I’ve seen a lot of links about Syed Hamid Albar, Malaysia’s Foreign Minister, being an absolute douchebag (This is the first time I’ve used that term for ANYONE at all) and idiot on BBC. At first I chalked it up to just another Malaysian being ignorant, but I never realised just how much of an idiot he was till I landed on the Cicak (a local webzine) about it:
And people, that’s the link to the transcript. I always prefer reading something to watching it. Good Gods, what’s he thinking? To quote one commentor, he seemed to have painted her as an ignorant foreigner. Funny, Mr Hamid, I didn’t see her questions as impertinent nor ignorant. If anything, I found your answers quite hilarious. Also, where are the statistics?
Just an example, of how I would have answered if I were in his shoes:
Is it fair that it’s easier for Malays to get to universities than it is for ethnic Indians or Chinese?
We have more non-Malays undergoing tertiary education compared to Malays. Where did you get your statement from?
Yes, I realise that it’s inflammatory and it would have been quickly followed up with (if Ms Sarah had the facts on hand) with the question: But the non-Malays are going into private unis, not public universities. The above answer doesn’t belittle her abilities, but rather puts the onus on her to justify her question. Plus it sounds so much more polished than Hamid’s head-stuck-in-sand ostrich question *kembang*. :P
I do need to point something out though: Any Malaysian who reads his answers to the Lina Joy and Revathi questions will know that it’s a lie. However, regardless of how you look at it, it’s technically a truth; we can change religions, it’s just not recognised by the courts/the law.
And that’s what matters isn’t it? We have personal choice, but that choice is not recognised by the law.