Sin Chew Daily editor-in-chief Kuik Cheng Kang wrote an open letter to Mahathir which is viral. In it, Kuik lamented the ex-PM’s opposition to sekolah Cina.
The online English version of his letter has so far garnered more than 120,000 views.
Kuik’s letter is titled ‘Tun Dr Mahathir, you are wrong’.
In my opinion, it is the Sinchew eic who is incorrect.
Chinese were ‘wrong’ to trust Atuk
In his widely read letter, Kuik opens by saying “The name of [Mahathir’s] book offers one hope again”.
Kuik is wrong here. Even in the naming of his latest book, Mahathir has hijacked (“captured”) the key words associated with the opposition.
Mahathir’s newly released book is titled Capturing Hope: The Struggle Continues for A New Malaysia.
‘Hope’ and ‘New Malaysia’ are the unique-selling-propositions plastered on DAP’s snake oil bottle. Now with one deft stroke, the old doctor has muscled in the branding success of these two labels — hope/Harapan and Malaysia Baru.
So from the get-go, Kuik is wrong. Wrong in his misplaced optimism that “The name of the book offers one hope again”, wrong on the longterm political impact of GE14 and wrong on the future of vernacular education.
BELOW: Chinese sheeple listen to DAP evangelists “whispering Hope” (words seen on the white screen to Hannah Yeoh’s left)
2018: Chinese all excited for nothing
Next, Kuik says in his open letter to Mahathir that following GE14 “people were looking forward to a better nation” believing that “a new Malaysia was finally born”.
Wrong again. With Mahathir as the midwife, your 95 percent Chinese-conceived version of Malaysia Baru was congenitally defective at birth.
Kuik then goes on to say the “tainted” and corrupt BN (attributing this negative description of the Najib regime to Mahathir’s words) “was finally defeated”.
Well, temporarily defeated maybe. But not for long and for no longer than 22 months. The 95% pengundi Cina are clearly shortsighted to think BN could be knocked down and out.
Kuik writes: “The Chinese [more than the other races] was even more passionate and emotional, thinking that a new Malaysia had taken shape”.
Helen’s response: As a BN voter in 2013 and 2018, I say the more fool you, Mr Kuik.
Misguided Chinese excitement at the Harapan 2018 government only reflects on their poor judgment and weak ability to reason.
BELOW: So many were suckered by Mahathir’s DAP fanboys and fangirls into placing their big fat hope on Atuk
Fool you twice, fool you thrice
Kuik also writes: “The Chinese extended you [Mahathir] and the Pakatan Harapan strong support hoping that the country would be better under your helm the second time”.
Helen’s response: What a dumb move! You guys bought the DAP line – hook and sinker – that Atok sudah bertaubat. Duh.
Kuik then writes: “Generally, the Chinese felt that you would make use of the second chance to rectify the errors in the 22 years when you first became the Prime Minister.”
No doubt then that the Chinese including Mr Kuik were wrong in believing that Atuk would undo his past mistakes. The Chinese should know better.
After all, Mahathir had a long political career that is public knowledge. But rather than appraise his known track record critically, the 95 percent Chinese voters mindlessly bought into the church of new hope.
BELOW: How many Malaysians are aware that ‘Hope’ is a very popular name for evangelical churches?
DAP a party led by evangelical Christians
Kuik continues, “However, the Pakatan Harapan collapsed in less than 22 months. You [Mahathir] passed the blame to others …”.
Helen’s response: So Atuk deflected blame. Biasalah. He’s a politician what — a specie never admitting to any fault. And DAP likewise in rejecting any kind of blame too. Dua kali lima jer.
So far, what Sinchew editor-in-chief Kuik Cheng Kang has written only goes to show that he, and the rest of the Chinese who endorsed Mahathir as Harapan chairman and presumptive PM, had made the wrong call.
Somebody [Kuik] who has been so glaringly wrong only sounds unconvincing when he now tries to claim that another person [Mahathir] is wrong on various matters.
Mahathir was and is anti Chinese
And Kuik is still running on the wrong track, and this is sad because he and his newspaper have a huge audience and great influence.
He blames Mahathir for giving his “silent approval” to the Malay Dignity Congress.
