November 14, 2017
A Youth’s Take – A weekly column by Zaidi Azmi
“IF you have it, flaunt it” seems to be the mantra among millennials.
Frankly, there’s nothing wrong about splashing one’s lavish lifestyle on social media.
Unless of course, if your parents are either government officials or politicians – because that is when things can get pretty ugly.
Like how an affluent grandchild of a certain former prime minister was cruelly shoved into the limelight for posting pictures of a yacht her father bought her.
Or like how the youngest son of a minister showed off his suave Lamborghini along with a #WorkHardPlayHard on Instagram.
While public display of wealth has yet to be considered a crime, excessive showcase of enviable richness can dent their parents’ political career.
Honestly, how do you expect fence sitters to genuinely believe that the country is on a brink of bankruptcy now that we know a prominent opposition leader had just bought his daughter a yacht.
Or how off-putting it is to hear ministers urging the people to spend wisely in times of economic uncertainties when we’re fed with a barrage of photos of their children posing with RM1.8 million state-of-the-art race car.
Against these oxymoron, it’s no wonder why Merdeka Centre pointed out that the bulk of the 2.5 million youths – that have yet to register as voters – distrusted politicians from both sides of the fence.
But for what it’s worth, these wealthy millennials are not at fault; after all they’re just kids and putting them on a trial by media, no matter how tempting it may be, is a heartless thing to do.
While blaming or suing the media seems to be the most predictable way to go about it, let’s address the elephant in the room.
The actual culprit who made these children susceptible to politically-motivated attacks is none other than their own politician of a parent.
Let’s face it, it is highly unlikely that a politician’s family can avoid prying eyes, poo flingers and dirt diggers.
So it boggles the mind why such a trend continues to happen despite the fact that a number of politicians have landed in hot soup due to their family members’ public display of wealth on social media.
It’s as if none of these politicians and their family members have taken heed of this year’s graft probe against a PKR branch leader over his RM1.2 million Disney-castle-like bungalow right smack in Kampung Melayu Ampang.
Why is it so hard for politicians to tell their children “hey look, daddy is a politician and some of your Instagram posts can get daddy into trouble, so would you be a dear and make that post private or better still don’t post it at all?”
Seriously, allowing your child to post an Instagram video of you and her petting a dolphin at a posh water park in Qatar weeks after you were ousted from a ministerial post for allegedly being out of touch with the people, is political suicide.
In the kampung I grew up in, we call it “saja cari penyakit” (begging for trouble).
If Zaidi Azmi isn’t busy finding his ways in the city, this 26 year-old northern kampung boy can be found struggling to make some sense of the Malaysian political scene. Zaidi can be reached via email: firstname.lastname@example.org.