Malaysiakini News

Proposed Racial and Religious Hatred Bill ill-conceived

Kua Kia Soong  |  Published:  |  Modified:

COMMENT | Minister in the Prime Minister's Department (Religion) Mujahid Yusof Rawa has told Parliament that a Religious and Racial Hatred Bill would be tabled soon “...not just to deal with incidents when Islam is insulted but also when non-Muslim faiths are insulted... This is to ensure that our multi-religious and multiracial society is protected from being insulted and belittled."

There are three reasons why such a law is ill-conceived:

(i) It is framed as a “problem” rather than a solution;

(ii) It is another “fluffy” law that can be used against dissidents; and

(iii) It is not “rights” based.

Let's move from the “problem” frame to a “solution” frame. Milton Erickson, the acclaimed practitioner of medical hypnosis, taught us the power of “embedded commands” and how words shape our external experience. Thus, if we want a new society that is equal, just and tolerant, we should avoid naming a law as “Religious and Racial Hatred Act”...

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