Malaysians would always get excited whenever a foreigner has something nice to say about our country. One tourist praised our TBS station comparing it to an airport while an American content creator claimed that Malaysia’s food is the best out of all the countries she has visited.
However, there have been some disagreements with these foreigners’ praises with some believing them to be disingenuous. While a statement such as one from this foreigner would normally receive great feedback from locals, this time, many seemed to disagree with what he had to say.
Yesterday morning (Thursday, 8th February), a man from the Netherlands named Danny Postma tweeted about his experience walking around Kuala Lumpur. In his post, he said, “This is why I love Kuala Lumpur so much. It’s insanely walkable. Lots of parks, and airconned walking tunnels that are separated from the traffic. Everything is connected and you aren’t required to take the metro or taxi. Can’t get that in Bangkok.”
In the same post, he shared two photos; a screenshot of the amount of steps he took according to the Apple Fitness app and a photo of a cafe not too far from The Exchange TRX. Normally, posts from foreigners praising KL would excite the locals but this time around, many disagreed with the foreign photographer’s points, arguing that KL is not all that walkable.
As seen in the screenshots below, some pointed out that only certain areas of KL are considered pedestrian-friendly, especially around the main city where most things are just within walking distance from one another. Others said that only tourists and foreigners would make such a statement as locals could not even afford to live in those luxurious areas.
One netizen defended Danny saying that the Dutchman only mentioned KL in his post and not the whole of Klang Valley so his opinion of the city being walkable is still valid. Another said that he was comparing the city to Bangkok and therefore made sense why and how Kuala Lumpur is more walkable.
After the post went viral, Danny himself replied to his own Tweet saying that he was not expecting it to evoke anger among the locals but understood that outside the city centre may not be as convenient for pedestrians. We partially agree that certain areas of KL are pretty walkable but we’d definitely need a ride for some places.
What’s your take on this discussion?