My First Project as Head Social Media Executive

Admittedly, I was born and raised in an urban bubble. A private institution bubble so to speak. Quite literally, born in a private hospital, attended a vernacular school (which I would argue to be semi-private, my mom donated a shit tonne of money, okay?) and then to a private university. All was well for me, I had a comfortable lifestyle, I had things I needed and wanted, complaints and dissatisfaction about our current state of governance, economy, or politics, though familiar, never really felt immediately relatable to me because how can anyone live comfortably in a country that is doing as bad as they make it sound? But of course, I knew something was not right. knew the casual racism that rolls off my parents’ tongue was not right. I knew something was wrong when it is a taboo for a Chinese girl to date a non-Chinese. Something had to be wrong, right?

See, I am not one for politics, I’ve always felt like politics is just a bunch of grown privileged men fighting to gain power over something that will never truly be theirs, but we can’t deny that politics is related to all we do, can we? That got me thinking, if I had lived in my bubble for so long, only confined my discussions on national issues with people who hold the same views for so long, only kept quiet when I hear people spew racist bullshit for so long, how many more are in this bubble, and how many more that do not realise this bubble even exists? So there we go, I met the Secretary General of Challenger by chance one night (yes, it involves a story about an embarrassing drunken night), and 2 months later I am the Head Social Media Exec of Challenger Malaysia and executing Let’s Talk Politics. I promise you I was probably as confused as anyone could be because I didn’t know a thing about the civil society scene prior to this.

The planning and execution of Let’s Talk Politics took effect in matter of days. Though rushed and sometimes stressful, it was timely because it was something I needed, something Challenger needed, and something I believe my fellow bubble-residents needed. I needed it because I got a crash course on all things Malaysian politics within the span of 2 weeks. Challenger needed it because it was time we rebranded, to overcome this identity crisis that we were facing. My fellow bubble-residents needed it because, well, if you didn’t know what AUKU was, or what PPBM was, or what is going on in politics in general, it’s probably time you start finding out and then you can decide whether you should give a shit. Bottom line, someone had to start getting people to talk for the rest to listen. That was what we did with Let’s Talk Politics.

We approached 17 young Malaysians from different backgrounds, ethnicities, locations, genders, sat them down and well, we talked politics. From the affirmative actions and race based politics in the Peninsular and crossing the South China Sea, to the political climate and representations in East Malaysia. Inevitably, there was always wariness hanging in the air, worrying what was said would be too ‘seditious’, too ‘sensitive’. Ironic, isn’t it? The irony is when we lock people up, suspend students from getting politically involved, police opinions and call ourselves democratic, call ourselves free. Something is broken, and it is high time we break our bubble to fix it.

Sure, it wasn’t easy, and it will never be easy, but Challenger Malaysia is dedicated to let the young people’s voices being heard. Tell us how to reach you, tell us what can we do to give you the content you want to see. We can only go so far without you, so help us make the change we all want to see.

Thank you to all of you who took time out to speak with us and for being part of this project. All of you are doing great things and on behalf of Challenger Malaysia, I wish you all the best in your future endeavours. We are grateful for the effort you are making for our youth and our home, and we will be there with you every step of the way.

Thank you to Reyna Michael who so kindly lent a helping hand when the workload became too heavy to bear. Thank you to our spirited and indomitable Jean Vaneisha, she is the leader every organisation should have, the woman every girl should inspire to be, and the friend everyone should be. Let’s Talk Politics would not have happened without her and I am eternally grateful for the work she has done and is doing for our generation and our home.

Lastly, a special thanks to you, our readers who gave this project the attention it needed and for becoming part of the effort to spread the youth’s voices.

Today on the 16th of September, was the day Sabah, Sarawak, and Malaya came together and formed Malaysia as we know it. We may all have different sentiments to this land we call home but one thing is for sure, Malaysia is the land we call home and we will love it for all it’s flaws and imperfections. Happy Malaysia Day, everyone.

When was the last time you did something for your country?

Jen Hui
Head Social Media Executive

无可否认,我出生以来就一直活在一个自己的世界,一个好像只有私人机构的世界里。出生在私家医院,小学上了华小 (我把它看成私家学校了,我父母捐了一大堆钱好吧),大学也是私家大学。我的生活一直很好,我要的都可以得到,我需要的都不需愁。 别人口中的政治风云,别人口的自私贪污,势力争夺好像都不是属于我世界里情节,因为如果他们口中的异味世界是真的,为什么我二十一年的人生里都天下太平?我当然隐约知道有些事不对劲, 家人的种族主义总是那么不刻意,不同我肤色,不懂我语言的永远是 ”那种人”。什么时候起如果我喜欢的对象是马来人就是一种忌讳,难道踏入成人的世界里就有这些没被说明的游戏规则吗,应该不对吧?

我一直都不在意政治,因为都好像是那些有特权的男人在争一种不会完全属于他们的势力。可是政治与全部都痛痒相关。如果我活在这个与世隔绝的世界里这么久,讨论的时事都是与我世界里的人,那和我一样的人还有多少呢?不发现的人又有多少呢?就这样,机缘巧合下遇到了 Challenger 的 Jean,负责上 Challenger 的所有社交网,我好像踏进一个自己完全不认识的世界,一个向往政治文明的社会。

‘Let’s Talk Politics’ 从计划到实行只用了短短几天,而虽然它的包袱不好背,它的到来却正是时候。我需要它,Challenger 需要它,我们的青年需要它。我需要它因为两个星期内,我对国土的政治了解了。Challenger 需要它因为需要摆脱模糊不清的前程,从新设立新的印象。我们的青年需要它因为一定要有人肯讲,才会有人肯听。



谢谢抽空帮我减轻工作的 Reyna Michael. 谢谢我们的Jean Vaneisha,她是所有团队需要的领袖,她是所有女生需要的榜样,是每个人都需要的朋友。她,是女中豪杰。谢谢你为我们的家,为我们这一辈的所有努力。




Head Social Media Executive