By TAY TIAN YAN
Sin Chew Daily
People start to chant the old slogan again: Ini Kalilah! which means if they don’t get to overthrow BN this time, there’ll be no chance in future.
An opposition rep even vowed to quit politics if there’s no change of federal government this time.
Stay calm, young people! The Earth will not stop revolving around the Sun because of one more failed attempt. Opportunities are always reserved for the best prepared.
In the 2013 general elections, Pakatan Rakyat’s slogan was Ini kalilah! meaning this is the one and only time and there would not be another chance in future.
DAP was storming the Chinese community in a big way, launching merciless assaults against its rivals, much to the fascination of the Chinese voters who made “changing government” their ultimate mission.
Unfortunately that passion frightened the Malays, who were not quite used to such aggressive, revolution-like popular movement.
The Malay society was not against change, but they had their own traditions to keep. They held in very high regards the authority and were generally comfortable with what they already had. They indeed wanted change, albeit a more gradual one.
For hundreds of years, the Malays have been quite passive when it comes to politics, even when they were being invaded by foreigners, including the Portuguese, Dutch, British and Japanese. They would hardly strike back in force.
And over the centuries, changes had been instituted from top down, very rarely the other way round or through resistance from the populace.
Of course in our democratic age today, the Malay society can make good use of the democratic mechanism to register their choices.
A radical change is not what they want. As such, the 2013 Ini Kalilah! slogan did not bring up the reformative spirit in them, but instead reignited their conservative awareness.
They were concerned about the consequences of a change of federal government through such a radical change, and were worried whether DAP would dominate in the new government, whether their privileges would be eroded, their entitlements revoked and their peaceful society in turmoil.
Having considered such things, the Malays made their choices. Umno’s seats increased and BN was still in power, when the votes were finally tallied.
In 2008, there were no big hoohahs during the election campaign, but change was creeping in quietly. No rekindling of conservative and resistance attitudes, but Umno suffered a major setback.
Social reform must never be rushed through. Ini Kalilah! only provided a quick fix to steal the power at a time social conditions were not ripe for such a change and the opposition parties themselves were not quite prepared, as they counted on a fiery slogan and elated public sentiments to try to accomplish a tall goal.
And the Ini Kalilah this time is even less convincing. They claim that Mahathir is already 93, LKS 76 and Anwar 71. If we don’t do it this time while these old men are still around, we won’t have another time.
Seriously, I don’t see any future in this country if all we can do is to pin our hopes on these three old men.