We are a nation full of great people, talent and prospects; but there are certain things which as a nation, Malta just doesn’t do well.
It is very easy to become over patriotic and to never criticise or disparage anything Malta or the Maltese do; but that would be very short sighted and it would definitely not help us move forward.
Here are five things, I, as a half Maltese, half Scottish person have noticed we do.
We Follow Politics Blindly: We get on one of the gravy trains and let it lead us down a blue or red river till kingdom come – and that is wrong. We feel angry when we read or hear anything that doesn’t glorify our party of choice, and we are not able to pick and choose the battles we should be a part of. Our party says “no” to civil rights and we go on a crusade against those who don’t oppose it; our party says “yes” to spring hunting, and all of a sudden we don’t give two flips about the birds. True, politics are not black and white, or, rather, blue or red, but a palette of colours.
We Openly Accept What’s Wrong: We think it is okay to assume that all coloured people in Malta are irregular migrants or that irregular migrants should be treated disrespectfully. We also think that it’s okay to dis people (based on their skin colour, culture or class) on Facebook because it’s, well, Facebook. But, it’s not okay… it’s wrong.
We Think Everyone But Us Is A Hamallu: Everyone thinks that the ‘hamalli’ (‘chavs’ is the closest word to its meaning) is ‘the other’, when in reality, most people who think of the ‘hamalli’ as ‘hamalli’ are hamalli themselves. It takes some cheek for a woman with eyeliner up to her hairline or a man with neon lights decorating his car to call other people hamalli, but hey, they do it! We ALL do it.
We Think Giving Money Is Charity: It’s a form of charity, granted, but it doesn’t mean it’s enough. Charity truly does begin at home, by being understanding and patient and willing to help your neighbour (even if your neighbour is gay, a migrant or an unmarried woman with five kids). We can hardly say that the Maltese have a heart of gold when we cheer politicians for letting other human beings drown. Think about it …
We Don’t Accept Criticism: If your blood is boiling as much as mine right now, then you’ll know this to be true. We are all happy to offer ‘constructive’ criticism to others, to judge and put down other people’s work, but we can’t accept it about our own. We’re fine to point our fingers at Chinese culture and say ‘Ew, those people eat dogs!’ but God forbid someone said ‘You guys eat rabbit? That’s sick!’
Criticism is essential for growth and advancement and we need to learn from that. Having said that, I could come up with 100 horrible things other nations and cultures do, so don’t take it personally. Smile, take something from this and let’s move on!
What do you think of James’s 5? Do you disagree with any of them? Would you add anything to them? Let us know in the comments’ section.