Linguists have studied about how to justify Manglish properly (even though it is hard to do so~) and the role of this creole language in the local society. The reality is local people are not aware about this as it became a norm of using Manglish in our daily lives, we feel more comfortable when communicating in Manglish, just like our second mother tongue.
We do learn proper English in school, tuition center, university, online courses, etc. So, we know how to differentiate proper English and Manglish. However, we only use proper English when we are attending classes, sitting for oral test or having some kind of formal events. Apart from these, we tend to use casual English, talk to each others, where we find it is the way to express ourselves spontaneously.
In Manglish, some of the grammar rules are borrowed from Mandarin or Chinese dialects such as “I go first” and it is common to hear people saying: “Let’s go to pasar (market)!”.
A linguist shared her shopping experience dealing with a sales lady:
“I was once seeking to purchase shoes in Petaling Jaya. I had selected two potential purchases and asked of what they were made.
The sales lady indicated the cheap pair: “This one cow” and the expensive pair: “This one deer”. Sometimes compassion is selective; emotionally I can handle wearing a piece of bovine skin better than deer. So I told the sales lady that I couldn’t wear the deer but could wear the cow. Evidently, she did not discern much integrity in my reasoning and asked:”Deer cannot’ah? How come cow can?”
Now that is REAL Malaysian English! Don’t tell me that it is bad English! That lady communicated in a way that left me speechless with admiration! HOW COME COW CAN?” – the alliteration and the economy of the utterance… so Malaysian and so communicative! (The Star~ Linguist: It’s okay to speak Manglish)
This conversation seems hilarious and but they somehow make a perfect sense to local people.
Therefore, some have argued that keep using Manglish is to preserve our local identity, whereas some people have claimed that using Manglish has caused misunderstanding when communicating with foreign visitors.