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The Islamic political race

 | August 4, 2012

These are ruthless politicians who are trying to play God, and the minute they are in power, they need to restrict Muslims from moving out of line.

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Gerakan vice-president Dr Teng Hock Nan has accused the Pakatan Rakyat-led state governments of moving towards Islamist governance.

Citing the Kuala Selangor District Council (MDKS) prohibiting unmarried Muslim couples from sitting together in cinema halls, he said Pakatan had failed to understand the sensitivities of non-Muslim communities.

It was merely a notice to remind non-married Muslim couples from sitting together. It sounds rather harmless, but is it really, for a multi-religious country like Malaysia?

Would such harmless notices be the norm one day on Malaysia Airlines, restaurants, stadiums, water parks and concert halls, or only reserved for dark places like cinemas? Will there be moral policing in the future once such policies become law?

Some time back there was talk of a ban on alcohol beverages at 7-eleven outlets, while Subang Jaya Municipal Council (MPSJ) made known its intention to ban Muslims from working at entertainment outlets with liquor licences.

The P Ramlee Auditorium also has a ruling to ban performances with religious elements. Somehow, all this seems to be the norm for a country like Malaysia in the 21st century.

Men will not get to show off their hairy sexy legs anymore. There will be no more Manchester United fans in the country. Anything that looks or sounds like a cross would be banned. Women too may be discouraged from driving, riding a motorcycle or bicycle or be seen alone in public.

Astro Channels will see heavy editing on the intimate parts, but the gore and bloody killings would still be intact. International live concerts would be a thing of the past.

Barriers would be built to prevent Muslims from encroaching near red light districts and casinos with their bright neon lights and sin-city temptations. Moral squads will be lurking around ready to pounce onto bushes.

Malaysia in the present

Wayang Kulit and certain dances have been banned due to religious elements. Yoga too is not spared, while the Poco Poco dance is outlawed in Perak. Entertainment outlets have been unceremoniously termed as sin outlets.

Today, we have swimming pools that are not unisex. And most hotels or public pools that cannot afford two pools have alternate days drawn up for men and women. Swimming pools are definitely off the list for family pastimes in certain states. Cinemas will also cease to be a family get-together one day.

Separate checkout counters in supermarkets and separate seating in cinemas, and buses, planes and ferries may also be the norm in the future.

Women will be fined or abused by moral squads for forgetting their headscarves when they leave home.

But Muslims are not so particular. They would stay at home and ignore the world around them, save some money for the Haj and watch a quiet scary movie, and perform their obligatory prayers.

The younger ones would stay out late into the night, watch football, or join the Mat Rempits racing into the night, and some may be tempted to smoke a joint. Young ladies would stare wide-eyed and be engrossed with Facebook.

The old tradition of “arranged marriages” would return as romantic liaisons are frowned upon.

Enslavement of the race

One suspects that most of what is happening to this country is due to political interference as Umno tries to outdo PAS in its attempt to convince conservative Muslims of its relevance.

Political parties cannot wait to form the government, so that they can implement more laws to restrict the movement of the Muslims. We fail to understand why political parties are so distrustful of their fellow Muslims that they have to enact more laws to try and protect them from the temptations of sin.

These are ruthless politicians who are trying to play God, and the minute they are in power, they need to restrict Muslims from moving out of line.

Some have perceived it to be some sort of mind control to enslave the Malay mind. Umno tried this tactic and ended up with many Muslims sympathising with PAS.

But some PAS politicians are more than trigger-happy to do exactly the same thing if they come into power. Brainwashing them (the Malays) or conditioning them to think and act like drones, without questioning the status quo. Anyone that does not think like them, are automatically characterised as “backsliding Muslims”.

Muslims in the modern world

We are living in the age of Transformers, Apple iPads and iPhones, and instant 4G Internet connectivity at blazing speeds, not in the Middle Ages riding on camels. But politicians cannot trust Muslims to live their lives in peace, or to allow them the benefit of the doubt.

Politicians must come to terms that they are elected to serve the people, and not to enslave them. Muslims have every right to live their lives, without having to endure the ever more stifling laws to restrict them.

