Minority Representation: America vs Malaysia

Below is an article that I wrote in 2017 as a columnist for the news portal ‘Menara.my’ under the title, “Minority Rights: Malaysia vs America”. Seeing that the action of likening Black oppression in the United States of America to the supposed minority oppression in Malaysia is prevailing after the unfortunate death of a Black citizen due to police brutality in America, I thought that this article might be enlightening to some. Since this article was written before Malaysia’s 14th General Election, the breakdown of the Dewan Rakyat representatives is out of date. However, do keep in mind that the number of minority representatives have increased and not decreased since the previous election.

America, the “Land of the Free,” the country with the best governance and laws which provide equal rights for all human beings, no matter their race or religion. And as the Muslim Bumiputra-led government of Malaysia is always heavily criticised for discriminating the minorities, Malaysia should definitely learn about racial and religious equality from the United States … right? 

In 1788, when the United States Constitution granted each state the power to set their voting requirements, suffrage was mostly restricted to white males. [1] At that time, so many African-Americans were legally bonded to their owners as chattel slaves that the status of slave had been institutionalised as a racial caste associated with African ancestry. [2] The existence of one of the largest and most destructive conflict in the Western world, “The American Civil War” is an obvious proof of the whites’ refusal to accept the fact that the African-Americans are also humans who deserve the rights to live as freemen. The war between the Northern states who pledged under President Lincoln’s words that all men are created equal and the pro-black slavery Confederate States of America lasted for four years and cost about 625,000 lives. [3]  

Even after the Civil War ended and the Northern states came out victorious, a Confederate sympathiser who was also initiated into the pro-Confederate ‘Knights of the Golden Circle’ fatally wounded President Lincoln in an exhibition of protest against the freedom of the blacks. [4] In a clear attempt to return the newly freed slaves into their former condition, most Southern states enacted the “Black Code” which prohibits the blacks to assemble in groups [5], testify against white people in court [6], and even to simply learn to read and write. [7][8] 

Upon the long-delayed ratification of the Thirteenth Amendment which abolishes slavery and the Fifteenth Amendment which granted the rights to vote to all men without any regards to their race, the “Jim Crow Laws” were enacted, enforcing a racial segregation in the Southern United States. Poll taxes, literacy tests and threats of violent acts by the whites in the form of lynch mobs and terrorist attacks effectively excluded most blacks from the political system. [9] 

It took them nearly a hundred years to finally overrule the “Jim Crow Laws” in the forms of the “Civil Rights Act of 1964”[10] and the “Voting Rights Act of 1965”. [11] 

And yet, Malaysian minorities have been voting since the very first Malaysian election in 1955. They were neither bounded as chattel slaves nor ripped off from their rights to vote, assemble in groups, and to learn to read and write. In fact, a number of Chinese and Indians were already elected during the first Malaysian election, a stark difference against America which did not feature an African-American representative until their 41st congress. [12] 

Even today, the minorities in America are still greatly under-represented in America compared to Malaysia which has a more or less balanced amount of representatives. 

Only 7.36% of the representatives are Hispanics and/or Latinos compared to the 16.30% of the American population who are Hispanics and/or Latinos. Whereas in Malaysia, the representation of the races in Malaysia’s Dewan Rakyat is more or less well-balanced. 

Not just that, in America, the Christians, which encompasses 70.60% of the population, makes up a massive figure of 93.10% of the representatives—crowding the representatives of the minorities which makes up 28.80% of the population to only having 5.52% of the seats. However, in the Muslim country of Malaysia, the Christians (a minority religion) are over-represented, making up about 14% to 21% of the Dewan Rakyat compared to their 9.20% figure in the population statistics. The Muslims make an almost exact figure of about 61.29% to 61.30%.  

Just by looking into the history and the current political scenario of the two countries, it is already obvious that the government of the “Land of the Free” and its majority, the whites, are far more racially and religiously biased than the Malaysian government and its majority, the Bumiputras. In truth, one should always properly study a country with a fair mind before making any judgements and comments which will ignite racial and religious conflicts, perturbing the peace and harmony of the country. 

