Dr Ling held their attention further when he narrated a recent visit to a disco in
Kuala Lumpur to see for himself the
influence of Ecstasy pills on
“The speakers in were big and loud. Its
boom, boom, boom all the time (referring to techno music).
“Everything shakes, the floor shakes, the
youngsters shake their heads and backsides,'' he said, drawing laughter
from the audience.
There was laughter again as Dr Ling assured the listeners that he was at the
disco to personally see the situation
and “not to drink or dance.''
The seriousness of the situation was underlined when Dr Ling warned the people
of the consequence of such social
ills a generation of Chinese youths
would be lost.
The implications are greater considering
that the Chinese population is declining, with most newly-wed Chinese couples
preferring to have only one or two children.
“We cannot have young people returning
home at 6am or 7am and expect them to be
productive at work or at school,'' Dr Ling said.
His advice to errant businessmen is
“make your money from other trades.''
Don't destroy the young which may include their own children.
His concern is understandable. Besides
health problems, especially among long term Ecstasy pill takers, a
myriad of social woes will follow.
For the past few weeks, Dr Ling's main
message when addressing the Chinese community is: let's fight the
scourge of Ecstasy pills and
horse-racing slot machines together.
Travelling around the country, he has
urged grassroots leaders to take on these problems.
In urban areas, the concern of the party is
Chinese youths taking Ecstasy pills at discos while in small towns and villages, it is
the draw of gaming machines.
It has been estimated that Chinese youths
make up 90% of Ecstasy pill takers and
those who gamble away on slot machines.
Dr Ling said the police had been ordered
to clamp down on those who sell Ecstasy
pills or operate the machines.
Deputy Home Minister Datuk Chor Chee
Heung, who heads the MCA social problems
committee, has been given the task to tackle these problems.
So far, the results have been encouraging.
In Raub and Kuantan, for example, a total of 481 slot machines had been sealed.
The next step is to make sure that these
outlets stay closed. It is meaningless if the gaming machines reappear when the heat dissipates.
If villagers suspect the involvement of police officers and the local
authorities in abetting gaming-machine
operators, then they should lodge
reports with the Anti-Corruption Agency or alert the media.
The public can also write directly to Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri
Norian Mai if they feel that enforcement
is slack in their village or town.
These social problems have reached a level where drastic action is
A follow-up awareness campaign in the
form of messages in videos and a road show will boost the party's efforts further.
The MCA could organise exhibitions to inform the public about the harmful
effects of Ecstasy pills and what can be
done to stop this menace.
Closing down discos, night-spots and cybercafes is not the answer proper enforcement by the authorities is more
For example, there are limited forms of
entertainment and no discos in PAS-controlled Kelantan but the state has
one of the highest number of drug abuse
and AIDs cases.
Too much control, as everyone knows, can
be bad. The only source of entertainment
left for the young in Kelantan appears to be infamous Golok which is hardly recommended.
If the MCA, with the support of the authorities and the public, continues to
sustain the momentum of its campaign
against Ecstasy pills and gaming machines, the battle can be won.
These two concerns should be seen from a
broader perspective. If left unchecked, the rot will eventually spread to the other