Saturday, 4 October 2008

Playing Race & Religion to the (Absurd) Hilt ...

He is very much a man of the modern world, breaking traditional stereotypes Malaysians may have about PAS. Khalid even has an Internet following, and maintains a lively blog at He is definitely at the center of both PAS' internal strategic discussions as well as the party's attempts to reach beyond the Malay/Muslim community.
It only remains to be seen if the new approach personified by Khalid and his colleagues will be accepted by PAS as a whole. Khalid's openness is not without its critics. PAS like Umno has its extreme forces – who see this as a backsliding on the party’s Islamist origins and who prefer to pursue a Malay Muslim “unity” agenda with the latter.
- (By KARIM RASLAN/ MySinchew)

Blogger “Sammy”, reported to be a 22 year old employee in a Kuala Lumpur advertising firm, was reported to have posted anti-Indian sentiments on her blog, Life is a Drama.
On the other hand, Raja Petra Kamarudding (RPK), is said to be in detention under the (ISA) because his writings ‘ridiculed Islam’.

While some of these - like Sammy who herself admits she’s a racist at times -are genuine cases of racism, others have been used by the authority to curb dissenting voices. The concern on racial polarisation and anger on incidences of racism has caused the government to moot a Race Relations Act.

-"Malaysia: Outrage at racist blogger" posted by Daniel Chandranayagam on Oct 03, 2008 in Global Voices Advocacy

To Khalid Samad from PAS - Bravo!
This is the "inclusive and compassionate" face of Islam that would help PAS build its credibility in the eyes of all Malaysians.
However, you have an uphill task in convincing the likes of "you know who", of this approach which, doesn't quite gel with certain sectarian interests. The Islamic political party you envision may not be exactly what appeals to those on the other side - as an earlier article said that the "Erdogans" of PAS are viewed with "suspicion" or something like that ....

People like Khalid and Husam have their hands full and their work cut out for them - as do the other groups, that are prone to be "sensitized" with these "sensitive issues/ provocations" which apparently "have the authorities very concerned" ..... hence the mooted "Race Relations Act".

It should be a mission of greatest urgency among PAS members to reassure the non-Muslims that their rights would never be trampled upon - just as it is for DAP to reciprocate and be more inclusive in their political ideas/approach.
The credibility of PAS and DAP is now, for Umno, the most feared element in Pakatan Rakyat! Despite PKR/Anwar's dominance, it was the organization and passion of PAS and DAP that that they rode upon - and it will be a grave error on part of PR to neglect this fact.

In days to come there will be greater concerted attempts by "certain subversive elements" at dividing the people and creating distrust - more so in Pakatan Rakyat ruled states. The widespread use of "anti-social mercenaries" cannot be ruled out - in fact, it should be anticipated.
It is not unlikely that smooth and slick attempts will be made by certain quarters (also through the MSM, of course!), to create an element of fear and distrust, so as to exhibit "the need for a BN/ Racist Goverment", the NEP and the barbaric ISA.

In recent days, there have been plenty of apparently "pro-active" action taken by the Home Minister on "enemies" of Islam/ Teresa Kok and reporters of Mainstream racism (for "protection" only though!). Blogger RPK is admittedly, still under ISA (and not - "said to be" as Daniel writes).
And also of course, then we suddenly have temple demolishing issue with the massacred and shamed MIC guys leading a "protest"!

I have serious misgivings about the "report" by this "freelancing" Daniel in Global Voices Advocacy, about a 22 y.o. kid who blogs (the Blog has since been made "private").
It seems like he attempts to "paint a picture" for the readers' mind- look at how he has worded his piece:-
- Malaysia: Outrage at racist blogger
- Blogger “Sammy”, reported to be a 22 year old employee
- (RPK), is said to be in detention under the (ISA) because his writings ‘ridiculed Islam’. (not allegedly "ridiculed Islam", mind you!)
-Sammy who herself admits she’s a racist at times -are genuine cases of racism,
The concern on racial polarisation and anger on incidences of racism has caused the government to moot a Race Relations Act.

An obscure blogger - that too, a kid - lets out her frustration with a stereotype image, (mainly because she lost a handphone), and ..... voila! - Hindraf jumps into the fray with police reports!!!
It is a personal blog - which supposedly isn't at all "socio-political" in nature, for gottsakes ....
It is reported/ highlighted by an "experienced journalist" - Daniel - as a "Racist" blogger!
Is this an attempt to stereotype bloggers who just wish to express themselves?

Don't fall into this trap - they'll try in the coming days to create an atmosphere of insecurity (& fear for PAS/ Islamic organisations) among the non-Muslims.
Now, the arrest of the recent "medicine man" murders - they are suddenly linked to Al-Arqam (despite being denied by the murderer, the police apparently "found a picture of Ashaari")- I'm sure the Scotland Yard or FBI couldn't have done it better!
The MSM has already done a good job in reporting it - they have even given a timeline on "Islamist activities" during the Mahathir years .... to make the association to ant-social/extremist activity, convenient and simple!
The "Lingams" are there to write the judgement, and problem solved - QED!
All we need is a Kangkung, to give a face to the bench, and signature on the judgement .......
So who needs the courts, right?

Definitely reminds me of the "good ol' days" - Wonder what happened to the inquiry on the weapons cache taken from the army for "Al-Maunah" ... or was it "KMM". Maybe it comes under OSA or something like that - so it's better we don't ask, right?
Who was the defense minister then, again?
Very nice job it was - just when Mahathir needed the support of "chinese/indians/non-muslims" to save his sorry political @$$, and paint Islam black in the eyes of non-Muslims. The political party that would pay the price for this would inevitably be ... Bingo - you guessed right - it's none other than PAS!!
These groups must have been a Godsend or something for Mahathir ..... (and Umno Baru of course)!!

The Race factor or the "5.13 bogeyman" didn't get them votes/popularity before or after March 8 - so, Religion it is!
Be careful, PAS/ DAP - this is a tried and tested plan of action.
The same goes for other religious groups/ communities too ......
You'll probably see more "religious/sensitive issues" crop up in the coming days, to justify ISA or some other barbaric law - maybe we need a MYOB Act, Don't Even Ask Act or STFU Act ....... that'll be so cool, and Malaysians can live happily ever after, just like in the fairy tales.
Who cares if hatred and mutual suspicion is propagated by ruling politicians - these laws and more will "keep the peace", right?

To Malaysiakini/Athi Veranggan - it was totally cheap of you to report/sensationalize the kid's blog issue!!
Lastly, to Hindraf’s Penang coordinator, MN Anbalgan, and information chief, S Vadi Velan, who lodged a police report in Butterworth against the blogger’s posting,
- Shame on You for picking a fight with kids.
Next you'll be reporting on school kids' quarrels!
Freakin' Grow Up, guys!!
You're creating issues out of nothing, to the benefit of the sectarian politics of some people (who incidently, you may have a lot in common with)!
Why don't you guys do something more constructive and report on the public toilet of the Butterworth bus terminal for a change, instead of peeking into people's blogs ~ forget what the tourists with me thought - it was stinking, filthy and broken (despite charging 20sen for use)!
I'm sure you're good for it .....