Kuik is wrong once again. Not only was the Kongres Maruah tacitly approved by Mahathir, it was actually Atuk’s own brainchild. The event was organized to platform and expand on the message Mahathir himself already floated a month before.
The congress was held on 6 Oct 2019. Earlier on Sept 6, Mahathir wrote in Chedet as well as in his other social media (see his tweets above): “Dan orang asing pun membanjiri Negara kita. Tujuh juta orang asing masih berada di sini sekarang ini”.
Can Kuik make a guess as to whom Mahathir was referring to when he mentioned the ‘seven million foreigners’ that had flooded our country and who are still here with us now.
HINT: A few paragraphs earlier, Mahathir wrote: ”Orang Cina biasanya berhijrah ke Negara lain jika mereka nampak peluang mencari makan […] mereka datang dengan ramai ke Negeri-Negeri Melayu”.
Lost hope and dashed expectations
Kuik complains that Mahathir’s actions in 2018–2020 disappointed many PH supporters.
Today Kuik is saying that more than 90% of the Chinese PH voters are upset by Mahathir’s views – including his poking at our custom of using chopsticks – most recently expressed during the book launch.
Pada lazimnya orang akan jolok sarang tebuan dengan batang galah.
Yet it was so easy for Mahathir to rile up the Chinese and elicit their highly predictable knee-jerk reactions. Atuk did not even need a pole to stir the hornet’s nest — just a pair of chopsticks sufficed to do the trick.
Look. Exceptions don’t disprove the rule. Sure, not all Chinese are adept at using chopsticks. And some non Chinese are more skilful in using them than even many Chinese. And some foods are not eaten using our fingers, such as koay teow soup.
The contrary examples listed above, however, are merely nitpicking done in order to strawman Mahathir’s point. He was generalizing that it is customary for Chinese to eat with chopsticks and for Malays to eat with hand. Broadly speaking, Mahathir is on point.
All the ostensible rebuttals by Mahathir critics are as tiresome and pointless as their previous virtue signalling on non Muslims wearing tudung to enter mosque.
Malays get the point of Mahathir’s chopsticks analogy, and again the Chinese pettifogging will not budge their opinion on the principle invoked by Mahathir — which is that we talk differently and eat differently.
Language and medium of instruction
Kuik Cheng Kang (pix above) argues that Mahathir is wrong to insinuate that sekolah Cina impedes nation building.
He writes in his open letter: “I wish to inform you [Mahathir] that a single language is not the only tool to unite the people”.
Well, lingua franca may not be the ‘only’ tool but it’s certainly the most important one.
A single language is necessary to serve as the common dialect. Or else why do you think Beijing is changing China’s medium of instruction in Xinjiang, Tibet and Inner Mongolia schools from Uighur, Tibetan and Mongolian to Mandarin uniformly?
Or how well are those countries doing where their people speak different tongues — say for example that small Balkan country with the double-barrelled name in which Bosnian, Serbian and Croatian are spoken by its three antagonistic groups of citizens?
Uncertain future for vernacular school
Giving the example of sekolah Cina enrolment currently not comprised 100 percent of Chinese pupils is a tired and tiresome excuse.
It’s like insisting chopsticks are not 100 percent used by Chinese (i.e. other races also use them) or arguing that not every single Chinese uses chopsticks (some prefer the fork and spoon).
So not all in SRJK(C) are Cina. So what? This fact doesn’t take anything away from the Malay nationalist agenda to impose a single-stream education system conducted in bahasa kebangsaan.
It doesn’t matter either that individual Malay parents send their children to various types of school, including boarding schools in Paris or London. The latter are select families and these Malay elites don’t detract from the reality that there is no vernacular education in our neighbouring countries like Indonesia, Thailand and Singapore.
Nor does it matter if Malay society is itself disunited for the time being. You still don’t see any Umno, Bersatu, PAS, Amanah or PKR Malay leaders coming forward to refute Mahathir on Satu Sekolah, do you?
Harapan voters like to make extravagant claims, as Mr Kuik does, declaring that “Malaysian Chinese are well versed in Malay Language”.
Such a pompous claim will either make orang Melayu laugh outright or more determined to make Chinese children live up to their parents’ empty boast that Cina DAP can speak good BM.
Kuik further says Mahathir is wrong to think there is a language barrier among Malaysians.
