Recently, I’ve become fairly consumed by feelings of frustration, mostly due to people on the internet.
The truth is, our Malaysia is inhabited by more people that don’t understand than those that do. Between pretentious Facebook/Twitter people, and articles on people like Harussani, whose latest speech includes: “calling malays to defend their land”, you would think that public opinion would be sound enough to speak against bigotry, but just taking a look at the comment section shows just how much the majority of Malaysians are not yet ready for democracy.
There’s so much immaturity in not even actions, but our speech, and of course before that speech, our thoughts. Although in recent times, we’ve lauded instances of how ‘we’ the people are taking over (and rightfully so), and how we have fought (and are fighting) for our freedoms, the scary thing is, what if the majority doesn’t get it right?
There seems to be only a small, silent minority of people who actually understand that our freedoms comes at a cost, and the rest? Well they jump on easy bandwagon rides and take on the view of whichever opinion leader suits their fancy. I know even as I am saying this that this seems like such a harsh criticism on something that is so positive, when we consider the latter- apathy and ignorance; but what I had a problem with was how we’ve made a habit out of booing the media, booing the sexists and racists, and religious groups, putting up articles of instances of unjust; Then we proceed to comment on it, “like” it, re-share it, and before you know it, a new day rolls over, and we repeat the whole process.
I asked myself, in the days since we cultivated our social-political fire, has anything actually changed?
We are so often ready to fight for freedoms online, but most of us are not ready to pay the price- the time, effort, hard work it takes to push for a bill or to leave our families for a greater cause-not that I’m saying we should leave our families, no no no! Don’t get me wrong, all I’m saying is that we are comfortable, we are complacent, and we are so often unwilling to actually dip our toes into the muddy waters- I know, myself included. So are we, truly ready?
I remember reading in the papers how a minister was commenting quite sarcastically on how we had to stop all this “…walking from one point to another to get our point across…” (Don’t remember the actual words). Apart from being angered by the gall he had to demean the protests and what civil society has done, a part of me related to the skepticism. So we walk, and post things, and discuss, and talk and get angry, but I worry for us… Are we all talk and no action?
Even myself, now, talking about this in this blog, what am I doing to affect policy change, reforms, and the whole ‘change the world’ call? Is the mere posting a post enough?
I know, that all this is good; The political fervor and the posts and spreading of awareness, its the best start. But its time to move past the starting line, and worse, not to get comfortable “At the start…”
Maybe we need a great big kick to get from posting, to action. If we truly want change, “we”- all of us, need to stop taking ‘political awareness’ as another identity, but let it be the ‘action’ of our being.
When the problems of the world become too large to handle, and when there’s a lot that makes me angry, I remember this conversation I was having with a friend about racists and racism or something like that I can’t remember, but he did say something I won’t forget,
” I believe there are many people that aren’t like that, its just that the racists speak louder…”
And then in dawned on me, how much we have let all the loud, incorrigible, downright retarded opinions to prevail, and how much more louder the good, sound, life-altering ones has to speak.
So what now?
Does it mean no more noise until we can legitimately make a change?
Not really, we just need to “do” more.