PROMOTING HARMONY AMONG ALL

Posted on February 5, 2012

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When I get to the polling booth (Part Two)

When I get to the polling booth this coming general elections, the question among others that I will ask myself will be: Which of the two contesting political party coalitions will be more likely to truly promote harmony among all Malaysians and show themselves willing to move against those who have incited hatred and fear against the multi-ethnic, multi-religious fabric of Malaysian society?

It is dangerously unhealthy that in our multi-cultural context we are now being subjected to news about non-halal (non-kosher) and therefore offensive items, animate or inanimate, being provocatively placed in places of worship or practised and served in public functions. This issue is not just about any one animal, colour (of gift packets) or religious sentiments or customs of any one religious faith or culture. At stake here is the very basis of our national integration. And no amount of semantics or cleverly-couched slogans will heal the fracture we are now being subjected to.

To be, in a political sense, anti-Muslim, anti-Christian, or anti any other person’s religion is unbecoming of any one individual or group especially when the perpetrators claim to be representing or defending their respective religion and culture. Nor should we be anti-Eurasian, Aborigine, Kadazan, Iban, Malay, Indian, Chinese, or for that matter anti-Semite or Arab or Palestinian. The Bible teaches that all human beings have been made in the image of God and therefore endowed with dignity to whom respect is due.

Thankfully, God needs no defender nor protection. A genuine faith will usually show and demonstrate itself through changed lives. And changed life is better expressed in one’s love for one’s neighbour. Love by its very nature cannot be represented by agrression but by genuine respect and concern for others.

When human beings try to politically defend or protect their respective faiths, more often than not they misrepresent the truths and values their respective faiths espouse. Those who want to safeguard the position of their own religion or culture can better do so by safeguarding religious and cultural freedom of others. Respect for all human beings is respect for our common Creator. By disparaging what others hold dear and sacred for the express purpose of promoting the supremacy of one’s own culture or belief will only serve to place our faith and culture under question, even making it the scorn of others as is now the rampant case in our country.

Promoting harmony among all the people should be the urgent task of the next government of our country. Failure is not an option. Accordingly, when I get to the polling booth this coming general elections, my vote will not go to those who are likely to fail to truly promote harmony among all our people.

In this respect, the proper numerical for effective use in promoting real harmony is not “one” but “all”.

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Posted in: Elections