Today, on the second day of the long-awaited Barack Obama's visit to Malaysia, he was seen and photographed by local and international photographers visiting the National Mosque in the morning before going for his list of engagements of the day here.
Interestingly, many netizens, upon seeing the photograph have started to ask why is someone from the west who is allowed to visit mosques, suraus and etc, whereas usual non-Muslim Malaysians and other people especially Opposition politicians resulted in brickbats, and screaming from the Malay-race crusaders like Perkasa, Pekida and even from UMNO themselves, despite the fact that they are being invited by the mosque committee days ahead before then.
Is there a problem when people with different religious beliefs visit mosques or churches in other countries, especially in the more-matured-society countries? Absolutely not. All were welcome provided that those who visit are decently dressed and they do not make a ruckus in the places of worship. These are the two core and common rules that would definitely make sense whenever one visits the place of worship.
The gist of the story is that Malaysia is full of people who thinks they are better than the rest of the lot there, claiming themselves to be the race protectors. However, upon seeing a white man from the west, they cower, perhaps due to the mentality that the white man from the west is always right. Why are those chest-thumping race-champions not making a sound at all when a prominent white man walks into a place of worship? If this happens, it indeed shows, as the myth of the lazy native demonstrates, the weakness, selfishness and the negligence of the those who claim to be superior than the fellow Malaysians who do not follow their holier-than-thou claims.
This mentality was subtly shown prominently last month. If you look at the trend of the news coverage within the first 10 days right after the Malaysian Airlines flight MH370 went missing, our authorities seem to be in-adept in handling the crisis. Looking at how they take the questions, they have been conflicting statements one another.
And there's the DCA director who's inadequate in addressing theies international press questions, leaving to Hishamuddin Hussein to deal with it (you got to give a small compliment of how he addresses himself) whereas, whenever there's an airflight crisis, it is always the DCA first that will have to deal with it instead of the ministers and other relevant parties.
It's a norm and a reality that most international journalists and reporters would definitely pose hard and tough questions. However, many do not see the kind of standard seen in the local press, as their quality of writing give a meek and docile impression / perception that they are trained to non-critical of the government. Anything against it is a seen as a sign of capitulation to the enemy (Cold War mentality). Hence I've always been insistent that the National News Agency should display the names of the reporters who write their articles as a sign of showing real authorship and responsibility.
The old Malay adage of "menang tersorak kampung tergadai" seems to be forgotten in the minds of those lower-level rungs supporters of political parties of both divide. However it is noted that UMNO commits more mistakes than any other Malaysian political party because they are in the political driver's seat. It is critical to be reminded that while these people scream of all sorts of rhetorics for political support, it leaves the nation and the fabrics of foundation in tatters.