Please give back our children at least a chance to dream as Myanmar
Myanmar Government, Military, Rakhines and even the so called Democrats from NLD are labeling us as guest citizens, ‘Kala’, Bengali-illegal-migrants or mixed blooded persons or not pure citizens. They are planning to start a massive selective enforcement operation to downgrade us into second or third grade citizens in the coming census.
That, however, could not make us, or people like us, to become non Burmese Citizens. We are Burmese citizens no matter how some might disagree, or wish otherwise or decreed by force. Whether mixed blooded or not is not important in the eyes of the whole world but U Thein Sein’s Government could not deny our right of 100% pure Burmese citizenship with retroactive legislation.
The common law jurisdictions do not permit retroactive legislation. Ex post facto laws are expressly forbidden by the United States Constitution. (Wiki) General Aung San, Former Prime Minister U Nu, First President Sao Shwe Theik and Former President U Ba Oo had declared that the Myanmar Muslims are Tine Yin Thar Citizens or Ethnic Nationals, present governments could not remove those pronouncements now and declare or made the Myanmar Muslims not the Ethnic National and even demote into Second or third Grade Citizens.
We and all the other persons like us, not just those Indians, Chinese, Bengalis or Pakistanis, although we are undeniably mixed blooded immigrants’ children or descendants of immigrants, but our ancestors already had full Burmese Citizenships. No matter what some majority in power with bigot or racist ideas with Xenophobia might say contrary.
Our great grandparents and all the ancestors were loyal citizens of Burma and all of them were and are holding the Burmese National Registration Cards or ‘Ah Myo Thar Mhat Pone Tin Cards’ before. My brothers and sisters’ family members are holding those Burmese National Registration Cards but now the Myanmar Apartheid Régime is planning to order and issue the differently formatted cards for their younger children. It is curious when the parents and elder brothers and sisters are the same citizens as our Burmese Buddhists at least on paper but now only their youngest children are blatantly or brazenly discriminated as different from others and their own elder siblings.
This racial discrimination is practiced on not only Muslims but on Chinese and Hindus. Myanmar National Registration officers decreed that if anyone is not Buddhist, could not claim to be pure blooded and all the Burmese Muslims must be recorded as mixed blooded persons or Bengali or Indian or Pakistan. When even our great grandparents were not born or had never visited to those faraway foreign lands, it is not fair for our grand children to be labeled as aliens or worse as illegal immigrants. They all must be enlisted as mixed blooded Indian, Pakistan or Bengali. So it is blatant Racial Discrimination or openly practicing Apartheid practice of Myanmar Government.
I left Myanmar because of these endless discriminations but sad to see my nephews, nieces and their children are forced to begin their journey of life differently from their elder siblings and face the reality of the unfair world. We believe that no one has that right to practice the issuing of Apartheid certificate or new type of Registration different from other citizens to our children. By doing so, Myanmar Government is clearly starting to commit a racial profiling, derogatory name calling, delivering Hate Speeches and might later lead to commit Genocide offence.
Our children are entitled to their dreams and should not encounter any disappointments even before they started their tender lives. We wonder how that single document would change their dreams or what would be their vision of their world or Myanmar excluding them or shutting out all of them from all the opportunities. It is our children’s turning points of their lives. Myanmar Government ruthlessly had shown them who they are, why and how they are not welcomed in Burma/Myanmar. Most importantly, Myanmar Government has shown our children a real rejection. In waking to this realization, we suddenly understand that Myanmar Government has already failed all our children’s future. As our children journey into an uncertain future, they will struggle and grapple with their sense of their rightful place in this Myanmar nation.
The constant emphasis on differences by the narrow minded Myanmar apartheid racists who could not see value in these children prevent them from being seen, seeing themselves, as anything other than Burmese Citizens. And so Myanmar Government’s dancing with shadows continues, to their pied-piper song of unity and integration in single race and religion, to the beat of their war drums, changing Burma into a Myanmar world of so much bigotry and hatred. Our young children’s every early moments would be yet under another hammer blow, tempering or compromising their fantastic visions into listless and endless compromise under Racist Myanmar Government and “democratic” cohorts in NLD.
Our country’s diversity makes us who we are and what we are today, that cannot be emphasized enough. And though we Burmese Muslims may each resonate differently, harmonizing only at some points in time and never universally, that is we are completely burmanized culturally but differ in religion only but I am sure when we dream we dream as Myanmar only because we know Myanmar, we love Myanmar, and Myanmar only is in our heart and mind.
Successive Burmese Kings had accepted us as their loyal subjects or citizens, after Independence U Nu’s government had accepted us. And General Aung San had even promised us: “I want to address theIndians and Chinese residing in this country. We have no bitterness, no ill will for them, or for that matter for any race and nationality in the world. If they choose to join us, we will welcome them as our own brethren. The welfare of all people of this country irrespective of race or religion has always been the one purpose that I have set out to fulfill. In fact it is my life’s mission.”
But sadly those illegitimate successive illegal Military Régimes and its successor after a “Re-Branding PR Exercise”, new Myanmar Government is continuing to practice the Apartheid System which may later lead to Genocide like they have done on Muslims in Rakhine.
I could guarantee to all of our Myanmar friends that we are all Myanmar in our heart and we have no intention or imagination to even support the foreign countries believed to be the homeland of our ancient ancestors even if Myanmar is at war with them!
Please give back our children at least a chance to dream. Please do not shut off their future.