The Malaysian political narrative is so badly twisted that we will not see it changed for many decades to come. For the foreseeable future it will be about the Malay race and, Islam.
First of all, there are good reasons why religion and politics should never mix. If religion teaches us not to question anything that comes from the apex of the religion, then, how does one question any injustice or unfairness? How does one question irrationality? How does one question abuse of discretionary power? These were questions that lead to the Reformation in Europe several centuries ago. This was the horrid challenge of that Age that led to a healthy skepticism that required the separation of religion from politics. And, it did not happen overnight. It took many, many more centuries of separating the chaff of superstition and ignorance and indolence from the wheat that is Knowledge.
This, is the singular challenge that will dog the Malaysian political narrative for a long, long time. And, with the meagre and paltry level of intellect in Malaysia's academic circles, the job of creating a new generation of academics that can rival the generation that came of age in the 1970s, especially in Universiti Malaya, is a tall one. But, we must keep trying and keep going.
Second, the ghosts of memories of Onn Jaafar and Tan Cheng Lock should always haunt Malaysians. In their infinite wisdom these gentlemen saw the necessity of political collaboration that transcends factionalism based on the colour of the skin. I am old enough to be allowed to fantasise and postulate a what-might-have-been scenario.
Had the leadership of the Independence of Malaya Party and the Malayan Chinese Association been allowed to coalesce in 1951 it would have gone on to win the municipal elections and the nascent pre-Merdeka Legislative Assembly. How would the political narrative have evolved if Onn Jaafar, who courageously walked away from an adoring Malay base and the UMNO that he helped to form, had become the Chief Minister of the pre-Merdeka Malaya? This is a question that should haunt us.
But *sigh*, here we are.
Let's not kid ourselves la. Parti Pribumi wants to be the new UMNO.
Malaysians can only hope that we live in a land free from corruption.
But, for the foreseeable future, we will have a political narrative that is reminiscent of George Orwell's Animal Farm (1945), we will always be confronted with this one Commandment (even after getting rid of the enemy)-
ALL ANIMALS ARE EQUAL, BUT SOME ANIMALS ARE MORE EQUAL THAN OTHERS.