January 20, 2010

MALAYSIA: "Table law to make children care for parents"

. SELANGOR, Malaysia / The Star / Opinion / January 20, 2010 Table law to make children care for parents WHAT has happened to our younger generation? As an adolescent myself, I am saddened by a few cases reported lately. I came across the report of a daughter abandoning her father at a dialysis centre. On the very same day, another senior citizen was left at a bus stop by his own son. The old man, who had just undergone heart surgery, was sent out of the house because his presence had caused marital problems. That is not the end of it. I couldn’t help but shake my head in disbelief when I read the report of a lady teacher being slapped and attacked by three students. Why are these things happening in a developing country like Malaysia with civilised people? What are the causes and who should be blamed? Should we blame the education system for failing to instill filial piety and respect towards the elderly? Indeed, we can easily blame the education system but at the same time, parents do need to take responsibility to build their children’s character. Then again, the possibility of parents teaching their children to abandon them in their old age and to act violently is near zero. So, who should we blame? Maybe the media is to blame. Young people love picking up other cultures. Just to name a few – movies, magazines and the Internet. They might be one of the sources that give them the idea to disown and “dispose” of their parents as well as to turn on their teachers. Western countries usually have a good social security and welfare system so that pensioners do not need their children’s support to survive as they are well taken care of. Unless this system is implemented in Malaysia, our elderly would definitely suffer. Photo credit: SeniorsAloud I feel strongly that a new legislation should be passed to check such a trend. You may think this will be a radical move but think again. We only hear about parents being fined or imprisoned for abandoning their children, but have we heard about punishment being meted out on children who abandoned their parents? [rc] JKYA, UKM. Copyright © 1995-2010 Star Publications (M) Bhd