Monday, January 11, 2010

Principles, not sensitivities!

The best speech that I have seen so far related to the recent "Allah" ban in Malaysia was not from PKR, DAP or PAS. Surprisingly, it's from an UMNO member. And I'm not being sarcastic.

You can read Tengku Razaleigh's full speech here. The speech was given at the Institute of South East Asia Studies Regional Outlook Forum 2010 at Singapore on Jan 7 2010.

The following are the arguments that I am most impressed with, "...a government whose primary response to a public issue is sunk in the elastic goo of “sensitivities” rather than founded on principle..." and "...It is about doing what is right rather than protecting arbitrary feelings. If feelings diverge from what is right and just, then it’s time to show some leadership."

A leadership that is based on "sensitivities" of a particular group will always flip-flop on his decisions, contradicting constitution and law on the way of doing so. A leader whom is not guided by principles, will allow himself/herself to be led by the nose.

If our PM's leadership was founded on principles rather than to satisfy his need to stay in power or to satisfy the sensitivities of a group of extremists, this is what he would have said,

I understand that the recent court ruling on the usage of Kalimah "Allah" has caused concerns among various people, Muslims and Christians alike. First of all, I would like to assure everyone that everybody has the freedom and right to practice their own religion. No one should force someone's religion onto another, be it Islam or Christianity.

Any religion, and especially Islam, emphasizes peace and harmony. Muslims are compassionate. And Muslims must more so show this virtue during the time when some of us have a slight disagreement with our Christian brethren. Let us not forget that they are also our fellow countrymen and neighbours, whom we have lived together in harmony for so many years. Everyone deserves compassion and patience from a Muslim, what more if they are our fellow countrymen? Therefore, we must refrain from any violence act and engage in a dialogue to solve our differences, as Nabi Muhammad S.A.W. would have.

The usage of Kalimah "Allah" by non-Muslims though may be an issue, it is neither the most important issue facing Islam today nor is it the most important teaching from the Quran or Bible. There is no point in getting the Kalimah right, but indulging in corruption, ignorance and violence at the same time. It is an issue. I am not saying it isn't. But it is not the most important issue facing the Islam faith or the Muslims of Malaysia right now. I assure you, that we will seek a solution to this, and we shall seek it through inter-faith discussions and forums, not through violence.

The ruling is now under appeal. I urge to let the court process to take place and respect the judge's decision. There is a reason for the court and the law to exist. Although it may not be perfect, we must respect the process and to amend the law through the right process. And that is through the Parliament, not through the streets or violence or by inciting hatred. In this case, as the leader of the majority party in the Parliament, I shall take the lead in proposing an amendment to the relevant laws to rectify the problem. I shall do this, only after in consultation with various parties and after sufficient inter-faith dialogues have been made. Meanwhile, let us be patient and respect the judge's decision.

Therefore, I urge everyone to be calm and patient during this time. Show what real Islam is about. Show what being a Malaysian is about."

This, is what I would said if I am the PM. He should have been neutral. But instead, he chose to blatantly side with the Muslim extremists.

1 comment:

聪涵 a.k.a buggie said...

If we have such politician in Malaysia, we would have reached a much more developed stage than we are now..
You come out to contest for a parliamentary seat lar. u'll have my vote.. hehe