Thursday, August 09, 2007

The story of the Famili-tiri - Part 1

Once upon a time, there is a family. This family has a house in a nice place call Malaya. The family members include the father, mother and several sons and daughters. One fine day, the father brings back a woman and several children. This woman is the second wife. And this second wife happens to be of a different race. Needless to say, the man's first wife was not happy, in fact she is downright angry and frustrated having to share the same house and husband with another woman. Nevertheless, they continue to live together in the whole big house. The father, in trying to be fair to the first wife, gave 'special preference' to the first wife and her sons and daughters. It is understood that the first wife offspring are less educated, less bright and less inclined to be successful in their life due to their upbringing in a village. It is also known that the second wife, having come from a city are aggressive, wealthier and has a tendency to be more successful and educated.

Time flies, and the family grows. From a simple 10 members in the family to 100 members in 10 years time and reaches 1000 members in 50 years time. Over these period of time, the members of the family play and eat together in the same house. They have their differences, they have different religion, but there is harmony and compromise when face with issues or arguments. The patriarch of the family died many years back, and most of these 1000 members of the same family sometimes don't even know how they are related. You can't blame them, the young ones are already in their 3rd to 4th generations. All they know is that they are from the same family that breath the same air, eat the same food, share many common interest and share a common history for the past 50 years. In fact the same old house that is used by the first generation is now used as a common hall for the whole extended family! Although they are not staying in the same house, they are very much a close knitted family that build their homes around the common hall.

Unfortunately, good things never last. Although the offspring of the second wife are very much part of the family, they were reminded again and again that they are not part of the family by the radicals from the first wife family. They are constantly verbally threatened with expulsion to where the second wife came from. And the offspring of the first family will always insist that they are the owner of the house and they are the rightful heir of the land. Although they were given special right in education and business, these radicals among the first family always search for more ways to grab back what is 'rightfully' theirs. They conveniently forget, these special privileges are meant to assist them to be successful but not to be used as a tool to ensure they would not fail in life. They forget that the support was meant to encourage them to be able to stand by themselves, and not something to be hold on to forever. Throughout these 50 years, instead of learning on how to use the special privileges to aid themselves, they have learned on how rely on these privileges. Human mind rarely satisfies, and will covet more when given the opportunity.

Offspring from the second wife feel sad that they are treated as anak tiri. Even some of the offspring from the first wife feel weird when told by the radicals, that the siblings which they have played with and eat with since they were born were not of the same stock. That they are different and that they took away a huge part of what should rightfully be theirs. As these first wife offspring grows up, they are made to believe that they inherited the whole house and these frens which they used to play with are just visitors which are allowed to make money and make a living. They are made to understand that their grand grand grand mother was gracious enough to allow the second wife to 'join' in the family. That these siblings-tiri are different, in culture, religion and morality.

The offspring from the second wife, meanwhile, feels betrayed, sad and confused why they are labelled this way. Didn't they help build the jamban near the river? Didn't they join in the night patrols when there is communist threat? Didn't they win honours in sports for the country?

The second wife child are getting more puzzled by the day as there are more quotas in education, in jobs and business opportunities. They love the house, but they wonder, why can't the house love them? Why?

2 anak ayam bother to comments:

Hedonese said...

Dianak tirikan, eh? I came across an old rap song by Namewee called "Kawanku", it's quite funny :D

Anyway, something was said at the social justice forum which i thot was quite perceptive, that we all know wat the problems are in msia, but most of us know one side (our) problems, but not many of us know the problems from the other side...

May we be bridgebuilders in this 50th anniversary of merdeka... but even merdeka statement get criticized! apa nak buat...

sun said...

Well, I have read ur comment's in namewee's blog, u came out with some of ur pretty good points and I agree with you.