Why is it we must define ourselves by race?

We;ve been teaching the boys that we are malaysian, even if we have a chinese or english heritage. That’s what they’ve said to people, what they’ve filled in on forms etc.

Today in school while in search of J1’s missing BM activity book, his BM teacher asked me what race they were. I said they are Malaysian, why? She explained that J1 replied he’s malay and his religion is Islam. haha I asked him how come? He told me that he thought Malaysia is an islamic country mah, arent we all muslims? I said no, all different kinds 🙂 Besides religion is personal, nothing to do with nationality or race.

Anyways, the teacher had to insist on knowing, despite my insisting they were Malaysian only. She says it’s part of the curriculum. They have a section on “get to know your friends” and the two main questions are “What race are you?” and “what religion are you?”.

wtf?! Does it matter?! Other than being understanding when it comes to “food” as it were, it shouldnt really matter right? They are all Malaysians arent they?

So they had to ask what hubby was (cos they follow the father’s race). I really felt like saying human. hahahaha

I told the teacher, I’ve always taught the boys they are Malaysian, full stop. Cos that is what we are.

I find it really sad that we have to continue to define by race only (and then religion). As if it really matters to a bunch of 7 year olds. This is how they start noticing “differences”. Bah! Education.. really..

on the up side, we are going to see Puteri Gunung Ledang: the Musical next week. We are lucky enough to get some tix (thanks to the kind help of a pal hehe), so hubby and I go pak tor together. It’s been a while we’ve been out on a social outing together, just the two of us. May as well soak up some “culture” while we are at it hehee

sigh. Malaysian culture. It aint all about religion and race. Or it shouldn’t.

Have to keep drumming it into the boys so they can stand up for it 😀 Malaysian. Thats who we are, can’t be anything else.

Thank you, I will get off my soap box now 😉


6 thoughts on “Why is it we must define ourselves by race?

  1. I just browsed through your blog and found out that cuddly daddy runs some kind of comic art school (Details still scarse cause haven’t looked through properly hehe)?

    I did have a glimpse of the sample comic sketch posted on your blog and would love to learn how to to draw like that.

    I’ve always love comic/game animations but haven’t the slightest clue with the details.

  2. hi sean. Are you based here? Well, not a school but he has workshops. We are still working out the details (see bansheecreative.wordpress.com)

    What is your age etc? you can email education at bansheecreative.com for further details?

  3. Oh…that is certainly not good ya! Glad that you have the Malaysian approach though. Reckon some parents are drilling into their kids they are xxx race and not to let xxx race get what you are entitled to!

  4. I think it is human nature to categorise other humans.

    That said, here in Malaysia we go that much further, because, as commented, each “category” comes with its specific privileges, as well as limitations.

    It’s sad and infuriating at times, but those are the rules by which we (have to) live by, here.

  5. Yups, I’m based here.

    Around 27 of years. Not sure if it’s too late to harness any artistic skills haha.

    Will give the contact a go. Thanks.

  6. hey Sean, drop me a line using that email and I will notify u as to when the next class is.

    It’s never too late to harness any creative talent 🙂 do you have a website with your portfolio?

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