Thursday, October 6, 2011

On Discrimination

Have you ever been denied certain things because of the appearance you were in? Like the cloth you wear or the car you were driving? I have been a few times. I think it is human nature to judge people based on appearance first and character later. Despite being a so-called 'anak Dato' I drive a crappy old Proton Saga that must have been nearly as old as my younger sister and on a glance must have looked as if it was taken off a junkyard. But I am happy with it. My dad just didn't want to pamper their children with too much luxury and I am at least proud to drive a national car.

So last month I drove my car to an event in UKM Bangi where the Deputy Prime Minister, Tan Sri Muhiyiddin Yassin was the VIP. As I approached the entrance of the parking lot, the Pak Guard there saw me from afar and made a cross sign by his arms and shouted 'Tak boleh masuk!'. I saw there were still a lot of empty parking spaces but then I thought they might be reserved for the lecturers and VIPs and the students had to park outside. So outside I went and parked my car down the hill. From there, I had to walk a few hundred meters uphill under the scorching sun to reach the venue. Drenched in sweat, I finally arrived at the entrance when I saw a fellow friend of mine driving a car much better than mine smiled and waved at me, then drove swiftly into the parking lot I was denied into just earlier. The Pak Guard who stopped me earlier just stood there, and to my surprise just let in all the other students' car too. 'Wow, this is what I call daylight discrimination!' I thought. Being the Yang Dipertua for your college means nothing in the eyes of others when you're driving a crappy car. In the hall I asked my friends where they parked their car and they all parked just outside the hall.

I decided to let if off my mind. However, in the afternoon I was invited to have lunch at the same table with the Deputy Prime Minister. I sat near him, we had met when he had his Charity Golf event in Bandung, so we talked about the place, he asked me how come I am now here in UKM, and I explained that I am under a Twinning Program with Indonesia. As I was chatting with the DPM, the Pak Guard saw me. I was sure he did, because as I turned towards him, he abruptly turned his head away, perhaps recognizing me as the one driving the crappy car this morning. He must have thought I am a VIP of some sort for sitting on the same table as the Ministers and Vice Chancellor and felt guilty for denying my entry this morning. The fact is that I am nothing more than a student representative. While there is nothing much to be proud of just sitting over lunch with these people, I felt satisfied for being able to show him how appearance can sometimes be a bad measurement for a person.

So people, let us not judge others solely by their appearance

All this reminded me of a joke I read somewhere which doesn't really have anything to do with the moral of this story, but hilarious indeed:

Not long ago, there was this man driving fast a car with tinted glass windows at the heart of Kuala Lumpur. The police saw him driving so fast and forced him to stop by the roadside. The car stopped, and the driver lowered the tinted glass windows. The police demanded for the driver's license in a harsh manner without even looking at the driver. The driver suddenly got in a rage and shouted ''Suka hati aku la, ni BAPAK aku punya jalan!''. The policeman glanced at the signboard that stated the name of the road. It read:

Jalan Tun Razak


As I was glancing over the Pak Guard


germaine said...


mimiqt said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
mimiqt said...

This reminds me of my visit to Cadbury Chocolate Factory in Dunedin. The worker there initially didn't mind me and my friend went in without plastic head cover as we've already got our veils. But later he asked us to wear it and said, "sadly, it's the policy". Alright, my story may not be a 'real' discrimination but mere 'policy'. Yours, wowww. And tahniah, dapat jumpa DPM :D

Ps: sorry tadi ada kurang perkataan. haha.

sakinah zaini said...

betul apa yang abg lutfi cakap..tapi,
biar ape pun pandangan orang pada kita,abaikan..fikirkan apa pandangan Allah pada kita.. n_n

AHMAD AFIQ said...

UKM mmg camtu. kalau bawak keter baru dia bagi masuk. if yg bunyi macam gampang n lama2 dia tahan. dia takut org nak mencuri

Anonymous said...

yup. you are definitely right. but that is not a new issue. i've been through it for so many times. but who cares? my life is not about satisfying others expectations

Anonymous said...

if it was me i would've give him one nice smug face i could muster, but yeah to not judge is hard, i thnk everyone must've at least one experience of being judged and judging pffttt

Anonymous said...

cool story! and the joke, so it was najib tun razak which the police was being rude on? cool.. he must have been out of his mind then,,, was it true story?

Anonymous said...

this post show sth about the author.. u just looks like a humble person.. :)very patient ..

adila idayu said...

wow..tat's great..
there hav a lot of policy when we talked bout discrimination actually..but it's depends who u are..=)

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