I have reflected again on what I wrote in my last post, about Singapore Malays begin less easy to get along with nowadays, compared to 30 more more years ago during my younger days. I must say, in all justice, that I know many Malays who are as friendly and 'mild' (i.e. not militant) as those that I called my best friends in the days of my youth. Now, I even know a person who teaches religious lessons at a Mosque. In my conversations with him, I have found him to be anything but extreme. Instead, he goes for 'secular' courses to upgrade himself, thinks of a whole bunch of options, not quite decided yet, of where to head towards - career-wise. Obviously he is not quite the same as those Malays I have known a long time ago, where striking out on a high performance career was the last thing on their minds. As a religious teacher, he was anything but militant in his outlook nor extreme in his views. And there is one other I know who is so full of life and fun and enthusiasm for life. Being around her can be infectious, and she doesn't spout militancy or separateness. In fact, I have seen recent photos of her in China sans the Tudung - a form of the hijab worn among Malay women. I don't think she is being a hypocrite - just being pragmatic.
I do not want to generalize. There is ample evidence to show that some Malays have become 'apart' but there are others who still are very much my fellow citizen, if not a friend who lives next door. And they can even be nicer than your own kind in some respects. So in this sense, Singapore's race policy has succeeded. While a bad apple may spoil the whole basket of them, there remains a certain resilience in the "regardless of race, language or religion" ethos that has characterized Singapore for well over 40 years.
If this were not so, Singaporeans will be making a bee-line for the exit.
In a sense, this is not Lee Kuan Yew's Singapore, it is S Rajaratnam's Singapore.