Ethno-Religious Provocation By Politicians And The Media

Even though the government has about one more year before the deadline of holding the next General Election comes around, netizens like me could already feel the electoral heat online. Predictions on elections are announced, promises in return of victories are made, issues are reprised and political malarkey are sung in beautiful notes.

In a globalized era where the burst of transparent information permeates in the minds of a developing society, Malaysia is laden with internal and external challenges. These challenges are comprised of a constellation of wants, needs and frustrations. Citizens with common causes come together to fight for their rights and politicians (or powerful political key players) mobilize these citizens for their objectives of attaining power. Some want to gain power for themselves and some want it to change the country.

The new media has become the main tool to unite people under the same banner. It is easy to arrange political gatherings by instant updates via Facebook or Twitter. The telecommunication evolution facilitates speedier access to information with internet on mobiles. It is also easier to pit communities against each other with irrational and irresponsible posts that are racial, ideological or creed based provoking statements; the Chinese vs Malays vs Indians, Christians vs Hindus vs Muslims, Liberals vs Conservatives and so forth.

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Never-ending Islam-West Conflict

The tragic Toulouse shootings caused by a young Algerian muslim has aggravated the French public’s perception towards the muslim community and the sacred religion itself. Even though as muslims, we know that what Mohammad Merah has done was against the principles of Islam, the portrayal of the Western media does not conform with this idea. Islam is not a religion of violence but some of its embracers are. These people who give Islam a bad name, use it to justify their acts.

I remember of the troubles that I encountered at immigrations during my travels in Europe including France. There were a few times when I was randomly selected (luck or coincidence?) for a thorough inspection. Then there was once when I was forced to take off my hijab. Now that really got me on my nerves. Does being Muslim make me look like a terrorist? But then again, I sympathized the officers who were probably themselves living in a state of fear.

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Politics of Hate

I have deactivated Facebook in December 2011. After utilising the famous social network for 4 years, I decided that I should put an end to it. Why? To sum it up, I find that currently the downside of FB outweighs its benefits. When I shifted from the world of Friendster to FB, I succumbed to the numerous functions that it offered. It was more convenient and private than Friendster. Sharing pictures with cousins in JB and establishing networks with professionals were the main objectives. Over time, the uses of FB have evolutionized. Especially when more people were joining the social media.

Then there came in people who take Facebook way too seriously. The flourishing of politics of hate worsens the situation in the Facebook sphere. Every morning when I read the statuses which were either about the day people go through with or the highlighted news in the papers shared, they were filled with negative responses. Facebook has become like a trash can for people to vent their anger and frustrations.

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Fragmentation and Challenges

Malaysia has come a long way since it independence in 1957. From an agricultural based country, it has become one of the most developed country in Southeast Asia. Like any progressive nation, its development comes with a cost. Any man-made improvisations is imbued with inadvertant problems. There is no such thing as an absolute solution.

Malaysia has become a part of the globalization process since the 15th century. Not wanting to be lagged behind, Malaysia went through rapid industrialization and development aiming to achieve its Vision 2010 as championed by Dr. Mahathir from the 80s. A combination of its national policies, technological advancement and international influence has contoured the Malaysian society in a way that we have never imagined.

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Respected Women in Personal Relationships

In a preconditioned society, certain groups are subjugated by the perception of being the weaker kind. The categorization of these groups may be based on ethnicity, gender, age, income, intelligence, material possession, physical condition, inherited status and many more.

One of the most popular type of human being that is prone to be mistreated are women. In conjunction with the recently celebrated International Women’s Day, I would like to share some thoughts on this particular issue; the maltreatment of women by their male counterparts.

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Views on The Deportation of Hamza Kashgari

Amidst the furore among Malaysian activists caused by the deportation of Saudi jounalist Hamza Kashgari, the Western media has widely reported a negative picture of the government.

The issue was that the Saudi citizen had tweeted a contradicting statement on Prophet Muhammad SAW during Maulidurrasul last week. An excerpt of the tweets quoted from the Dailybeast were as following;

On your birthday, I will say that I loved the rebel in you, which always inspired me. But I didn’t like the aura of holiness, I will not bless you.

On your birthday, I see you in my face everywhere I turn. I will say that I loved some things in you, hated some things, and I did not understand many other things.

On your birthday, I will not bow to you. I won’t kiss your hands. I will shake hands with you as an equal, and smile at you like you smile at me, and talk to you only as a friend, nothing more.

Kashgari has deleted those tweets. However, the initial statement has already gotten him into trouble with the strict Islamic state. The contents of those tweets reflect contradictory beliefs towards the Prophet and it is seen as challenging the sanctity of Islam. Such ideas may probably encourage a misguiding belief for his tweet readers. Even in any religion, condemnation of its highly revered figures is never tolerable.

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