Sources: 

1. http://15thamendment.harpweek.com/HubPages/CommentaryPage.asp?Commentary=01Timeline1865 

2. https://slate.com/human-interest/2015/05/peter-h-wood-strange-new-land-excerpt.html 

3. http://www.civilwar.org/education/history/civil-war-overview/overview.html 

4. https://archive.org/details/shadowofsentinel00getl 

5. Zebina Eastman, Black Code of Illinois, 1883, p 36 

6. Zebina Eastman, Black Code of Illinois, 1883, p 44 

7. Acts passed by the General Assembly of the State of North Carolina [1830-1831], chapter VI 

8. https://blogs.ancestry.com/ancestry/2017/10/05/professional-genealogist-offers-advice-on-tracing-african-american-roots/ 

9. https://web.archive.org/web/20070304111738/http://www.usdoj.gov/crt/voting/intro/intro_b.htm 

10. https://www.history.com/topics/black-history/civil-rights-act 

11. https://www.history.com/topics/black-history/voting-rights-act 

12. https://history.house.gov/Exhibitions-and-Publications/BAIC/Black-Americans-in-Congress/ 

Forgetting Our Future

At times like these, I wonder how can the people — not just the youngsters, forget the ones we owe our lives to. Perhaps it doesn’t matter because we are here today and let yesterday be what it is; the past.

It pains me as I watch faces who said that they are a part of us leave the moment they thought they see glitter on the other side of the river. Perhaps it doesn’t matter because there’s a chance that tomorrow you’ll find a golden apple and let today be what it eventually will be; history.

It tortures me when I realise that no one is concerned about how we are all forgetting the values which promise tomorrow. How no one is concerned about how the water that we saved in hopes to live through the years of drought is rapidly seeping out from the cracks of old age. How no one is concerned enough to fix the cracks and replenish the reservoir so that we can make it through tomorrow. Perhaps it doesn’t matter because we’re sleeping with a full stomach today and let tomorrow be what it is; uncertain, unfound — lost.

KUALA LUMPUR, 21 Feb — PEMBAKAR SEMANGAT … Peranan besar tulisan Jawi pada akhbar-akhbar Melayu seperti Utusan Melayu, Utusan Zaman dan majalah Warta Ahad dalam menyuburkan semangat kemerdekaan dan petriotisme di kalangan orang Melayu. Di dalam suratkhabar-suratkhabar itu digambarkan kesedihan orang yang dijajah serta dipaparkan juga kelemahan dalam masyarakat menyebabkan semangat untuk membebaskan tanah air dari belenggu penjejah semakin membara. Kelihatan akhbar Utusan Zaman keluaran Ahad 1 September 1957 yang memaparkan perkataan ‘Merdeka’, ‘Merdeka’, ‘Merdeka’, dalam huruf Jawi dengan megah menghiasi muka satu akhbar itu dengan foto pemasyhuran kemerdekaan oleh Tunku Abdul Rahman Putra Al-Haj. –fotoBERNAMA HAKCIPTA TERPELIHARA

World’s Largest Lego Model Unveiled

The world's largest Lego model is on display at Times Square in New York. Photo by Emmanuel Dunand/AFP/Getty Images
The world’s largest Lego model is on display at Times Square in New York.
Photo by Emmanuel Dunand/AFP/Getty Images

The X-Wing starfighter from Star Wars has come to life as the world’s largest Lego model, except that it can’t fly, move or shoot laser beams. The 45,000-pound model was assembled by a team of 32 people over the course of 17,000 man-hours in Kladno, Czech Republic.

The X-Wing comprises 5.3 million Lego bricks, some 2 million more than the previous title-holder, a robot at Minnesota’s Mall of America. At 43 feet from front to back, it’s actually two feet longer than than the fictional X-Wing that Luke Skywalker flew into battle in the original Star Wars movie.

The model will remain in Times Square through Saturday before being packed up and shipped to Legoland in Carlsbad, California.

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Peristiwa-Peristiwa Hitam dalam Sejarah Melayu

Video dibawah memaparkan peristiwa-peristiwa hitam didalam sejrah Melayu.

