This is the kind of perseverance we need; we can only be glorious if we WANT that glory for Malaysia. 

I could nitpick more but I'm sleepy and I believe that Malaysians everywhere have a vested interest to join forces together and make our country a better home for all. Happy Independence Day, Malaysia. May all of our dreams come true :)

1 comment:

Mr Lonely said...

Happy Merdeka day~ =)

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