Saturday, May 1, 2010

Response to ‘Tak Boleh Tahan on his/her comment on the article ‘ Certain ethnic groups marginalised by government policies, UN expert says’ in TOC

Certain ethnic groups marginalised by government policies, UN expert says

Tak Boleh Tahan:

“Some people keep saying they are marginalised because they are the minority. But the majority are the ones who are really marginalised. For instance, why are more and more food stuffs in Singapore halal? Halal food is for Muslims. Why should Muslims force halal food upon non-Muslims??? That is AGAINST our faiths and basic human rights! Will the Muslims not be angered if more and more food stuffs in Singapore become Christianised, Buddhistised, Hinduised, Jewishised, etc.?”

I agree that supermarkets, food outlets etc. should always ensure there is enough supply of halal food for Muslims, but can anyone still find non-halal foods in supermarkets these days? All the fresh produce, packaged foods and even drinks! are now halal. The only thing that is not halal is pork, and even that may disappear here one day because it is not halal.”

Oh dear, how can this be an argument? Before you start using such argument, find out about what ‘halal’ food means, else you are just making a mockery of yourself. How can non-muslims be ‘forced upon’ halal food? In fact, there are more non halal food options available in this country than halal food. Just visit any food outlet or hawker centre and prove otherwise. There are many things one can cite against the majority chinese. For example, how would non-chinese feel when some chinese burn incense paper thus polluting the air and affecting those living around? In fact, it is definitely a health hazard for those who are living within close proximity where the burning occurs, let alone having all those ashes flying around the public area and even into houses.

Tak Boleh Tahan:

“Some posters here claim that some people bring in discussion of Malaysia’s bumiputra policies because the latter refuse to face racist issues in Singapore. Where is the correlation? Aren’t those posters the ones who refuse to face the facts themselves? In fact, Singapore’s special treatment of any particular race is itself racist.”

‘Affirmative action’ is a policy which the state can adopt to help elevate the disadvantaged position of a particular race/ community hence providing a more level playing field for all within the society. Similarly, would you term policies which help the poor and needy ‘racist’? Both policies have the same objective in helping those who are disadvantaged within the society.

Tak Boleh Tahan:

“As for job criteria, if a job requires you to work with a lot of Malays in another country, you need to speak and write good Malay. If an employer states so in their job advertisement, it is not racist. But if a job requires you to work with a lot of Chinese or Indians in another country, and an employer states so in their job ad, it is suddenly racist. Isn’t such an attitude itself racist?”

Any multi-racial society/ country, be it Malaysia or Singapore which adopts (covertly or overtly) such practice would be deemed discriminatory. Besides, the working language and the first language taught in schools for all here is English. Therefore, there is no sound justification for such practice at all and should therefore be prohibited. Singaporeans of different races should at least learn to speak the common language (English) at the basic level. There should not be any preferential treatment for employment base on one’s ability to speak a particular language other than English and one’s ethnicity.

Tak Boleh Tahan:

“When all is said and done, it all boils down to one thing. If anyone is unhappy in Singapore because they feel they are marginalised, whether they are the majority or minority, they are free to leave. Migration is the in thing now if you have the means. One less person frees up more precious resources for the rest of us.”

As much as one has the right to leave a country, one also has the right to stay and fight for equal and fair treatment. Making such a statement above, are you suggesting that the marginalised should accept all forms of inequalities they suffer and keep mum about it or else leave the country? If the country’s first generation population took that approach during British occupation, Singapore could still be under the former’s rule. Yes, maybe then speaking English would be preferred; not mandarin. ; )

1 comment:

  1. Yeah you got a point Simy! Many a times that I have known minorities going for interviews as sales people. Abruptly are told by the bosses, that they are in need of Mandarin Speaking Salespeople only. As majority of the people here are Chinese and speak Mandarin.
    I just could not understand this logic, unless majority of the people purchasing here are only China Citizens.Understandably, who can only speak Mandarin and feel the people of the world should only speak Mandarin and no other languages. Well what about our Singapore Chinese, who after having schooled here in the English Language from Kindergarten to University? In working life do these people experience memory loss in the English Language and able to remember only Mandarin? Or perhaps, all the Singaporeans could have migrated!


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