Malaysiakini NEWS

Hot potatoes, soft targets and sex

William de Cruz  |  Published:  |  Modified:

COMMENT | Malaysia's style of politics is boxing in Pakatan Harapan politicians to focus on the soft targets of sexual preference and same-sex marriage, instead of commanding decisive and immediate action
on the hot-potato issues of child marriage, controversial religious studies and child safety in our schools.

Conventional, whispered wisdom says it’s a way of political life because Harapan needs to burnish its religious credentials to pre-empt Umno or PAS stepping into any potential void as defenders of faith, doctrine and race, the subtext of which has always been the supremacy of one ethnic group and religion, over all others.

Many Malaysians continue to rightly believe the current Harapan administration is truly bent on supporting a multi-racial and multi-religious population founded on equality, that it is exactly what we
need to move forward, painfully slow as the pace may be.

Nevertheless, the ongoing sandiwara over LGBT acceptability and gay marriage is another wake-up call to remind us that everything changes while everything stays the same.

A history of pragmatism in our national politic may convince Harapan it now needs to deal with the perceived threat from Umno exactly as Umno countered PAS in the lead-up to GE13, by out-performing the opposition in the arena of race and religion.

But in so doing, Harapan faces the real danger of entrenching itself as no more than respondents to the destructive agendas of these two opposition parties to divide, disrupt and ultimately conquer...

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