“The root of our country’s problem is patronage. That ‘chin chai’ easygoing attitude we Chinese hold in high regards as the noble pillar of a good person. It is this trait that clouds our judgement each time we were asked to pick between two outstanding leaders when clairvoyance fails us. Patronizing is a word which nondescriptly stays submerged while we finger point others as the root cause of our country’s failure. What that means is if our country does fail, we are also a party to be blamed due to this trait of ours that we carried too far thus compromising our own belief.
Remember those times when your printing orders came wrong and you still accepted it? When your carpenter changes your design without permission and you let him go? And those times you were obliged to pass a failed student because he is your friend’s son? Or when your boss instructs you to do something you knew was wrong but still does it because he’s your boss? Then delegated you as a signatory to his company’s cheque and you did it to please him? And gave a rapist a chance though he was caught red handed? And turned a blind eye even though you witness a discrepancy committed by your boss for fear of losing your job? And kept silent even when your rights were infringed with? There are umpteen instances where we patronize others and there are too many to list them here completely not forgetting those times when we seek favors.
Historically speaking, it is this very attitude that bugs Tunku about lky. The lengthy bouts in parliament wears Tunku thin because lky never compromises neither does he patronize. And that’s the reason why he was sacked because he was gradually seen as ‘the’ thorn that is not going to go away without a fight.
So the question is did we patronize because of us being a multiracial country and patronizing became a way of tolerating? Or we patronise┬ábecause that’s simply the way we are- trading in third grade products while our top grade timber went abroad?
We have failed to recognize the fact that we can be harmonious without being intimidating so long as we have more gentlemanly discourse over anything under the sun. Thus we compromise. And thus, this is what’s happening right now in our country today.”