Excerpts from his column that appeared in the NST on Wednesday:
The term "ketuanan Melayu" has had the misfortune of attracting the English translation of "Malay supremacy".
Malay supremacy tends to be loosely and harshly associated at some levels with white supremacy and that of right-wing movements across the world.
Really, the overarching, unifying theme of ketuanan Melayu had been "empowerment" or, as an inspiring writer from a different time defined it, Malay sovereignty -- chronicling the self-determination of a people brought under colonial rule for four centuries.
Perhaps the equal of ketuanan Melayu is Black Empowerment that greeted the end of apartheid in South Africa.
During the early days of Perkasa circa post-March 2008, there was already a concern that the phrase "Ketuanan Melayu" might be used against the Malays. In one Perkasa forum that I covered, a professor (now deceased) told his audience that the concept did not mean Malay Supremacy. "Try Malay primacy, it's perhaps a more accurate translation," he said.
Syed Zahari, one of the longest ISA detainees in Singapore or Malaysia, once told an interview that it's not Ketuanan Melayu that the Malays (or UMNO) should be concerned about. It's Kepimpinan Melayu (Malay leadership), he said.
Read Rashid Yusof's The realities of politics and race.