Every individual and every country in world are facing with racial tension. Racial tension can be described as, groups of people or more than one race who live around the same area and they are facing a serious conflict with each other. The effect of racial tension can be a everybody’s worst nightmare, but the most important is to study the causes of racial tension. The reason to study the causes of racial tension is to understand why and how racial tension happens, rather than pointing finger with eye closed.
Discrimination among people is common factors that cause a racial tension. According to Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English (1991),” the definition of discrimination is involve an action of unfair treatment of a person or group on the basis of prejudice” (wordreference, para. 1). There are a several types of discrimination which is can be categories into race, gander and age. The obvious types of discrimination that cause a racial tension is race, and this because of the differences of skin colour, culture, history background and social.
Based on Malaysian historical context, there was an event where the 3 major races which are Malay, Chinese and Indian were separated at the early in the beginning. Malaysia during the times under the colonization of British, there are a huge migration form China and India to Malaysia by the British. The purpose of the immigration is to fulfil the vacancy that available in Malaysia so that the British can produce more products to export as well as they can establish their economical power in South East Asia. This is when it all stated, discrimination between races among Malay, Chinese and Indian by British.
British discriminate these 3 major races in Malaysia by separated them by economically, Malay working as fisherman, Chinese working as a mine digger and Indian working at the estate. Without realizing, the British also socially separated them from being connected to each other especially Indian who live in the woods away from others. Politic is one of the reasons that cause a racial tension. By spreading of doctrines politic game can affect an individual mind and behaviour, or in the bigger picture the entire citizen of the country.
All the political party in the world have their own motives or objective to achieve and mostly to rule the country. They fight for what they want and what they believe, mostly by spreading the ideology among the people. Before Malaysian independence were announce, there are a lot of political party were founded in order to fight for independence over British. The majority of the party are actually based on ethnicity and the parties were not based in ethnicity did not receive sustained support.
Even though the all the parties have the same objective which is to fight for independent, at the same time they also wanted to protect their own interest especially opposition parties. In the struggle to win the election, the opposition party like MCP (Malaysian Chinese Party) bringing up a very sensitive issue in order to get more supporters among the Chinese and the Indians. The issue was to abolishing a Malay special privilege and it actually against Malaysian constitution. This is where all the Malay unites and stands up against the issues and because of this there were riot all around Malaysia that cost thousands of lives.
Politic is one of the biggest influences that can cause a racial tension among people, especially to democratic country like Malaysia. Lack of understanding in terms of religious views is the major factors that lead to racial tension, not just involve only in one country but also people in the whole world. What religion actually means? There are a lot of definition of religion depends on the individual, but based on my understand, religion is a basic set of beliefs which is involve spiritual, faithfulness, devotion to god, practice and worship in order to get to heaven and re-unites with God.
Literally, religion is a “law of life” which promote people to do good things in life, teach human being what love is, and generally religious is a guideline for human being to be a better person that can lead to happiness. Based on the statistic (2007) “there are over 4,200 religions all around the world available such as Christianity, Islam and others” (Religion of the world section, para. 2). By the total numbers of human population, 6. 7 billion people only 16% of them are non-practical religious.
These show why religion is the biggest influence to people around the world. Even though religion taught people to live their life positively, religion still can cause a racial tension. There are 32 religious wars involve Christianity, Islam, Judaism, Buddhist and Hinduism, and out of 32 wars 12 series of wars is a war between Christianity and Islam which held in Jerusalem or also known as Holy Land. Crusade is a longest war known to mankind, and it was between Crusaders and Muslim to conquer the Holy Land.
For Christian, Holy Land is a special to them because Holy Land is a place where Jesus where born, crucifixion and resurrection of Jesus of Nazareth. Same goes for Muslim, Holy Land seems important because Jerusalem is a place where Mosque Al-Aqsa located and the last place that Prophet Muhammad go to visit before he goes up to heaven. Since the place is so special to both religion and religion taught people a moral value, but why there are still wars in Jerusalem up until today? The key to the problem is that they do not actually understand or lack of understanding.
If both leaders of the 2 religions can understand each other, they make an announcement to stop the war and start to learn how to share. As we all can see today discrimination of race, political games and lack of understanding in terms of religious view is the major causes that contribute to racial tension. Many people know that racial tension can only lead to negative result such as fight, war and the wost that i can imagine is death, but there are same thing keep repeating over and over again.
This is still happening because it is involve not only an individual belief but also the whole community. There is a group people also known as “hippies” who against racial problem in 60’s and 70’s, but they failed. To reduce racial tension is to educate the young generation with history about racial tension, so that they can evaluate the situation and consequences without judging based on the religion, race, gander and background. Based on my research, racial tension is impossible to stop because it is part of human nature.