By Zurairi AR
AUG 2 — It seems harder and harder to stay sane in this country, which frankly, seems to operate under the laws of madness which get crazier and crazier with each passing day.
I had thought that the country has reached its peak of insanity just before the May polls, but it has been proven this time that I was dead wrong.
While granting one political side a miniscule majority might have seemed favourable on paper, it is appearing otherwise when the coalition in question is Barisan Nasional (BN).
Winning its worst result election after election has transformed BN into a trapped animal in the throes of death, desperate for approval and votes from the community which it felt has served it well in the last few decades — the Muslim-Malays.
Since the dismal results of Election 2013, Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak and his administration seem to have lost direction together with their guts, their tongues caught by the proverbial cat and unable to effect any strong decisions.
On the other hand, the dying animal is looking for salvation, driven by its populist tendency to just entertain any whims and favours benefiting its patron, the Malay majority.
And the Malays, coincidentally almost all Muslims, happen to carry the biggest insecurities bred after years of indoctrination. Never has a majority group acted like it is the minority, always under siege against some invisible enemies that only they can see.
Add all this together under the current political climate, and this was probably how we came up with such a mad witch-hunting season where those whom some Malays do not agree with can be easily and unfairly persecuted.
It is disturbing how the authorities can now charge almost anybody with anything, just by invoking the flimsy excuse of “insulting Islam.”
In the space of under three weeks, the Malays have demonstrated their bargaining power with the ruling coalition. If there is somebody out there who stokes their fury, regardless whether the anger is rational or not, swift action will be taken against that somebody by the authorities.
It is not so much that the government is pandering to the voice of the majority, but rather to some voices coming from the majority.
The four beauty pageant hopefuls, all Malaysian Muslims, had been the easiest target for bullying by the religious authorities, empowered by the furious public.
The women did not have “Islamic-sounding names.” They were deemed “too sexy.” They did not wear the hijab. They did not have the “right” Muslim look.
Of course, it was also too easy for the righteous to judge that the women were themselves not “real Muslims”, whatever that means.
Above all, they were women. Women who by insisting on contesting in the pageant were defying a misogynistic, biased law essentially made by men and can be punished for “insulting Islam.”
This was one instance of questionable laws, just like many other fatwas
that have been regurgitated by either the state or national fatwa councils. And questionable laws deserve to be questioned.
Despite the muftis’ assurance that any fatwa
can face judicial review, the gesture was made utterly meaningless when any criticism against fatwas
can be slapped with at least a RM3,000 fine or two years’ jail.
It is also apparently seditious for a Muslim dog caretaker to make a Raya greeting with her dogs because dogs are seen as “haram
Except dogs are not “haram
” — nor are they insults to Islam — and these are facts known by many Muslims except for the Malays calling for her blood.
These are actions of an intolerant mob, the same mob who could not even accept Shiites, despite them being Muslims who belong to the second-biggest denomination of Islam in the world.
Not only are Shiites treated with much disdain like any other non-Muslims here — they cannot even preach their beliefs to fellow Muslims — but in the past few weeks much hatred has been flung in their direction after certain states asked to enact anti-Syiah laws.
If Muslims here cannot even accept, respect and be at peace with those who worship the same God as them, what hope is there left for others whom they label infidels, heathens and apostate?
Note that all these state-sanctioned persecutions reached its frenzy after a non-Muslim couple, who wished Muslims breaking fast with pork, were promptly charged under three different laws and initially denied bail.
It was a bad enough decision at that time, but now it has set a dangerous precedent in a country made of people of different beliefs and non-belief, much as some Muslims would like to ignore that fact.
Never forget, that it only takes a simple police report by an angry Muslim for anybody to be accused of “insulting Islam.” And that includes non-Muslims too.
If that is not madness, then I do not know what is.
- See more at: http://www.themalaymailonline.com/op....A7rYitcF.dpuf