Malaysiakini Yoursay

Yoursay: ‘New Malaysia’ lurching back towards the old

Yoursay  |  Published:  |  Modified:

YOURSAY | ‘Unless laws pertaining to LGBT are amended, this is how things stand.’

Artist decries removal of LGBT activist photos from Penang exhibition

Vijay47: The removal of the photographs of LGBT activists Nisha Ayub and Pang Khee Teik from a George Town Festival exhibit is utter rubbish - the kind of rubbish PAS would be proud about. It is unbelievable that it should happen when Pakatan Harapan has become the government.

The removal of the activists' photos is not in any way different or less reprehensible than how Zunar's cartoons were treated by the previous regime.

The first thing to be done is that the little Napoleon responsible for this display of extremism should be dismissed; second, the photos are restored in the exhibition; and thirdly, the little Napoleon is transferred to some other state where he can feel more at home.

Newday: It is a great shame that we continue to pander to the extreme-right religious minority when it comes to another minority. There is no maturity or real logic to do this. What is there to fear?

We view the portraits and start questioning our own sexuality? That is what the religious right would have us believe. If that is the case, then it is them that have issues with their own sexuality.

Between this issue, the ongoing issue of how women dress, men in the religious right sure have some sexuality and sexual issues to deal with.

I almost feel sorry for their inability to do anything about their sexual urges and their fear of turning into LGBT if they come in contact with a picture. Talk about severe insecurity.

Roger 5201: Was the 14th general election not about inclusiveness and democracy? Why are we now discriminating against the LGBT minority who have committed no wrong?

Stop the bigotry and hypocrisy.

Anonymous_1527685386: Are you a better person than this group of people who happened to be born with different inclinations? Who are you to judge them? Does their existence harm you in any way? Is your faith affected by them?

To those who ordered the removal of the pictures, please answer, and reflect on your decision to act in this disrespectful manner to this group of human beings made by the same creator as you are. Are you better than them?

Clever Voter: This is disappointing, to say the least. In the final analysis, even this government lacks the courage to consider minority interests. That's politics for you.

Anonymous_1419577444: Apart from a new federal government, I don't think there is a consensus among Malaysians about what a ‘new Malaysia’ is or should be.

I would have thought that whatever a ‘new Malaysia’ should look like, Malaysians should not forget the core Asian values that were imbibed in us by our forefathers.

Many of these Asian values teach people that living in a community is about ‘we’ and ‘us’; not ‘I’ or ‘me’. And most importantly, Malaysians should not ape Western culture and values blindly believing that everything that comes from the West is the best and everything Malaysian is ‘ulu’ (backward).

Malaysians must have the courage to shake off the colonised mindset and carve our own niche, based on our cultures and values.

If we are not proud of our own heritage, others will look down on us. I don't know about you but I won't want to be colonised in person or in mind.

Jasmine: Any decent human being will and should give due respect to another, so long as the person is not an evil or dangerous person, as so many so-called leaders of society have turned out to be.

‘New Malaysia?’ Nonsense, it’s a fool’s paradise. Old wine in new bottles peddled by a different set of hypocritical vendors. The only real difference is that the people at large are wiser and have woken up to the knowledge of their inherent power as voters.

Change for the Better: I am ashamed of this intolerant ‘new Malaysia’. LBGT are human beings just like the idiots who are suggesting that denying their existence, force-feeding them so-called corrective teaching will get them on the ‘right path’.

What if the shoe was on the other foot? Maybe the right path is for these bigots who disparage the LGBT community to be sent for re-education.

Mano: It turns out the little Napoleon is the big Mujahid Yusof Rawa, the de facto religious affairs minister, who is now showing his true colours.

Ian2003: If the new government does not stop this kind of nonsense, then a newer government is called for.

Mujahid: Removal of LGBT photos in line with gov't stand

Proarte: I think Mujahid is being a moral coward and bigot masquerading as a compassionate rational human being. Sadly, he is buckling under the pressure by political opportunists and religious bigots.

If Mujahid recognises the rights of LGBT not to be discriminated against on the basis of gender or sexuality, then isn't he exactly doing just that?

Being a heterosexual man or woman is a statement about identity. If we have a right to be ourselves, where holding hands with our wives or girlfriends in public is an accepted norm of identity expression, then the corollary is for LGBT to be able to express their identity is a similar way to heterosexuals.

Let us, for the sake of argument, say a photo in an exhibition shows a man with a placard saying “I am a heterosexual” - would Mujahid then be chastising the exhibitor for “promoting heterosexuality”?

The obvious answer is no, so why get all hypocritical, presumptuous and discriminatory when the photo shows Pang or Nisha holding a rainbow flag?

Are citizens not allowed to hold rainbow flags? Why assume it is about 'promoting' LGBT? Pang and Nisha could be highlighting their solidarity with the plight of the LGBTs, who are a discriminated and marginalised group.

Has Mujahid turned compassion and support into a crime? Should these the kind of religious views have any relevance or currency in a modern democracy? Is any painting depicting a rainbow going to be a crime in Malaysia now, just because Mujahid may view it as “promoting LGBT”?

It is a sad reality that some vocal representatives of Islam like Mujahid invariably make it seem like it is irrational, hypocritical, discriminatory, and lacking in decency and humanity.

Fair Malaysian: This government has been quite liberal, like closing one eye to who or what is LGBT. This is a lot different from how the previous government handled this matter.

The minister is walking a thin line. The statute books still have an official stand, but it is fair that the minister has assured that there should be no discrimination on account of someone being an LGBT but the law does not allow for propagation.

Unless the law is amended, this is where it stands. On no account should anyone be discriminated for being gay, but there must be some patience on the part of the LGBT community.

There may come a day when this situation changes, but until then we must accept that they are part and parcel of a vibrant society.

Snowcrash: This is a justification that is beyond stupid. If you claim that by merely putting up a picture of them, by merely acknowledging that they exist, that this is somehow “promotion”? What utter nonsense.

This is bad as those twits who were claiming that Hannah Yeoh merely writing as a Christian was ‘proselytising’.

This is an unacceptable return to the ‘siege’ mentality fostered by BN, and the minister should be ashamed that he continues to enable such thinking.

The above is a selection of comments posted by Malaysiakini subscribers. Only paying subscribers can post comments. Over the past one year, Malaysiakinians have posted over 100,000 comments. Join the Malaysiakini community and help set the news agenda. Subscribe now.

These comments are compiled to reflect the views of Malaysiakini subscribers on matters of public interest. Malaysiakini does not intend to represent these views as fact.

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