There ya go, nary a couple of days go by before some fuckwit sees fit to call me 'kafir' in my own blog.
And you know what, I'm sick of being referred to in Islamic terms. Why can't someone be Muslim, and I simply be Buddhist or Christian or Hindu or Sikh etc? Why must I be... non-Muslim? Why must my identity be based on someone else's terms? And why must some of them have to use the word with so much disdain and self righteous indignance?
So, from now on, I resolve to do the following.
Since I'm being labelled kafir, I will label them as fakir. From the Oxford dictionary:
Fakir is more than just a coincidental play on the word kafir. It's actually very apt, describing those who are wont to use the word 'kafir' in the most derogatory manner possible, don't you think?
• noun a Muslim, a religious ascetic who lives solely on alms.
— ORIGIN Arabic,needy man.
And since I'm just a simple Chinaman, please forgive me in advance if I sometimes mispronounce it 'farker' or something.
Which brings me nicely into the topic of today's post:
Here's what some local Talibani fakirs want from the political parties in the next election:
PRESS RELEASE: 20 FEBRUARI 2008 / 13 SAFAR 1429H
MALAYSIA'S 12TH GENERAL ELECTION: ISLAMIC NGOs ELECTION DEMANDS
In view of the upcoming general election, Malaysia's Islamic NGOs exercise their democratic right by calling upon political parties, election candidates and the future state and federal government to address issues concerning the interests of Islam, Muslim society and the nation. The calls for a responsive government which is receptive to the aspiration of the people and the Muslim majority contained in a document called "Malaysia's 12th General Election: Islamic NGOs Election Demands". The document is a product of a consensus reached through a series of consultation among Malaysia's main Islamic NGOs including Muslim Youth Movement of Malaysia (ABIM), Jamaah Islah Malaysia (JIM), Malaysian Chinese Muslim Association (MACMA), Syari'e Lawyers Association of Malaysia (PGSM), Allied Coordinating Council of Islamic NGOs (ACCIN), Wadah Pencerdasan Umat (WADAH), Muafakat Masyarakat Malaysia (MUAFAKAT) and Muslim Lawyers Association (MLA), Persatuan Ulama' Malaysia (PUM), Teras Pengupayaan Umat (TERAS). (See the full list below).
The document comprises a host of demands which fall under six main items, namely the special constitutional position of Islam; Islamic education and da'wah (call to Islam); good governance; democracy and civil society; inter-ethnic and inter-religious relations; and Islamic faith and morals. Following are the summary of the demands:
1. Special Constitutional Position of Islam
• Defend the position of Islam as the Religion of the Federation under Article 3 of the Federal Constitution.
• Assert the significant role of Islam in the state and rejects the notion of Malaysia as a secular state.
• Defend and strengthen the position and jurisdiction of Syariah Courts under Article 121(1A) of the Federal Constitution.
• Legislate laws controlling the propagation of non-Muslim religions among the Muslims in Sabah, Sarawak, Perlis, Pulau Pinang and Federal Territories as provided by Article 11(4) of the Federal Constitution.
• Enhance the level of professionalism among the staff of Islamic agencies.
• Legislate Halal Food and Processing Act as a means to govern halal industry and enhance the enforcement of halal requirements.
• Take stern action against employers who prevent employees from practicing their Islamic religious duties at work.
• Prosecute those who cause religious disharmony, especially by making offensive remarks against Islam, under Section 298A of the Penal Code.
2. Islamic Education and Da'wah
• Increase the learning period of Islamic subjects in national primary and secondary schools.
• Set up Islamic higher learning and research institutions in specific fields such as education, technology and management.
• Guarantee academic and intellectual freedom by giving autonomous status to the universities.
• Re-instate and increase the per-capita aid to People's Religious Schools (Sekolah Agama Rakyat, SAR) and provide free textbooks to students of these schools.
• Re-introduce the teaching of Mathematics and Science in Malay at national schools.
• The Ministry of Education to allow excellent students from private religious schools to enrol in boarding schools under the supervision of the ministry and the Majlis Amanah Rakyat (MARA).
• Extend the provision of government scholarships, which are currently enjoyed by Malay students, to non-Malay Muslim students.
• Increase the number of recipients of the Public Service Department's scholarship award to Muslim students to further their studies abroad.
• The Ministry of Education to continue encouraging Islamic practices in schools.
• Provide special allocation to Islamic NGOs to carry out Islamic educational activities.
• The Ministry of Information to be sensitive toward the feelings of Muslim majority in devising broadcast policies; prioritize television programs that contribute to the development of a moral society; increase the number of Islamic education programs; and stop airing entertainment programs that promote hedonistic culture.
• Private television stations must adhere to the National Culture Policy and the National Education policy in selecting their programs.
3. Good Governance
• Step up the efforts to curb graft and abuse of powers among public officials.
• Appoint public officials among those who are free from graft, abuse of power and immoral conduct.
• Foster the internalization of Islamic values among civil servants.
• Public officials to make public declaration of their assets.
• Appoint senators among the leaders Islamic NGOs to oversee the implementation of Islamic policies and promote the welfare of Muslims.
4. Civil Society and Democracy
• Ensure that elections are clean, free and fair.
• Select election candidates among those who are of high integrity, good conduct and able.
• Ensure that the government exercises its powers in accordance with the rule of law and the constitution.
• Widen the democratic space in order to allow civil society institutions to contribute to social empowerment and nation building.
5. Inter-Ethnic and Inter-Religious Relations
• Enhance commitment to religious and racial harmony.
• Reject political parties and politicians who disregard special position of Islam in Malaysia and those who advocate the secular understanding of absolute religious freedom.
• Strictly enforce laws on the building of houses of worship irrespective of religions.
• Ensure that the sensitivities of local residents be taken into consideration before a house of worship is built in the area.
• Form a special committee comprising the representatives of Muslim organizations and local authorities to deliberate on applications to build non-Muslim houses of worship in Muslim-majority residential area.
6. Islamic Faith and Morals
• Reject the notion of religious pluralism which claims that all religions are the same.
• Reject the use of specific Islamic terms like "Allah", "Ka'abah","Baitullah" and "Solat" to refer to certain dissimilar concepts in non-Muslim religions.
• Increase the number of religious enforcement officers and their level of professionalism.
• Strictly enforce the existing laws on religious and moral crimes.
The full document can be accessed at www.MYISLAMNETWORK.NET