Harapan’s dangerous bait and switch - Commander S THAYAPARAN (Retired) Royal Malaysian Navy
Tuesday, January 22, 2019
Malaysiakini : “Their complicity and silence now – is frankly shameful.”- N Surendran
COMMENT | Make no mistake, the new legislation
to protect the sanctity of the monarchy – espoused by the Minister in
the Prime Minister’s Department Liew Vui Keong – is a craven attempt to
please the monarchy in the way that Pakatan Harapan partisans often
accuse certain Malay leaders of doing.
The public has never
threatened the sanctity of the royal institution – whatever that means.
Rather, Malay political operatives over the years have slowly stripped
the monarchy of its influence and powers, which they deemed detrimental
to their self-interests. This had the unintended consequence of
empowering democratic institutions, which was a good thing for the
Liew’s rather asinine justification for the new
legislation is typical of the horse manure coming out from Harapan
political operatives these days. He claims that the new legislation is
needed to ensure that the monarchy is protected from unfounded slander –
as opposed to slander grounded in fact – and attacks by irresponsible
Who are these irresponsible people? Netizens who are using
the freedom of speech trumpeted by Harapan as a departure from BN?
Activists, like Fadiah Nadwa Fikri who is using her freedom of speech to
ask legitimate questions about the royalty?
The only reason why
Harapan is even considering these laws is that they want to please the
monarchy, and have no trouble shoving it to the average rakyat – Malays
and non-Malays – who elevated them to power.
They do this because
they want to establish their race and religion bona fides; a non-Malay
minister shovelling this horse manure demonstrates the servile nature of
non-Malays in Harapan. All of which is done to service Malay
power structures and strengthen Malay institutions that are important
for the Umno/Malay base, which Harapan desperately thinks it needs.
Liew actually has the temerity to claim that the punishments for certain offences against the monarchy are too lenient. Really?
I want Harapan partisans to think about this carefully. Liew is saying
that the restricted class of people where freedom of speech does not
apply, has too lenient punishments and what Harapan wants to do, is make
the punishments more severe.
Controlling the racial narrative
does the minister want? Whipping, chopping of hands, or maybe to show
how serious Harapan is, the death penalty? Moreover, what does the grand
Harapan poohbah say when discussing these new laws that supposedly
protect the sanctity of the monarchy?
Liew babbles on about
looking into definitions. Listen, how is defining what constitutes an
insult to the royalty help the police or the royal institution? People
will just subvert or skirt those definitions and continue – if they are
brave – exercising their democratic rights, which this government
claimed it was interested in defending.
This is about protecting a
certain idea, which is used to control the racial narrative in this
country. Race and religion are the other two ideas. Everyone knows
this. By enacting legislation to further protect one idea and
cavalierly talking about increasing the severity of the punishment, what
Harapan is actually doing is further codifying ideas that are sacred
cows to the racists and bigots of this country.
The most interesting aspect of Latheefa Koya’s rejoinder to
the police was this line – “The authorities must be able to prioritise
their resources to tackle genuine criminal matters, and not get involved
in petty politically-motivated issues that should not be their
Indeed, any issues pertaining to the royalty in
this country are politically motivated. When someone like Fadiah raises
issues about the royalty, she is investigated under the Sedition Act
1948. But when someone like the prime minister reminds us that the
royalty is not above the law, this is somehow not deemed seditious.
were correct, but the person who suffers is the one who is supposed to
have constitutionally protected rights but thrown to the wolves, because
the political narratives in this country depend on the average rakyat
not slaying sacred cows, and Malay political operatives making deals
with institutions deemed sacred. It is pointless that the youth groups in the DAP are speaking out against this law and these injustices.
are all the big guns of Harapan? Anwar Ibrahim, our prime
minister-in-waiting, does not want to spook the Malays. I guess leaders
such as Lim Kit Siang, Hannah Yeoh, Tony Pua, Teresa Kok, Lim Guan Eng,
and M Kulasegaran do not have a problem with this.
I get it. They
do not want to be the non-Malay leaders who speak about the injustice of
this new law, or the fact that people are arrested for making comments
on social media, because this would stir the honest nests of the Malay
Strange, isn’t it? People like to call the MCA eunuchs, but
now when it comes time to display fortitude, all these people who were
shouting on the streets, online and on every platform they were on about
how cruel and “low class” the Najib Abdul Razak regime was, seem to
have lost their voices.
Some partisans who opposed these
laws before May have the audacity to email me now saying that I should
not speak up on this issue. The state security apparatus knows how to do
its job? Really? Now people have faith in the security apparatus? Now,
suddenly the state security apparatus knows how to do its job?
the state security apparatus should do is to crack down on people who
wish to do harm with violence to the democratic institutions of this
country. But what it always does – and now with the blessing of
Harapan – is to crack down on the average rakyat who use their freedom
of speech to question what is wrong with the democratic and royal
institutions of this country.
So not only is Harapan backtracking on its promise to repeal certain oppressive laws, it now seems that it wants to add to them.