Tonton dan fikir…

Anda mampu mengubahnya…

In Pictures: A Look at the World of the Past

A look at the world of the past, through ancient ruins and archaeological discoveries.

A part of the ancient city of Ptolemais is pictured near the town of Ad Dirsiyah, about 100 km (62 miles) east of Benghazi January 27, 2012.

A pair of binoculars recovered from the RMS Titanic is on display during the Titanic Auction preview by Guernsey’s Auction House in New York, January 5, 2012. The biggest collection of Titanic artifacts is to be sold off as a single lot in an auction timed for the 100th anniversary in April of the sinking of the famed ocean liner.

A pocket watch recovered from the RMS Titanic is on display during the Titanic Auction preview by Guernsey’s Auction House in New York January 5, 2012.

An employee displays clay tablets belong to the Sumerian era at the Iraqi Ministry of Foreign Affairs headquarters in Baghdad January 30, 2012.

Journalists and policemen enter the Sednaya monastery built in 547 AD, north of Damascus, January 31, 2012, during a tour organized by the Ministry of Information to see the damage caused by a shell fired at the monastery on Sunday. Officials say the shell was fired by rebels causing a one-meter hole in the wall of one of the convent’s rooms.

An archeologist brushes off dust at a burial chamber at the archeological site of Atzompa, in the Mexican state of Oaxaca in this undated handout photo released by the National Institute of Anthropology and History (INAH) on July 18, 2012.

Gold coins and the ceramic jug in which they were found hidden are displayed at the Arsuf cliff-top coastal ruins, 15 km (9 miles) from Tel Aviv, July 9, 2012. The 1,000-year-old hoard of gold coins has been unearthed at the famous Crusader battleground where Christian and Muslim forces once

Fossils of Xenoceratops Found

Xenoceratops (meaning “alien horned-face”) had massive spikes at the top of its head, two hooks jutting from its forehead, and a ruffled shield around its neck.

Palaeontologist in Canada found fossils which belongs to a 1814.37 kg, 6.096 meters dinosaur, the Xenoceratops. A distant cousin of Triceratops, the dinosaur’s name means ‘alien hoened-face’. It was named such because of its strange pattern of horns on its head and above its brow. Such horned dinosaurs are very rare in this part of the fossil record. 

The creature which roamed the Earth about 80 million years ago is one of the oldest specimens known to date of the Ceratopsid group.

Xenoceratops, a newly discovered Cretaceous-era dinosaur,likely grazed on cattails and ferns in a primeval forest in what is now Canada.

“It seems to have the general types of ornamentation that we see taken to even greater extremes in later Ceratopsids. That suggests the elaborate headgear evolved earlier.”” said David Evans, a paleontologist at the Royal Ontario Museum.

Unearthed: Ancient Temple in Bali

Balinese archaeologists work next to discovered stone structure of an ancient temple in Denpasar, Bali, Indonesia on Friday, Oct. 26, 2012. An archaeologist says a structure that is believed to be the remains of an ancient Hindu temple has been unearthed on Indonesia’s resort island of Bali. (AP Photo/Firdia Lisnawati)

A structure believed to be a Hindu temple in Bali was found. The temple is also thought to be the largest temple ever found in Bali.

Wayan Swantika of the local archaeology agency says that workers were digging a drainage basin last week in eastern Denpasar, Bali’s capital, when they discovered a large stone about 1 meter underground. So far, the excavation teams have uncovered  57-meter of the temple structure.

A Balinese archaeologist measures a stone of ancient temple structure in Denpasar, Bali, Indonesia on Friday, Oct. 26, 2012. Wayan Swantika of the local archaeology agency says workers digging a drainage basin last week in eastern Denpasar, Bali’s capital, at first discovered a large stone about 1 meter (3 feet) underground. (AP Photo/Firdia Lisnawati)

The temple is still being analysed but according to its shape and characteristics, Wayan Swantika believes that the temple was built between the 13th and 15th century.

