Will Malaysians allow the nation’s problems to fester for another six decades or will we dare to make a daring change starting this Merdeka, wonders JD Lovrenciear.
Many wise folk have said that reality begins with a dream. And only the courageous will pursue their dreams.
What then is that Malaysian dream that must turn into reality given that, having gained independence to rule our nation for 61 years, we are still struggling with racial supremacy and religious dominance?
Whether we are more into Merdeka or Malaysia Day, we need to be clear about our vision: what is the Malaysia we want to create for Malaysians?
Despite our towering structures and resplendent administrative capital Putrajaya, our political journey is still at the level of precarious jostling for power and control.
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Despite all the laws enacted over the decades, the nation still reeks of corruption, which has permeated so many Malaysian institutions, businesses and political circles.
Despite all the red carpets our political leaders have trotted on, despite attending international platforms promoting justice, good governance and humanitarian concern, our backyard stinks of exploitation and human trafficking. Conditions at migrant detention centres in Malaysia speak volumes.
Despite having attained independence for over six decades, we have a long way to go to achieve academic excellence. Our dependence on thousands of IT graduates from India says a lot.
Despite 61 years of experience in governing, we are still dithering about what language to teach in schools.
After six decades, BRIM is still needed.
After six decades, crime infests many housing areas and even private security guards, a lucrative business these days, cannot dispel our fear of being robbed.
Our independence has taught us little about ethics, integrity and values. We are still fighting for more places of worship; more religious holidays; more of this and that. Meanwhile, litter messes up many of our public places and roadsides. Our eateries have improved only at the entrance while behind-the-scenes food preparation, transport, handling and selling leave much to be desired.
Will Malaysians live with all this for another six decades or will we dare to dream and make a daring change starting this Merdeka?