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Former makeup enthusiast and bookworm. Currently adopting a minimalist lifestyle. Contact me at phylliciarobert@gmail.com for inquiries.
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Wednesday, November 16, 2011

A Rant: Dumb And Dumber Government Clinic Style

Hello there,

Yesterday I went to the government clinic in my district and registered as it was my 1st time going there. Everything was fine until I was asked what my race was. Here's how it went:

Dumb And Dumber Scene 1
Nurse: Apa bangsa ko? (What is your race?)
Me: Indian Kadazan.
Nurse: Jadi mana satu laitu? Mesti satu jak. Ikut bapa lah. Apa bangsa bapa ko? (So which one is it? There can only be one. Let's just follow your father's. What is your father's race?)
Me: Bapa saya la Indian Kadazan. (My father is Indian Kadazan)
Nurse: Bapa dia lagi? (What about his father?)
Me: Datuk saya orang India. (My grandfather is Indian)
Nurse: Nah, India la bangsa ko. (That makes you Indian)
Me:*Thinks* %^*&##

Two things dear readers.  First of all, why must there only be one race? What about the Sino-Kadazans? Or Murut-Ibans? Or any combination that you can think of? Surely in the form there is the 'lain-lain'/'others' option for us exotic beings?

Secondly, while I understand that the nurse was trying to figure out what race I fit into, and that it is common to follow the father's or the father's father's race, can I really fit into the race of Indian? One look at me and even a 2 month old baby can see that I am far from being pure Indian. I am not being racist and wouldn't mind in the least of being called Indian if I was REALLY pure Indian. However since I am not of a single race it's not right to say that I am.

Dumb And Dumber Scene 2
Nurse: Jadi mana satu ko mau taruh ni, India kah Kadazan? (So which one do you want to put on the form, Indian or Kadazan?)
Me: *Thinks* $#@^%*&

She might as well have asked me to cut a vital vein/artery and drain out either the Indian or Kadazan blood coursing through it. Maybe I seem to be making a mountain out of a molehill but seriously, why on earth should I have to choose between the two? I am both. End of story. Dummy.

Dumb And Dumber Scene 3
Nurse: Apa bangsa ko dalam surat beranak? (What is the race stated in your birth certificate?)
Me: Tiada bangsa saya dalam surat beranak, bangsa mama sama bapa saya jak. (My race is not stated in my birth certificate, only the race of my mother and father)

She didn't believe me. She seems convinced that I didn't know what a birth certificate was and kept doing hand gestures of a small piece of paper. She also insisted that my race is stated on it. I know what a birth certificate is and how it looks like thank you very much.

To be honest with you dear readers I have pored over my birth certificate desperately numerous times to have a clear statement on what my race is because this is not the 1st time the question of what race I am has been raised.

The nurse in Hospital Tuaran has also given me a dirty look when I told her I was Indian Kadazan. There was also the time when I was registering into UiTM KK where this one lecturer said in a loud, pompous voice that he suspects that I might not be eligible to enroll into UiTM because of my father's race. In my father's face. He also demanded a copy of my father's surat Mahkamah Anak Negeri stating that my father is a Bumiputera. I still get pissed every time I remember that incident.

Dumb And Dumber Scene 4
Me: Dalam surat beranak saya bangsa bapa saya Indo-Kadazan. (In my birth certificate my father's race is Indo-Kadazan)
Nurse: Hah, Indo-Kadazan? Macam Indonesia pula. (Hah, Indo-Kadazan? Sounds like Indonesian)
My Mum: Dulu Indo tu istilah yang kena guna kalau peranakan India. Lagipun Indon baru Indonesia kan. (Last time Indo is the term used to represent Indian for those who were interracial. Anyway Indonesian is stated as Indon right)
Nurse: Eh, ada juga Indonesia yang guna Indo tau.. Jaga... *In a mean, superior tone of voice* (Hey, there are Indonesian who use the term Indo too you know. Be careful)

In the end she wrote Indo-Kadazan. After raising so many questions.. After upsetting my mum.. If she were to write it down as it is anyway why on earth did she have to be so argumentative in the 1st place? Pelik kan? Alien kali tu nurse tu..

Well, I guess that's all for now peeps. Cheers and wassalam.

P/S: Click here for proof that the word Indo is used to represent India when linked with another place or race.


Anonymous said...

Do they need to be that particular? As I know, we can put the race category under the bumiputra category ja kan.. or under 'other'. But its ok.. cheer up phoebe.. Dont let them spoil your day.. ;p

Amanda Christine Wong said...

i so get u! so i just put the race i randomly feel like being. i either put chinese, bumiputera or lain2 :D. and the more matured me would put Sino-Native. end of story. (tapi i notice kena tukar balik p cina bila dorang nmpk my surname. cilanat!)

Phoebe said...

Germaine: Yup, Government hospitals and clinics seem to be particular about race. It's a pain in the butt for us who r of mixed race. Yeah, I try not to let their idiotic antics get to me. Hehe..

Manda: Tu lah kan? Same here. That's why I put Indian Kadazan when they asked for specifics. They did that? Ikut bapa la kunu tu. Kesian mummy kita kan, tidak kena peduli bangsa dorg.