No, the ex-PM is not wrong on this whereas the Sinchew editor-in-chief is shown above to be mistaken in his opinions.
BELOW: “Orang asing” live in their own ethnic bubble and speak an alien tongue
Langkah Sheraton ibarat bertemu buku dengan ruas
There is only one idea I wish the Sinchew eic to sleep on. He had concluded his lengthy open letter by addressing “Tun Dr Mahathir, as a smart person, how do you end up being fooled by those with an evil heart?”
I’m lobbing the ball back to Kuik Cheng Kang. As a smart man, how do you end up being fooled by the DAP’s diversity propaganda?
The MCA consociational politics has safeguarded the continuity of sekolah Cina since Merdeka. The DAP’s ‘Bangsa Malaysia’ politics, not so much.
Lim Guan Eng claims he is not a Chinese. Hannah Yeoh proclaims there are no Chinese nor Malays nor Indians; all are Malaysians.
The simple question then becomes: If there are no Chinese in Malaysia, then Chinese schools exist to serve whose children?
Remember that it took only a dozen years – from 2008 when DAP first captured a state government to 2020’s Sheraton Move – for our country to see an almost all-bumiputera federal government.
Since Chinese voters are determined to murder the MCA, do you believe that DAP is able or willing to protect sekolah Cina from a similar Sheraton-ion transition?
Mahathir and his fellow Malay nationalists will eventually get their way in abolishing vernacular schools because DAP are proven to be the ultimate appeasers.
In the matter of preserving Chinese schools, MCA seperti menarik rambut di dalam tepung; rambut jangan putus, tepung jangan berserak.
The DAP’s approach is menepuk air di dulang terpercik ke muka sendiri.
Mahathir said Tony Pua is arrogant. He is not wrong. And plenty more resemble Tony to a ‘T’.
The Chinese’s bodoh sombong attitude – see, for example, scornful comments presently being heaped upon Tuan Ibrahim for speaking in BM at an international climate conference – is mocking and hostile.
Bila dipulangkan paku buah keras nanti, it is sekolah Cina that will be caught in the crossfire.
8 thoughts on “Dear Sinchew eic, how long do you reckon sekolah Cina can exist?”
It is a wonder that the Chinese Vernacular schools have lasted so long. How many are aware that these schools used to teach the History, Geography, Hygiene, Social Morals, etc of China in the Mandarin language until after 1951 based on books published by the Commercial Press, Shanghai. Thereafter, the Chinese Vernacular schools taught Malayan subjects in Mandarin. In other words, the historical, cultural and heritage aspects of the Chinese were no longer in the curriculum. I had a relative who was a Chinese Vernacular schools Inspector. She would sit in a class room day after day to monitor that these Chinese Vernacular schools taught the right subjects as prescribed by the Government in the 1950s. A school graduate commands 1,200 Chinese characters just enough to read the comics in the Sin Chew Jit Poh. A Beijing or Taipei University graduate commands a knowledge of 3,000-4,000 Chinese characters. There are 10,000 as recorded. The Chinese Vernacular schools became a political football with the teachers, Chinese media and the mass of the non-English speaking Chinese on the one hand, and the Government on the other. The DAP once was the Chinese Vernacular schools proponent. But now it seemed the DAP is MAKING NOISE IN THE WEST BUT DOING BATTLE IN THE EAST in keeping with its alleged Trojan Horse status on behalf of its alleged HOMELAND. Believe it or not. Or can any one envisage that there will be a truncated Malaya with NO OIL, GAS, TIMBER OR PALM OIL RESOURCES ? Overnight, the BIG SPENDERS OF PUTRAJAYA BECOME DIRT POOR ? So will the rest of the Peninsula. And Singapore RULES ! Amending any constitution is no fun and games..
It is my fervent HOPE that TDM should abstain from spending too much time with neophytes for selfies as he is the most senior and respected Statesman of all Malaysia. If we are not careful, one day we might wake up and find Malaysia is no more and as poor as a mouse without oil, gas, timber and palm oil resources. Malaysia becomes a truncated Malaya. Singapore rules. But at the moment Singapore is like a man drowning in the Singapore Sea, grasping at any straw because Lee Kuan Yew’s Sustainability and Survival Model has been destroyed by an invisible virus. Hence, these are interesting times. Hopefully, nothing what I envisaged will happen or else the BIG SPENDERS of Putrajaya become dirt poor overnight and all in the Peninsula !
i see nothing wrong if we talk and eat differently. my motive of anti authoritarian govt is consistent, regardless ccp or umno/pas. mahathir dont believe or appreciate most thing malay and muslim, look at his daughter, can one see any malayness in her appearance and thought? sinchew view might be a bit narrow, but what one can expect from a newspaper that readers are almost 100% chinese? moreove the writers rebuttal is specifically against the hypocritical conman, not malay muslim in general.
