Netizens feel need for filial piety law

  • Nation
  • Wednesday, 15 Jan 2014

PETALING JAYA: When it comes to filial obligation, Malaysians feel a law would best protect aged parents from being abandoned by their children.

They believe that the law on filial piety, which has been the strength in most Asian families, is needed because of the lack of love and empathy some children have towards their parents in the ever changing social environment.

“A law is needed to regulate human behaviour. We got to have some safeguards for these poor parents because love between parents and children isn't enough anymore.

"It needs to become regulated responsibility,” said Kidi Kido who responded to The Star Online's Facebook query on whether Malaysia should follow Singapore in having a law such as Maintenance of Parents Act to enforce filial piety.

Misnah Lamat says: “No aged parents should be on their own when they can't look after themselves. They have given all their love and care. How could their children not be thankfull?”

Ong Joo Parn agrees: “Bad parents still need care too. Who are we to play God to determine whether our parents deserve care or not? Filial piety is not karma. It's not something you should judge and weigh.”

Nelly Lim highlighted a case she knew of a parent who were not cared for by any of their 10 children after all the love and care they have showered them.

Jaann Khann agrees that times are changing. “Don’t expect the same loyalty from the younger generations. People change. Things do take a turn when children get married and their life and needs become their priority.

“The law is not going to cause damage but at least I know that when I get old I have something to protect my rights than to beg for money from the children. I am all for the Maintenance of Parents Act,” said Jaann.

Zafer Abdul Rahman believes that parents should be protected from being abandoned by their children.

“If we have Child Acts and UN Conventions on rights of children, then we should have, or ought to have, a similar convention for the elderly,” he said.

However, there are those who feel different about laws on filial piety.

Siva Sankar Sinniah said that "it’s sad that all the religious upbringing, Asian values, humanitarianism values are no help any longer and that “we have to have a law” to make sure that parents are cared for. 

Jimmy Ho said that good parents deserve to be cared for but not bad parents. 

Yi Liang revealed that he will be “disturbed” if such a law was passed, especially in cases of children who suffered from severe abuse in the hands of their parents.

Yi Liang believes that a law on filial piety should be assessed on a case-by-case basis, and exemptions provided for certain instances.

Share your views on whether Malaysia needs a Maintenance of Parents Act.

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