Balinese archaeologists work on the ancient temple structure in Denpasar, Bali, Indonesia on Friday, Oct. 26, 2012. An archaeologist says a structure that is believed to be the remains of an ancient Hindu temple has been unearthed on Indonesia’s resort island of Bali. (AP Photo/Firdia Lisnawati)

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Mammoth Found in Russia

Last month, an 11 years old boy, Yevgeny Salinder, found a well-preserved mammoth carcass at his home in Taymyr, Siberia, Russia.

A handout photo provided by The International Mammoth Committee in Russia on Friday Oct. 5, 2012 of the mammoth.

The mammoth carcass is estimated to be 30,000 years old. It is informally named Zhenya, after the boy’s nickname. Its official name is the Sopkarginsky mammoth, according to ABC News. The 16-year-old mammoth was 2 meters tall and weighed 500 kilograms.

Scientists say:

  • Could have been “possibly” killed by a human or a rival mammoth.
  • The mammoth was pretty small for his age.
  • It’s one of the best-preserved bodies of a grown mammoth yet found.

Unearthed: Enormous Roman Mosaic

A giant poolside mosaic featuring intricate geometric patterns was unearthed in the southern Turkey earlier this week under a farmer’s field. The first hint that something stunning lay underground in southern Turkey came in 2002, when Purdue University classics professor Nick Rauh walked through a freshly-plowed farmer’s field near the ancient city of Antiochia ad Cragum. The plow had churned up bits of mosaic tiles.

The mosaic was a decorated floor of a bath complex. The pool was 7-meter long. The find likely dates to the third or fourth century, said Michael Hoff, a University of Nebraska, Lincoln art historian and director of the mosaic excavation. The mosaic composed of large squares, forming unique geometric designs, from starburst patterns to intertwined loops on white background.

Unique geometric patterns on the mosaic floor. (Photo courtesy of University of Nebraska, Lincoln)

The mosaic is 149 square meters. So far, it is the largest Roman mosaic ever found in southern Turkey.  The existence of the mosaic suggests that Antiochia ad Cragum was far more influenced by the Romans than believed.

The largest Roman mosaic ever found in southern Turkey(Photo courtesy of University of Nebraska, Lincoln)

 Only about 40 percent of the mosaic had been revealed so far. The team will return with students and volunteers to complete the mosaic excavations in June 2013. Hoff said, the plan is to construct a wooden shelter over the entire mosaic and open the site to public visits.

Archaeologists cleaning the big mosaic floor. (Photo courtesy of University of Nebraska, Lincoln)

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Goodbye Neil Armstrong…

Neil Armstrong, the first man to walk on the moon, poses for his NASA portrait ahead of his historic Apollo 11 mission in July 1969.

The family of Neil Armstrong, the first man to walk on the moon, says he has died at age 82. A statement from the family says he died following complications resulting from cardiovascular procedures. It doesn’t say where he died.

On July 20, 1969, Apollo 11 astronaut Neil Armstrong became the first man to walk on the moon. Armstrong is pictured here, shortly after collecting a sample of lunar dust and rocks. At his feet is the handle for the sample collection tool.

Armstrong commanded the Apollo 11 spacecraft that landed on the moon July 20, 1969. He radioed back to Earth the historic news of “one giant leap for mankind.” Armstrong and fellow astronaut Edwin “Buzz” Aldrin spent nearly three hours walking on the moon, collecting samples, conducting experiments and taking photographs.

In this 1969 photo provided by NASA the crew of the Apollo 11 mission is seen. From left are Neil Armstrong, Mission Commander, Michael Collins, Lt. Col. USAF, and Edwin Eugene Aldrin, also known as Buzz Aldrin, USAF Lunar Module pilot.
(AP Photo/NASA)

The Apollo 11 crew leaves Kennedy Space Center’s Manned Spacecraft Operations Building during the pre-launch countdown. Mission commander Neil Armstrong, command module pilot Michael Collins, and lunar module pilot Buzz Aldrin prepare to ride the Apollo 11. (AP Photo/NASA)

In this Monday, Feb. 20, 2012, file photo provided by NASA, Apollo 11 Astronaut Neil Armstrong speaks at a celebration dinner honoring John Glenn in Columbus, Ohio.(AP Photo/NASA, Bill Ingalls, File)