We simply cannot create a sin-free clinical environment for them. Politicians should learn to trust Muslims, instead of treating them as weak-minded, sex-crazed, unable to resist temptation, ready to claw at each other in dark cinemas. They must learn to respect the rights of fellow Muslims and treat them with honour.

How are the Muslims going to attain a sense of pride and self-discipline, if such stifling laws continue to be force-fed into our system, pushing us into a corner? Even trying to think out of the box or expressing yourself in a moderate manner will attract frowns from other holier-than-thou Muslims brainwashed by the system.

Muslims must be given due respect, and the right to choose, shun temptation and build character. Muslims should be encouraged to mingle and mix with other races and to learn their strengths and weaknesses. They should not be kept apart by religious and cultural differences, which BN has been encouraging all along.

BN’s efforts to keep the races apart is the meanest thing the government has ever done to our nation, and this will be its ultimate downfall.

If Pakatan were to form the next government, but Muslims’ rights continue to erode with ever more restrictive laws, it will be a short-lived victory, as the Muslims would not retain them in the next election. The non-Malays, too, would be traumatised and not stand for such a theocratic state.

It is the hope that a new government will give Muslims a breathing space to think and act on their own free will. Non-Malays complaining continuously of eroding human rights should understand the Malay plight by now.

There are many Malay intellectuals in the country that recognise the dilemma, but most of them prefer to stay in the closet, keeping mum rather than to try and rock the boat.

MCA has threatened to leave BN if hudud laws are implemented in the country. PAS is insistent that hudud will be implemented with or without its coalition partners.

Tunku Abdul Rahman’s words that “religion and politics should not mix” have been largely ignored by both sides of the political divide.

Today, the royalty is the protector of religion. BN infuses religion in the country’s governance. Umno and PAS ensure that Muslims do not toe the line. No one really cares whether the non- Malays are short-changed or not.

The political myth

Muslims in this country can never be trusted to live a pious life. More and more new laws must be enacted to restrict them from falling into sin. Young Muslims should not sit together, hold hands, or show intimacy and are encouraged to marry young to prevent the temptation of illicit sex.

Young Muslims should instead be encouraged to make an “engagement” first for a few years, and then marry. That will solve the increasing divorce rates among Muslim couples. Instead, the state endorses the view that 15-year-olds that have reached puberty are of marriageable age. Talking about absurdity.

The biasness towards the weaker sex is largely ignored, and Sisters In Islam’s (SIS) views are not taken seriously. Irshad Manji’s books are banned probably because she is a lesbian, while Biro Tata Negara (BTN) or National Civics Bureau still extols that it is all right to spin false and deceptive information against the opposition.

Non-Malays, however, seem to have got on pretty well with the absence of such stifling laws. But since none of them are going to the Islamic heaven, no one really gives them a damn.

On the other hand, these same laws are rather quiet on corruption, the Bohsia phenomenon, the Mat Rempits and rising drug addiction, because they do not breach morality laws even though these are more serious matters.

And the saddest part about it is, most of my Muslim friends do not appear to be more pious in their thoughts and deeds, and most of us cannot resist staring at sexy women in mini-skirts walking by. And these same people look back at the government, stunned at all the wanton corruption, graft and other vices plaguing the nation even though we are supposed to be an Islamic country.

The birds and the bees

The efforts to restrict Muslims from sinning have been largely unsuccessful since we still have repeated incidents of unwanted pregnancies, and foetuses found in dustbins and bushes, which some wise guys are trying to blame it on Valentine’s Day as the cause of liberal sex.

The failure of the authorities to implement sex education at an early stage and Muslim parents who are too coy to educate their children on the “birds and the bees” are the causes of these problems. What is so difficult to tell your children that sex before marriage will cause big swelling tummies and produce little monsters?

In our zest to implement Islamic laws in the country, we have forgotten our non-Muslim counterparts, who are distressed at what they perceive as creeping Islamic fundamentalism encroaching into their basic rights in their homeland.

Is it a wonder why the MCA president has stated that a Pakatan victory is a ticket for a prime minister from PAS?

A tour guide, trained pilot and naturalist, Iskandar Dzulkarnain has been writing a few years now and with his articles appearing in most of the E-media.


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