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Saturday, April 30, 2016

The Ferguson Effect / Malay 'Oppression' in Malaysia

BBC Radio 4 - From Our Own Correspondent, Black Lives Matter

"Our members don't have any aggression towards any race or ethnicity... Our members have aggression towards crime.

Some of the worst neighbourhoods in our country are a stone's throw from where we are right now. He's worried that Black Lives Matter fuels something that's been called the Ferguson effect. That's where officers, scared of being accused of racism, don't pursue the bad guys. The result: unsafe streets and higher crime...

[On Chugra {sp?} a band in Kuala Lumpur] Their email address contains the word 'Antichrist' and the numbers 666. The guitarist's T-shirt is covered with axes and a slogan about National Socialism. The lead singer's Facebook page is an odd mix of nostalgia for the pre-colonial sultantes, Holocaust denial and posts about Japan's glorious role in World War II. There are 14th century weapons and state flags with the logo 88. That's code in far right circles for "Heil Hitler", since H is the 8th letter of the alphabet. And for good measure there are some Malay Pride stickers decorated with swastikas.

Why though would young Malays want to take on the trappings of European Neo-Nazis and white supremacist groups from the US?

Jugra's [sp?] songs 'The Rise of our Race', 'Blood and Honour' and 'Snatch Back Our Rule' provide some clues.

'We're not treated with respect' says the vocalist Andika [sp?]. The others nod in agreement. What does that mean in practice? They fall silent for a moment, then talk of gangs of Indian men trying to pick fights at petrol stations or of being exploited by Chinese bosses. Ethnic Malays are the majority here, around 60% of the population... yet some Malays act as if they are a minority under siege. The mustachioed guitarist says he's worked for a long time as a bedroom furniture designer at a Chinese-owned company, but he's never got a salary rise. 90% of promotions go to their people first, he says...

[On the Bumiputra policy] this supposedly temporary measure is still going strong nearly 50 years later, but Andika isn't grateful. The stupid government just created more problems, he says. When you have special treatment, then people look down on you. They don't believe you can make it on your own.

Zairil Khir Johari one of Malaysia's youngest opposition politicians, believes what we calls a perverse inferiority complex has ingrained itself in the Malay psyche. Perverse, says Zairil, because it not only contradicts the sense of entitlement in the nationalist slogan Ketuanan Melayu or Malay Supremacy, but also because of the Malays' demographic dominance and their constitutionally enshrined privileges."
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