BY UMSU PRESS
The racial slur ‘K*ling’ is extremely derogatory and offensive racial slur towards the Indian
community. This word has often been used centuries ago when a Chinese emperor referred
Raja Cholan as ‘Raja Keling’. It was initially used to describe those who come from the
Kalinga Kingdom as it may be a little bit confusing for him to pronounce the word ‘Kalinga’.
However, this word has been used by our ancestors from centuries ago till today to
discriminate against the Indian community.
Of course, we have heard many stories about this racial slur, but a lot of social media
platforms and users have been educating each other on why the usage of racial slur is
offensive. However, there are still many irresponsible and uneducated people on this topic
that still think it is okay to use it. Will it be surprising to know that an educator from one of
the prestigious polytechnics has used the K – word against his student recently? That too in a recorded lecture?
A concerned student from Politeknik Ungku Omar has recently approached the media and
shared the disturbing story that had happened to their friend.
The friend of that student was upset as the lecturer used the K – word to refer to their race,
which was offending. When the lesson ended, the student politely asked to be excused and
wanted to express the unsettling feelings to which the student had received rude replies as a
result. The student continued to tell him politely that the word he used was really offensive
and kept apologizing to him in case the student had made a mistake about it.
However, it was saddening to see the lecturer being totally ignorant to that particular
student’s feelings and the issue as he gave an unapologetic reply and said he was rather not
upset in this situation at all. According to the student, he did admit that he is a thick – skinned guy and it is hard to make him feel upset about it. The student was disappointed, but decided to let the issue slide off.
The unhappy and taken aback lecturer however decided to bring up this issue in another
lecture. Thanks to his responsibility to record the lecture, the students managed to get hold of him using racial slurs in class.
He told the class about the student who was unhappy with him and quoted, “Saya kata ada
pelajar… bengang nak bila saya cakap. Cakap macam k*ling kan. Itu pelajar india la,
pelajar india tu bengang dengan saya. That thing is you, you, you, you, you sendiri.. cakap
lain, tulis lain, cakap lain, dengar lain. WOW.”
(“I said there’s a student. Mad when I said. Said like the k*ling. It is an Indian student. The Indian student was mad at me. That thing is you, you, you, you, you yourself. Talk differently, write differently, talk differently, listen differently. WOW.”)
Netizens were then angered by this issue and demanded an apology from the lecturer.
Pemuda MIC Kedah has also demanded for the lecturer to apologize. On top of all this, the
victimized students were actually afraid of losing their marks if they reported this to the polytechnic management, which is another disappointment as there is no academic freedom
Once this issue went viral, the polytechnic management announced that a severe action will
be taken against the lecturer. However, one question remains: Why go through all this trouble when this can be prevented in the first place?
This whole situation could have been prevented if the lecturer used ‘Indian’ in the first place.
There was no need to use the K – word at all. We all need to understand that this K – word is as offensive as the N – word too. In fact, all the racial slurs that are being used against
Malaysians are offensive. It is high time where we educate ourselves instead of being
ignorant towards it all the time. Racial slurs usage is always a hot debate among Malaysians
and there are many articles and videos made to educate us on this topic. So, why use it when you know you shouldn’t?
Educators in school and universities are among those people who should not be involving
themselves in this kind of issue in the first place but instead teach others. Education is not just what we learn in the syllabus but also ethics and morals. How will an educator educate their students when they themselves lack ethics and morals? It is 2021, and we all should move forward instead of going backwards in time.
Will this still be an ongoing issue in the future? Will our younger generation still be exposed
to racial slurs? Is it relevant to keep throwing racial slurs against one and another? Aren’t we
Disclaimer: The article is merely an academic discussion to express the point of view towards the said issue.
Written by Secretariat of Current Affairs 2021
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