Independence Day and Malaysia Day

In 2008, Najib Tun Razak said this:

NAJIB: Gov’t does not agree to Sept 16 being made public holiday

The federal government is not agreeable to the suggestion by Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR) advisor Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim that Sept 16 be made a public holiday in the five states under Pakatan Rakyat.

Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak said there should only be one National Day for the country.

“We have chosen the date as our independence day. Having another date will give rise to all kinds of interpretation, polemic and this is not healthy to national integration.

“This is our stand; we give importance to unity and national integration,” he told reporters after launching the Chery multi-purpose vehicle here today.

Malaysia celebrates its National Day on Aug 31 every year.

Anwar had suggested that Kedah, Penang, Perak, Selangor and Kelantan — all of which are under Pakatan Rakyat — declare Sept 16 each year as a public holiday to commemorate the formation of Malaysia.

Penang and Kelantan had accepted the proposal while the three other states were still considering it.

Another year has gone by and we Malaysians are still stuck in this polemic of which date is more important to us. Let me put things into perspective.

The US, a country where Anwar is closely affiliated to, had made 4th of July every year to unite the people in celebrating its independence. Many did not know that on the 4th of July 1796, only 13 states of the former American colony gained independence.

The last state, Hawaii, became the 50th state in the US after it joined them on 21st August, 1959.

But did they celebrate their independence day on 21st August every year? No. If they did, that means, the US is only 50 years old. Even younger than Malaysia.

Some say it is more appropriate to put more importance to 16th September as it is more relevant to the nation’s formation as a whole. I tend to disagree.

Independence day is to commemorate the day all of us achieved freedom from our colonial masters. And it is not only the feeling of freedom from the British rule. It also encompassed the sense of liberation from all the centuries of being ruled under the Portuguese and the Dutch as well.

Finally, on that day, we could chart our own future, instead of being told what to do from the powers in Lisbon, Amsterdam and finally, in London. If not for the endless sacrifices made by the people who fought for our freedom, our independence might come much, much later. Perhaps in 1984, like Brunei’s.

You can also ask any Americans why they lay greater importance to 4th of July instead of 21st August and the answer would be along the line of the things I stated above.

To lay greater importance to 16th September over 31st August would greatly diminish the value of work, time and struggle that our forefathers had invested in.

Does Anwar Ibrahim and Pakatan Rakyat prepare to lose that? Is he willing to steal the original independence day from the country?

To make matters worse, they had cleverly disguised this into 1Malaysia concept. Truth be told, integration can only be felt when there is ONE interpretation of what and when is our Independence Day.

This act of thievery which is aimed only to increase confusion and friction among the people towards their own history.

And please bear in mind (and this is super important), without 31st August 1957, there can never be 16th September 1963. Without the grueling hardship and sacrifices of the people in the past to ensure  independence in 1957, there can never be Malaysia as it was in 1963. This is the lesson that needs to be told to the younger generation. A lesson which the despicable opposition and all its portals like Malaysian Insider, Malaysian Today and MalaysiaKini trying hard not to extol to our younger generation.

To them, whatever the forefathers had achieved back then should just be thrown to the dustbin.

We can go to any pro opposition blogs and see the stark difference in how they wish their 31st August. Most of them chose to write condescending articles and criticism about the fate of Malaysia on its 52nd birthday. Can you find any of the pro opposition blogs with articles that have anything good to say about Malaysia on that day? Besides the usual government bashing and how shitty the conditions of their livelihood were, is there anything patriotic we can take away from? Do you love your country more after reading their articles? Or do you resent your country even more? Is the correct patriotic attitude being promoted by those blogs?

I have no qualms if people want to celebrate 16th September as Malaysia Day but to  make it  even grander than 31st August or to disown 31st August completely and make it an orphan is simply an act of treason in my books. Please look at how the US citizens celebrate their Independence Day. They are united in their pride for the country regardless how despicable they find their leaders.

Hawaians, Californians, Texans, New Yorkers etc all see 4th of July as the birth of their country. 50 states come together to celebrate ONE DATE as the uniting factor in the spirit of their patriotism. We only have 13 states and still being thrown into disunity just because a few opposition leaders want to gain some political mileage?

The opposition needs to be responsible in what they are promoting. You will reap what you sow in the future and it may not be to your liking.