From the Selangor Times 11 January 2013. Ask Lord Bobo is a weekly column by LoyarBurok where all your profound, abstruse, erudite, hermetic, recondite, sagacious, and other thesaurus-described queries are answered!
Dear Lord Bobo, it has been reported that the police will help to facilitate Pakatan Rakyat’s “Himpunan Kebangkitan Rakyat” mega-rally on Jan 12. Do you think that there really will not be a clampdown this time?
There have been several reports on this. From what Lord Bobo can tell, the statements that the police would be cooperative actually came from PKR secretary-general Datuk Saifuddin Nasution Ismail.
He said that, following his meeting with the Inspector-General of Police (IGP) Tan Sri Ismail Omar, the IGP said that the rally will be “historic”, as the lessons of the past have been learnt – and based on Saifuddin’s account, the police were very helpful and were clear that things would go smoothly this time.
Our Home Minister, Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein, was quoted as saying that “the opposition pact must ensure that the assembly they propose to hold on Saturday did not develop into a riot”.
The last time this omniscient monkey checked, the police had a duty to maintain peace and order – one would think the Home Minister would be aware of this.
The “mega-rally” is supposed to involve civil society movements pushing for various demands, such as the anti-Lynas movement, fair royalty payments to oil-producing states, free education, and free and fair elections.
Lord Bobo hopes that all those who attend are indeed committed to these causes, and do not come with an intent to cause havoc.
As for a “clampdown”, well, there wasn’t a clampdown for the last Bersih – people were generally allowed to move freely into the city and up to the barricades of Dataran Merdeka.
Hopefully what followed after will not be repeated this time. It was described as a “riot” by the Home Minister, the police, and by The Star.
But as we said at the time, we think that “riot” wasn’t quite the right word to describe several people removing some barricades and moving into Dataran Merdeka, followed by ludicrously large amount of tear gas being fired into and behind the crowd, and hours of hunting down and beating up people who were dispersing, trying to get home, or sitting down having dinner, and arresting journalists and smashing their cameras.
Hang on, come to think of it, that was a “riot” wasn’t it – by the police, that is.
To all who are attending the rally, have fun, be safe, and smile and wave at the police like you did the last time.
To our dear police officers, stay calm, and let’s hope you aren’t asked to do anything silly this time.
Lord Bobo, any resolutions or wishes for 2013?
His Supreme Eminenceness never indulges in this human custom of making New Year’s resolutions, as we obviously do not structure our time around your calendar. But if there was one wish that could be granted sooner rather than later, we would wish that Malaysia would just get the General Elections over and done with.
It’s not that the outcome of the elections would affect Lord Bobo in any way – we are above politics, let alone Malaysian politics. But the longer the wait for the elections seems to drag, the more Malaysians seem to be regressing into Neanderthals.
Any semblance of mature discourse has long ago turned into petty name-calling, accusation-flinging, call-out-the-speck-in-your-eye-even-with-this-log-in-my-own, blind, deaf, and beyond dumb shouting matches. If it drags on for much longer, we would not be surprised if any political “discussions” descended into caveman-like grunts.
Dear Lord Bobo, what do you think of DAP’s “Ubah Rocket Style” video, which has sparked police reports? Is it offensive, and should it be a crime? (Psy, via email)
Firstly, readers who have not watched the video really should go and watch it right now – we guarantee that you will either have a laugh with them (because it’s so hilarious) or at them (because it’s so cringe-worthily bad).
Either way, you’ll be entertained, and there’s no way to describe it to those who haven’t seen it – some things are beyond even a hyper-intelligent monkey from cyberspace.
So anyway, the video resulted in several police reports being lodged, as it apparently insulted or tarnished the image of Malaysian leaders. The reports were made by a political party and several NGOs which are not worthy of being named in this column.
It is irrelevant what His Supreme Eminenceness thinks of “Ubah Rocket Style” – freedom of expression means that the video’s producers should not be harassed for making and distributing the video.
What seems to be lost on those who are complaining about the video is that it is supposed to be a parody. A joke. Tongue-in-cheek. It is sad that all this partisan politicking (gleefully fuelled by the media, both mainstream and alternative) has seemingly led to the loss of something sacred – the Malaysian sense of humour. It seems Malaysians can no longer take a politically-related joke anymore.
A quick check with our intergalactic minions has revealed that Malaysia is the first and only country in which a police report has been lodged about a Gangnam Style parody video (at last count, there are 96,323 such videos in existence, with 17,935 in Uranus alone).
To answer your question then – “Ubah Rocket Style” is not offensive and it certainly should not be a crime.
What is offensive and should be a crime is the lodging of frivolous police reports.
Several of these NGOs seem to exist solely for the purpose of making police reports for the purpose of publicity. Lord Bobo is certain they must have permanent desks in some police stations.
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