Tuesday, 21 July 2015

Low Yat "Riots"

Sin Chew Jit Poh
15 July 2015


I am sure you heard about the big fight in Plaza Low Yat Bukit Bintang on Sunday.
As soon as it happened talk spread like wildfire that there was going to be racial riots. I suppose I can see how this kind of panic can occur. After all the two sides fighting one another were ostensibly of different ethnic groups. On one side there was the Chinese and on the other there was the Malays.
The initial fight in the early evening (over what exactly is unclear although a mobile phone was involved), seemed to be little more than rowdy youths trying to solve their problems through fighting. Things took a turn for the worrying when later that night a large group, reportedly two hundred strong, turned up at the Plaza causing more violence interspersed with racist language being used.
It was natural therefore to suspect the worse.
However, let’s look at things with a more objective eye. The group of Malays that appeared at Low Yat late Sunday night were reportedly from a group called Perkida. This is a so called NGO with very strong links to UMNO.
So far, so suspicious. But who are these people and what are their motivations. Are they really Malay supremacists? Well, yes, the language that they use surely points in that direction.
However research done on them and published in a book called “Misplaced Democracy” suggests that their primary interest is making money. Politically they will do whatever it takes to help them make more money. In other words, one would have to question the motives of their actions that night.
So, this being the case, apart from defending oneself if caught up in this sort of nonsense, it would be wise to take a breath first and really consider if racial tensions are so bad that there will be a huge outbreak of violence. Or if this episode is being driven by people with their own agendas which may have nothing to do with race but everything to do with power, influence and money.
If we overreact, then these people will get exactly what they want (whatever that might be). It is far wiser to think for a minute and question deeply, about the state of things. This country is facing serious problems and our people, regardless of race are facing serious hardships like unemployment and the rising cost of living. Hardships created by incompetent and perhaps corrupt governance.
Is it really in any of the ordinary people’s interest to be fighting and killing one another? I don’t think so. So let the thugs do their thing, while us ordinary Malaysians, look out for one another and make sure that we do not inadvertently serve their agenda.

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