An apparently absent minded nurse had filled in the MC of a patient assumed to be sick with the pox, with the word ‘chicken chop’ instead. News like these which ought to be back page fillers for gossip tabloids have instead become the topic of important public discussion.
I believe a factor which has weighed heavily in this matter is the attitude, or supposed attitude, of the so called “moderates”. I confess that I am not greatly moved by this. Whatever may be the attitude of the public to the moderate groups like G 25 as such, my view of them over the year has been that it has been steadily and relentlessly directed towards the weakening and the destruction of the links which bind Malaysians together. For example, the hegemony of Islam and the superiority of the Malay language.
They tell us we must be prepared to contemplate, in fact to welcome, the alteration and alienation of our towns and cities. Ah our English is poor, we must improve! They tell us there is no such thing as our own people and our country and our own language. Putting on par or even above the Malay language, the foreign tongue of our colonial oppressors. One wonders , that these were the sort of people who if they were at the Selangor Club at midnight on the 31st of August 1957, that they would have shed a tear of lament for the descent of the Union Jack rather than a cry of joy for Merdeka. Indeed there is, and I say it in no mean or arrogant or exclusive spirit. What I know is that we have an identity of our own, as we have a territory of our own, and that the instinct to preserve that identity, as to defend that territory, is one of the deepest and strongest implanted in mankind. I happen also to believe that the instinct is good and that its beneficent effects are not exhausted. In our time that identity has been threatened more than once. In the past it was threatened by violence and aggression from without, as seen by the end of the use of Jawi for the Latin Alphabet. It is now threatened from within by the foreseeable consequences of a massive but unpremeditated and fortunately, in substantial measure is none other than the liberal metropolitan elite.
They are stuck in their ivory towers. With their summer holidays in Paris, amidst their pathetic pretend accent and their foreign “QS 100 Top Universities in the World” degrees (as if that paper is a declaration of their intellectual superiority and not their pecuniary advantage which have led them to a good Pre-U course or even a Private School) they have become aloof and have forgot that we live in a nation where next to no one speaks received pronunciation nor writes the Queen’s English, in a nation where a sentence in daily conversation is a mixture of Malay, Tamil, English and a handful of Chinese dialects.
Yet one would expect a degree of sympathy for the nurse by the general public.
But no, the fickleness and haughtiness of the Malaysian public has already condemned this nurse as an intellectual inferior. Like the piped piper, the country club cardholding upper class have led the public to pronounce anathemas over people who make the odd grammar mistake. Such a pity.
Even more pitiful is the fact that our nation is in an economical, fiscal and political disaster, yet no one seems to care. The value of the Ringgit is falling faster than a deck of cards. Devaluation and harsh austerity measures are on the horizon. Goods and Service taxes have been levied. The pustules foaming from the years of corruption are on the verge of finally bursting, making the economy drown with its purulence. But hey, economics are not nearly as interesting to read and discuss about. Let’s make fun of people’s English instead. Or maybe, the complaint of the standard of English or lack of it is the work of these rich men themselves who want the attention of the lower classes to be diverted away from the real issues at hand.
It is like a personification of the dim witted proles in Orwell’s magnum opus, Nineteen Eighty Four. Content with being lorded over as long as they have some cheap and fickle form of entertainment ie. a blockbuster nationalistic film.
Like the novel, Big brother I am sure, is thoroughly amused.