The price of race


The Malaysian Insider‘Racist price list’ for golf membership sparks backlash.

On the surface of it, there is overt racism and thus discrimination on the basis of skin colour. But if we read more carefully, the Notice says “Membership for sale”.

As Megat Najmuddin Megat Khas, president of the KGNS said, the membership by racial quota has been fixed at 45% Malay, 35% Chinese and 20% Indians and Others (presumably Eurasian, Thai and Ang-mor) to ensure a decent racial mix. Re-sale of membership has to comply with maintaining the racial quota, meaning Malays may only sell to Malays, while Chinese and Indians may likewise sell to Chinese and Indians respectively. I have no problem with the club’s policy on this racial quota.

On the price list itself, one could argue that because memberships for Chinese and Indians are more limited at respectively 35% and 20% (or less), the private re-sale cost of membership in these rarer categeory would be far more expensive, explaining why Kandasamy’s membership (limited to 20% or less) is sold at RM15,000 more than Ah Chong.

However, I cannot understand why an Indian has to pay RM60,000 to 80,000 while someone classified as ‘Other’, basically in the same category as Indians, can buy a membership for only RM40,000 to 50,000?