In distorting what I had said, the Berita Harian/Berita Minggu editor
claims that he had been scrupulously fair in publishing my rebuttal of
his first editorial attack on me on Friday - when he failed to explain
why Berita Harian had omitted to publish two specific points I highlighted
at the Parliament lobby on Thursday:
As Berita Harian has posed the most provocative and malicious question as to whether the DAP was trying to ‘raise racial tension’ in asking university places for deserving non-bumiputra students and the filling up of the 7,168 university vacancies with science students, its repeated omission of these two points takes on a sinister connotation.
Yesterday, Berita Harian published not only a second editorial attack on me, it also carried a long article by Azhar Abu Samah ‘Siapa sebenarnya suka bangkit isu perkauman?’, which not only continued with the falsehood that I have question the citizenship status of the Berita Harian reporter, but widen the attack from DAP and myself to MCA, Gerakan and the Chinese press.
The Berita Harian/Berita Minggu editor should learn that he could attack MCA and Gerakan with impunity, but DAP will not permit him such a license.
As the Berita Harian/Berita Minggu editor has not been able to establish that under him, the two newspaper have graduated to become a Malaysian institution, defending not just Malay interests but the interests of all Malaysians, regardless of race or religion, I challenge him to a public debate for him to prove the truth of the heading of his second editorial attack on me, namely ‘Berita Harian tetap perjuang hak semua kaum’
I thought of Berita Harian/Berita Minggu when I read the front page headline of the New Straits Times yesterday ‘DPM: Don’t give up on Bangsa Malaysia’.
Speaking at the two days conference on “Nation Building Towards Vision 2020”. The Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi urged Malaysians on Friday not to give up on the dream of a Bangsa Malaysia.
He said: “My fear is that Malaysian are going to give up. Instead of aspiring to the bold objective of creating a united nation, we may recoil into our own different cocoons.”
This was what the Berita Harian/Berita Minggu had done, recoiling into the Malay cocoon instead of growing up and reaching out to a new Malaysian perspective worthy of the dream of a Bangsa Malaysia.
In his first editorial attack on me, the Berita Harian/Berita Minggu editor had claimed that there was nothing wrong in Berita Harian fighting for Malay rights – and I agreed with the caveat that the fight should not end there but must widen to include the rights of all Malaysians as well.
There is an attempt by Berita Harian/Berita Minggu to paint the Chinese press as communal and chauvinist for defending Chinese rights - which is most hypocritical if Berita Harian/Berita Minggu claims the rights to defend Malay interests but deny to Chinese press the right to defend Chinese interest.
The real issue is whether apart from defending the rights of their respective community, they also fight for the larger interest of all Malaysians regardless of race or religion.
I dare say that if an independent study is commissioned, the Chinese press are probably more Malaysian-minded than Berita Harian/Berita Minggu, for apart from defending the legitimate interest of the Malaysian Chinese, they are more conscientious and diligent In upholding the rights of all Malaysian, regardless of race or religion.