Senseless politicking a bad omen

by Lim Mun Fah , translated by Dominic Loh

The Kajang by-election war has now picked up in intensity. Even CNY video clips have taken on a political undertone, especially the Onederful Malaysia clip created by Teresa Kok which has spawned an uncompromising war of words across the country’s political platforms, culminating in rewards for a slap on Kok’s face.

The farce has spread like wild fire that even TV drama 88Kopitiam has been abruptly suspended as a spinoff from this matter. As if that is not enough, a local organization Pertubuhan Permuafakatan Majlis Ayahanda Malaysia (Permas) has banked on the chaotic situation to goad the government to expel Chinese and Indian Malaysians not conversant in the national language.

It is by no means novel for politicians to use festive video clips to manifest their political beliefs or stands because such comical ironies are most definitely commanding a good market, which is a cheap yet effective platform to promote their ideas.

While such boisterous ridicule and chiding indeed strike a chord readily among the viewers, they often spark controversies with the opponents and proponents taking their distinct sides to discredit the other. They have found themselves seemingly persuasive reasons to mercilessly demonize their opponents and justify their own improper acts.

Personally I don’t appreciate such festive video clips as I think festive clips should deliver complimentary messages minus the ironical political elements which defile the true meaning of festive celebration.

Undeniably, some feel humiliated or intimidated by Kok’s Onederful clip, and this is completely apprehensible. Nevertheless, the slap offer and chicken blood smear by some Muslim NGOs have gone way overboard and must be censured in strongest terms.

The police should not just initiate probe on Teresa Kok and others over the clip, but must also take determined actions against those responsible for the slap reward. The police’s biased approach in handling these two incidents invariably evokes a double standard impression among the public and is hardly convincing.

The whole thing has now developed to a stage that has made many feel uneasy and regretful. As a matter of fact, anyone unhappy with the messages carried in the Onederful video has absolutely the right to comment and criticize but in a restraint manner so as not to incite further hostility and tension in this country.

We must come to terms with the reality that we are living in a multiracial and multicultural country which upholds liberty and democracy. The single most important rule of thumb when it comes to cultural and ethnic differences is that we must strive to accept and tolerate. Can we accommodate and accept such differences and do we allow people to think and act differently from us? All these will put our maturity to test.

Unfortunately many of our political leaders appear to have deviated further and further away from sensible politicking. More than ever they are manipulating freedom in their own hands and getting less and less tolerant and accommodating.

For the sake of power and ballots, they are shameless in resorting to provocative discourse and acts in an attempt to blow up the mutual conflicts and differences indefinitely, sowing the seed of hatred and throwing the nation to the verge of confrontation.

A society with continuously widening gap of conflicts is a dangerous one and this will transport our society to a level whereby every evil trick will be conceived just to bring down our foes. What is happening now could as well be the start of a bad omen to the nation and her people. It’s now time to put a stop to all this nonsense and ponder how we can make this country a better place for all.

The views expressed in this article are the personal opinion of the columnist and this article first appeared in mysinchew.com

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