As a blogger, you will accidently know other bloggers too. Although we rarely tell each other that but that’s the truth. Everyday, you read what others have to say to feed your own mind and decide if the world is on your side. So, it devastated the hell out of me when I found out that a fellow blogger, who I don’t personally know but have always admired for his boldness and the straight-forward manner in his writing, was expelled from his institution just because he has something to say in his blog.
I feel for this blogger. What on earth does the institution have to defend themselves anyway? I’ve read all 6 articles that is said to have cost him the place there and could hardly see what the institution is getting all heated about. What I saw was earnest suggestions and room for improvement. Yes, some of the lecturers are not good in their command of the English Language and yes, you should always think of a good set of objectives and outcomes if you want to take up the students’ time and money to organise an event. The “membuta tuli” culture should be out of our system and whenever possible, institutions especially educational ones should uphold the notion of accepting new idea and progress into new frontiers.
Which of course brings us back to these questions. Are we always supposed to follow what the others have done and are not entitled to our thoughts just because we “owe” a certain institution something? (although I hardly count giving a seat or position when you utmostly deserved it as a debt in the first place). If we pride so much on being a free nation, why are we so afraid of opinions and new thoughts? Freedom of speech as long as it does not interfere with the nation security should be practiced and pondered upon. If we are to move forward, why are we still stuck in the old mindset? We should be able to accept criticism and reality when someone puts it in our face. What bites me is the fact that the institution actually read the 6 articles and expelled this student instead of giving a serious thought on the issues he outlined in them. Talking about being childish…
For me, I feel that it doesn’t mean that if you are working for the government, you need to be on their ruling party side. I don’t recall the Malaysian Constitution ever saying that and I bet my guts that it doesn’t. Having heard some really good academics being targeted for their boldness in giving opinions makes my heart leap a beat. It’s our 50th Independence Celebration so I would say this whole fiasco is not what we would mark our development with. Make up your mind and stand by it. To YOU, all my heartfelt support goes out sincerely..