Articles, Opinions & Views: The sexual predators whom we call school administrators by Mariam Mokhtar

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In A Foxhole
“When you're left wounded on

Afganistan's plains and

the women come out to cut up what remains,

Just roll to your rifle

and blow out your brains,

And go to your God like a soldier”

“We are not retreating. We are advancing in another direction.”

“It is fatal to enter any war without the will to win it.”

“Old soldiers never die; they just fade away.

“The soldier, above all other people, prays for peace,

for he must suffer and be the deepest wounds and scars of war.”

“May God have mercy upon my enemies, because I won't .”
“The object of war is not to die for your country but to make the other bastard die for his.

“Nobody ever defended anything successfully, there is only attack and attack and attack some more.

“Fixed fortifications are a monument to the stupidity of man."
“It is foolish and wrong to mourn the men who died.
Rather we should thank God that such men lived.

The Soldier stood and faced God

Which must always come to pass

He hoped his shoes were shining

Just as bright as his brass

"Step forward you Soldier,

How shall I deal with you?

Have you always turned the other cheek?

To My Church have you been true?"

"No, Lord, I guess I ain't

Because those of us who carry guns

Can't always be a saint."

I've had to work on Sundays

And at times my talk was tough,

And sometimes I've been violent,

Because the world is awfully rough.

But, I never took a penny

That wasn't mine to keep.

Though I worked a lot of overtime

When the bills got just too steep,

The Soldier squared his shoulders and said

And I never passed a cry for help

Though at times I shook with fear,

And sometimes, God forgive me,

I've wept unmanly tears.

I know I don't deserve a place

Among the people here.

They never wanted me around

Except to calm their fears.

If you've a place for me here,

Lord, It needn't be so grand,

I never expected or had too much,

But if you don't, I'll understand."

There was silence all around the throne

Where the saints had often trod

As the Soldier waited quietly,

For the judgment of his God.

"Step forward now, you Soldier,

You've borne your burden well.

Walk peacefully on Heaven's streets,

You've done your time in Hell."

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The sexual predators whom we call school administrators by Mariam Mokhtar
Friday, April 23, 2021

Malaysiakini: COMMENT | The latest menstrual "period check" scandal is nothing more than control of women and state-sanctioned sexual harassment against them. It has nothing to do with religion or school discipline.

So, how much more of this sexual abuse will the Malay community tolerate? How much more public humiliation and mental torture can the Malay woman accept? Her shoulders may be broad, her patience may be as good as any saint's, and her temper kept in check, but perhaps, the time has come for her to be more proactive and more vocal about the abuses against her peers.

The "period checks" being conducted on schoolgirls to see if they are really menstruating has nothing to do with religion. In Islam, a menstruating woman is not allowed to perform the ritual prayer, nor to fast. The religion does not force checks on people to see what is stopping them from praying. It does not force you to pray if you do not want to. It does not encourage others to pry into your affairs.

All this begs the question, does the perpetrator really know Islam? Or are the perpetrators using religion to play out their sexual fantasies?

Groping to see if the girls are wearing sanitary pads or having their panties checked is nothing more than sexual harassment. Snide comments, such as "Are you desperate for a penis?", were allegedly reserved for the girl who did not use sanitary pads but preferred tampons. Have some Malays lost their self-respect?

Why do we allow sexual predators to run wild in our schools? The chances of them being found out are low and they are probably never punished, even if they are exposed. It has taken 20 years for this scandal to be revealed.

The menstrual period check does not seem to be an isolated incident because the reports came from former pupils from a wide range of schools, races and religions. Both boys and girls were subjected to humiliation. Some boys alleged that their genitals were groped to see if they were hiding mobile phones. The practice continues today.

It is unlikely that officers in the Education Department were oblivious to the workings of the schools. They must have been aware of this abhorrent practice. The ministers may not have been aware of these period checks, but the school heads must. Did they think it was right? If they did, one wonders what sort of other abuses go on under their watch.

Do the teachers who took part in the period checks not realise that they are wrong? If that were the case, how badly educated are our teachers when they cannot differentiate between right and wrong. How well do they understand their religion - Islam?

Are the period checks part of an unwritten SOP, or is something concrete written in the manuals held at the ministry? How widespread is the practice of period checks in government or Mara schools? What about the unregulated tahfiz and religious schools? What other sexual abuses do they get up to?

Institutional abuse

If we had sex education in schools and proper religious education, these things may not have happened. Girls would be better informed. Still, many of these girls realise that it was sexual harassment.

Jim Lim, a Penangite and a former director of social services in a London borough with many years of working with troubled youths, said, "It's unbelievable that any person or any institution could sanction a religious diktat which allows the gathering of evidence by frisking young people.

“This is an institutional abuse of children in public and a crime against young people. (In UK) if girls were to report this to social services, it would be investigated. If it goes on in British establishments, inspectors would come in, close it down if evidence came out. If there is strong evidence, it would become a criminal case. Such practices are not tolerated in Britain. It’s a crime.

The fear and shame of public groping and show of panties force some schoolgirls to break the taboo of prayer whilst menstruating.

One man who condoned period checks tweeted, "How else are you going to check if girls are menstruating or not?" Are period checks a common aspect of Malay family life, in this new era of Islamicisation?

Religious education in schools needs an overhaul. Will the Education and Religious Affairs ministers scrutinise what is being taught? What is the quality of our teachers?

Will the period checks in Malaysian schools be stopped? Will the ministries of Women, Family & Community Development, and Education act immediately to protect our girls? Will the perpetrators be brought to justice?

Why are the ministers silent about the period check? One wonders if anything will come from this latest scandal. When religion is involved, the authorities are impotent.

posted by Major D Swami (Retired) @ 11:40 AM  
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