Home TA Online Selfish political opportunists vs selfless medical personnel

Selfish political opportunists vs selfless medical personnel

Sketch by Wong Soak Koon

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The medical profession’s unbowed spirit of determination in service has been an inspiration to many. The same cannot be said of the political opportunists, writes Dominic Damian

The enforcement of the movement control order to stem the spread of the coronavirus may have serious implications that go well beyond the pandemic.

Relentlessly and mercilessly, the stay-at-home order is driving many to their knees and exposing their vulnerabilities. We may not see the pressing needs of the most marginalised and downtrodden, who remain hidden because of the order. But for sure these needs exist, and these people continue to struggle.

On the surface, there is no discrimination in the spread of this pandemic. Everyone is a victim in some way. We are all compliant victims; but we know this compliance is for a greater good.

However, there are varying environments that highlight the inadequacy of a social system that lacks conscience and disproportionately hits the most vulnerable in society. Inequalities persist.

For many, the restrictions on everyday movement are an inconvenience. We feel restricted in our daily routine of work, school, college, social gatherings, functions, movies, favourite meals at restaurants and much more.

Yet these deprivations are a small price to pay. Think of those who need to scavenge for the bare necessities of life. Businesses and hawkers are undoubtedly in trouble. The stimulus package appears good on paper – that is all there is to it.

Are we as Malaysians and citizens of the world in this fight together? No, not yet! We have the shirkers and the ones who want to stand out as exceptions to the norm:

  • Those who hoard enough to make it through dozens of ‘movement control orders’ 
  • Those who live in opulent luxury, wading in their swimming pools while sanctimoniously telling others to stay at home 
  • Those who have accumulated enough wealth to be immune to poverty 
  • The shameless elite whose poor taste is unprecedented. They plaster images of their faces on plastic bags of rice and other necessities (funded by taxpayers) and distribute them as if they paid for the aid from their own money
  • Those who deluge us with slapstick ‘comedy’ and other sideshows. Think of the ministers who have turned out to be national and international cringe-worthy embarrassments 
  • A top politician going out shopping with his wife, while everyone else was ordered to venture out alone  
  • Other ministers going out and about, drawing a crowd on their visits

We saw blatant abuses, violations, gross negligence and dereliction of duty. The so-called political elite must never be ‘given face’.

We witnessed charlatans and clowns coming up with their antics. There is nothing amusing here; these antics were revolting and repugnant and revealed an arrogance towards the people.

These are offences coming from a self-serving bunch of individuals. At the worst of times, we see such low political mentality thrust in the spotlight.

They are not us! They don’t know what pain and suffering is. If their greatest achievement is to win power through the ‘back door’, we know what needs to be done. They must be discarded as non-recyclable and inconsequential at the next general election.

In contrast, doctors, nurses and caregivers display sheer craftsmanship. They know that knives and scalpels do not a surgeon or doctor make. Rather, working from the heart is something picked up from outside medical college. It springs from simple life experiences.

Many in the medical profession have compassion as their middle name, kindness as their hidden desire and empathy as their watchword when embracing each patient. They offer sympathy from their soul.

Sketch by Wong Soak Koon

I have seen doctors and nurses forgive abusive patients but are unforgiving on themselves. Such dignified medical personnel must be respected. It is a priceless privilege to have a caring, ethical medical profession, especially one that is not profit-driven, in our midst. It is they who hear your first cry. It is they who with humility offer to heal wounds against impossible odds. Claim them as family!

The medical profession’s unbowed spirit of determination in service has been an inspiration to many. They do not count the cost of their huge sacrifice during this pandemic. The same cannot be said of the political opportunists who are surplus to requirements, who burden the people.

In these times, those who fight to save lives should not be underappreciated and undervalued. They must be acknowledged.

Kudos to the doctors, nurses, medical workers, police and army personnel, and other service providers who are at the front lines in battling this pandemic. We, the appreciative people, salute you.

The views expressed in Aliran's media statements and the NGO statements we have endorsed reflect Aliran's official stand. Views and opinions expressed in other pieces published here do not necessarily reflect Aliran's official position.

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Allan Ong
Allan Ong
25 Apr 2020 7.24am

People who flout the MCO are normally the ones that do not realise the dangers of the pandemic. The virus stick to your clothes and hands. Even with masks, they probably do not follow decontamination procedures when or after doing what they do in the public. As our leaders are in the high risk age, let them feel the wrath. Anyone who feels that he or she is above the pandemic let him or her test the challenge. You can have all the money in the world but if there is insufficient 1st class room/ICU in hospitals to treat you, suffering is inevitable. A lesson be learnt from there or worse. So long as there is no vaccine available, this pandemic will continue to spread like a wave taking turns to infect countries again and again.

24 Apr 2020 8.39pm

This is Malaysia – what can one expect?

Things will never change no matter who is in power – double standards will always remain

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