Terengganu police chief Aidi Ismail is wrong to say that the state has the lowest crime rate because the population consists of mainly Malays
By P Ramasamy
Is it because of deep-seated racial thinking sustained by a racial ideology that combines race and religion in varying ways that is responsible for the present social mess in the country?
Are the members of the police force who should be independent in discharging their duties victims of supremacist racial ideology?
Do we allow our children and the future children to grow up in cloistered atmosphere where everything is equated with race or religion?
When senior civil servants think that race has all to do with crime, then I suppose even those in the top political echelons harbour such a thought.
Terengganu state police chief Aidi Ismail had the audacity to say that the state has the lowest crime rate such as gangsterism because the population consists of mainly Malays.
In other words, he said that since non-Malays have a small presence in the state, the crime rate is very low.
He further elaborated that the Malays respect for the elders could be a contributing factor in the reduction of crime.
Aidi Ismail might be crime-buster but he is hardly an expert on the relationship between crime and ethnicity. It was just an irrational thinking common amongst racists in certain establishments that race has something to do with crime.
Racial profiling is not an exception. It is common amongst the top civil servants and politicians in the country. This racial profiling of equating race with crime has reached dangerous proportions.
There is tendency to arrest and detain members of a particular race just based on the irrational thought that they might be involved in crime.
Given this illogical and dangerous thinking, then there is no need on the part of authorities such as the police to investigate cases thoroughly before action could be taken.
A priori racial profiling allows them the easy out to apprehend criminals without the need for thorough investigation.
Following the logic of racial profiling, can we say that many Indians who have been arrested and detained for alleged gangsterism are not really guilty but victims of racial profiling of the police force?
Recently, hundreds of Indians were allegedly arrested and detained for their involvement in gang related activities. Are they really guilty of crime or were they victims of racial profiling that is common to police?
The Terengganu police chief is not the only senior police who think that race has all to do with crimes such as gangsterism. There are many others in very senior positions.
The Malaysian police are supposed to be much more educated and invariably all police officers are supposed to holding tertiary qualifications. But then, while the level of education has risen in the police force, the quality of service remains much to be desired.
Racial profiling of crimes is something that should concern the police and those in the Home Ministry.
P Ramasamy is Penang Deputy Chief Minister 2