(1) Like I said, the hysterical rebuttals only framed Mahathir’s ‘chopsticks’ remark as a strawman argument — sleight of hand similar to their dogpile on Dr Boo (deliberately misdirecting the crux of the issue).
He was not proposing that chopsticks be ‘banned’ or suggesting that eating with chopsticks was bad as per the critics’ reactions. He merely pointed out the difference (‘Us and Them’ thing).
‘Chopsticks’ is a handy shorthand to a Malay audience. They immediately get it in the context that it was meant.
(2) Sinchew has constructed an echo chamber. Its Malay columnists are liberals like Mariam Mokhtar, Prof. Tajuddin Rasdi, Azmi Sharom who only feed the Chinese confirmation bias.
(3) The rebuttals were boxing at their own shadows. Mahathir and DAP are after all birds of a feather flocking together.
It’s hypocritical to attack Mahathir while at the same time letting DAP off the hook. Like attacking only Mahathir and he alone for failure to fulfil manifesto when the promises were equally fraudulent and meaningless to the DAP.
I did not realise we have ostriches in our beloved Malaysia until this chopsticks caper popped up. Ostriches are famous for sticking their heads in the sand to see, hear or speak no EVIL !
1. i understand chopsticks is not the issue, but most malay i guess dont mind the diff. even a authoritarian ccp cant change the ritual and habit of their muslim population, the same happen in libaral europe which most muslim preserve their own way of life, thus i believe most malay except pas never want to impose their values upon others. wrt chinese school and chinese language, we talked and debated this topic millions time, the changes will come when malay see themselves and chinese as msian and accept dap as just another msian party, what i am trying to say is dap would have no problem with satu sekolah, i believe a large percentage of chinese also dont really care as long as the school is a good one, one hint, make english the main language of national school and let see how many chinese still persist to enroll their kids to chinese school. majority chinese not really reject assimilation and integration compare to muslim, just look at thailand and indonesia, the obvious diff is our constitution and religion. and dont blame us for not willing to improve our bm proficiency, show us where the rich malay elite and politician send their kids for tertiary education, malaysia or indonesia?
2. all media are bias, its not a problem as long as we can choose what to read, sinchew or utusan, we are still relatively free compare to komunis china. and the few name you mentioned have zero chances to have their writes publish in utusan or harakah, at least sinchew open the door.
3. sinchew oped quite often sound very critical towards dap especially lge. i can somehow agree there are similarities btw mahathir and dap political stunt, but mahathir family is extremely powerful and rich that could feed their offsprings for another 30 generations, dap is merely a poor soul that wanna appease a conman and malay.
Like the unexpected existence of the Chinese Vernacular Schools for 64 years after Merdeka, our reserves of oil, gas and timber may be exhausted unexpectedly. Have our many think-tanks ideas on how to resolve this Sustainability and Survival Dilemma of Malaya ? Singapore has a one-man think tank, Bilahari Kausikan, Asia’s best but second best to the United States. He would know the answer when Malaysia will unexpectedly run out of Oil, Gas and Timber resources. But he is not telling.
One and all, please do not be misled with all the gaffes created by the political clowns on the mainland. The real and surreptitious battle is in the East, Sabah and Sarawak. The noise is in the West. An elephant is building up on the doorstep of Malaya backed by you know who and friends of the same ilk. Forewarned is forearmed. Ask Asia’s best think tank but second best to the United States, BK of Singapore ! Today, our PM said Malaysia will back China’s Belt and Silk Road. It’s OK if we are aware we are one of the 4 most important small countries of the World being the UK. Japan, Switzerland and Malaysia. Malaysia without Sabah and Sarawak does not qualify and we can kiss our Musang King durians good-bye ! Oops Its O & G goodbye ! Right, BK ?
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