Blind Patriotism and Sarawakians – The sad and worrying truth.

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Let’s take a moment to talk about something not really related to my personal life, which is ‘blind patriotism’.

If you know me well, or you have been to one of my talks/sharings, or perhaps followed my blog since years ago, you’d know I’m quite a patriot, standing firm on issues regarding Sarawak and Sarawakians. Standing on such issues does not mean I am a politician, but I take it as a way to show how much I care for my home.

Now, with the improved penetration of the internet, and the influence of the opposition parties, as well as the ruling BN party lately, we have seen a spike in patriotism among Sarawakians. Calls that Sarawak gain their independence, start fighting for the 18-points appoint the Malaysian agreement, and so much more crop up.

With Adenan Satem also making it known that he is fighting for these rights, Sarawakians, including myself are overjoyed, and the patriotic feeling goes higher to make Sarawak a better place for all, if not us.

The problem however is that some people are now exercising ‘blind patriotism’, which I would define (without using a dictionary), as an act to show patriotism without knowing what one is fighting for.

Recently, an issue about the name ‘Harimau Malaya’ was highlighted by a local football page, and the comments it received saddened me.

It was not the name ‘Harimau Malaya’ which saddened me, but rather the fact that our Sarawakian people were all up in arms, through comments for the wrong reason. To make matters worst, you could see these comments were not exactly bright, with facts and arguments provided by the commentator whom are mostly Sarawakians, either misleading, or bluntly wrong. Here, I share a few comments which caught my attention, and correct the facts in the description of the image.

Among the comments that interest me to reply here.
Among the comments that interest me to reply here.

If you do not follow football, then here’s some rebuttal to what was claimed in the image above (my rebuttal are in sequence to the numbers given):

  1. When it comes to nick names, we don’t need to be emotional about something good and legendary. Not every state can have a football player in the national team. Fact is, we don’t have players from other states in the national team, but we don’t see them whining, do we? – In fact Joseph Kalang was asked to play for the recent national team, but he declined.
  2. Indonesia uses the name ‘The Garudas’ and not ‘Garuda Indonesia’ as they claim. The Garuda aka Phoenix was chosen based on the influence of Hinduism and Buddhism in the country, while the bird depicted on their emblem is derived from the Jawa Eagle (since the Phoenix is a mythical bird). May I just also add that because its a mythical bird, you can just put anything and any special power if you wish to its so called ‘traits’, hence making it less special.
  3. The name ‘Harimau Malaya’ or Malayan Tiger is a sub-species of the tigers that inhabits the southern and central parts of the Malay Peninsula. It is an actual animal, and not something made up to discriminate Sabahans or Sarawakians.
  4. I assumed by now everyone was well aware that Malaysia is made of by Sabah, Sarawak and Malaya. Saying Malaya is not in Malaysia somewhat corrects me about this assumption. Saying one does not study history with such a statement only proves how foolish your knowledge is when it comes to history.
  5. Name calling. What else does a five year old with no good argument have to say?
  6. Interesting how the name which was derived from the 1950’s is now said to be a physiological warfare. Wow!
  7. I was attracted by the last part. A mascot doesn’t have to follow the real name, so we can put a hornbill as our maskot, but call him a duck-lah?

To make matters worst if you notices, name calling was quite prevalent with the administrators of the page being the main target. There is so many more comments out there, but these are the ones I managed to printscreen at press time.  The names of the commentators were blacken out because well, I thought I should not shame them further, as they have already did that.

Now, I get we want more for our Sarawak, but fighting about the name Harimau Malaya which is not only linked to a real animal, but also linked to the history of Malaysian football is a little bit foolish and sad. Read about the name of Harimau Malaya here.

In fact, it gets more dismaying when you realize that these comments, over hundreds of them, is a direct reflection of how a majority  of our Sarawakians think, which in my opinion, seems to be rather foolish and ignorant too.

Hey, I am all for you arguing your case and helping make a point for Sarawak, but only enter a battle field with knowledge on the particular matter. If not, you might not only be shaming yourself, but also shaming the whole state/country, while getting yourself killed – if this was real war.

That said, blind patriotism by our fellow Sarawakians needs to be addressed by those concerned because I feel that if it’s not, it can one day bite us back, and that day looks to come sooner than we know it.

As a matter of fact, I do wonder why these people are angry over the name ‘Harimau Malaya’, when they bother not for Ultras Malaya to change their name to Ultras Malaysia.  After all, Ultras Malaya has no significance in terms of history and science, and they do claim to be the main ultra group of all football ultras in Malaysia, with our Sarawakian side proud to be part of them.  Why the double standard?

p/s: if you know who owns the page I obtained this comments from, keep yourself silent. The last thing I want is for them attacking the owner personally with abuses.

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