There was one time when we had a Japanese class. I don`t remember when, but at that instant the teacher asked (in translation):
Sensei: …Malaysian have Proton (national) car. ..So do you like Proton’s car?
Then one of my classmates answered:
Student :…We don`t like Proton’s car. We like Toyota, Honda’s car. Proton`s like a walking `coffin’.
I might not seem a bit stubborn, nor it is negligible, but how could we even insult our own national product? I would consider the comment as just to flatter the teacher, but it really does give a big impression to any foreigner.
Since the early beginning of the World War One (WW1), the Japanese realized that revolution is important if they wish not to be colonized by the westerner. So in 1932, they have established several companies such as Nissan, Mitsubishi and Kawasaki. Others companies begun established following rapid economy growth. Later they decided to developed military equipment when they realized war against the Allied is unavoidable. When they suffered from defeat in 1945, and what`s left were no more than ashes and debris, future for the Japanese child and youth seemed hopeless. However, out from nowhere, Japanese had came out through a long way, using what`s left from war and again, built their country.
So, the question now is that how loyal are the Japanese toward their country? Most Japanese choose to buy the Japanese made car, bikes, food and others. Even I`ve seen one of the Japanese teacher used to carry a box full of Pilot`s utensil, they refuse to use other`s product which is not made in Japan. If they have cars here in Malaysia and broke down, I believe they will order the spare part from their country.
Well, I`m not saying that we should emphasize on the Japanese product, but how well are we when it comes to patriotism? Most of us choose to buy BMW, Honda, Mercedez rather that Proton`s. Most of us choose to buy Panasonic or LG rather than KHIND. Government bought fighter jets from Sukhoi, never had a wish to build themselves. As a matter of fact, most of the product in the market came from overseas. The question now is how well are our perspective when it comes to local product. Unfortunately, it is our own made mind setting that our product is not worth at all, easily broken, scratched, torn, shattered and etc.
Maybe some are right, but does it sound too hypocrite that we didn`t even acknowledges our own local oriented product? The local talented engineers who were governmentally supported, that went overseas, study for many years, then came back to hometown? Then trying to implement all they could remember in their study and researches, then have made a product that were not even worth preferred by our own peoples? It`s the same thing that the Japanese had realized long before we do, or maybe something we didn`t realized at all. And that was the reason behind their full support for their local product.
In several years to come, we all might be graduated and worked as an engineer. And when that time comes, remember one thing: are we going to Japan just to be graduated, have a good life and jobs and live happily? Or is it because we believe in a change that end our decades of our dilemma?