Religion 101: Nasty Cow Head & Missing Racial Harmony

Cow Head Religion Protest Shah Alam

(When I first saw the image of a dead cow head as part of a religious protest on the net, my initial thoughts was ‘Oh God, don’t tell me that this happened in Malaysia – what these jokers are trying to prove?”. Image source: www.malaysiakini.com)

Peaceful protest is good and healthy but these guys got their methods of protest all wrong – there is no need to mess up the area with poor cow’s head and blood!

But interestingly, seeing a group of people marching in protest with a decapitated cow’s head did not create the “racial” tension that “someone” perhaps had wanted to provoke. Sure enough, politicians from both sides had joined in the condemnation of the act with a cow’s head which and such protests if wrongly interpreted and not controlled can balloon to a bigger mess (given the right rub by the hidden hands, of course).

And with the BN politicians lead by the PM himself, not hiding their “intentions” to wrestle back the state of Selangor, one can see where this “cow head” protest is coming at.

By the same token, considering that we have recently ‘celebrated’ 52 years of Independence, it is rather frightening to read statements that the temple should not be relocated because the Hindus are not the “majority” in the area.

Considering that the non-Malays are already the minorities in many parts of the country, such statements have serious implications and questions such as:-

1. Should the government hunt high and low for areas where non-Malays are the majority and then gazette them so that temples and other items can be relocated without any effect on the majority’s feelings?

2. If there are no areas where non-Malays can claim to have a majority, then what happens to their freedom to practice their own religion and culture? Should their rights be wiped off and be forced to adhere to the needs of the majority?

3. Does this means the country is going to be spilt into controlled areas where minority from one group cannot overlap the majority from another group? Are we going to slice up Malaysia like a cake and divide the country even more?

With such rationale and narrow-minded thinking, it will be impossible to unite the country and its people. But considering what had happened, the question that remains is what will be the next step in the recent ‘cow head’ protest?

1. Enforcement of law and get those will involved (and those hidden hands) arrested and charged with the relevant law for the extreme protest?

I don’t think so – the Home Ministry is already quick to say that the protestors are not to be blamed (he blames the opposition and blogs) and already there are claims that the protest has been hijacked by certain groups claiming to represent the residents

2. Revamp the idea of relocation the existing temple to Section 23 and relook into the whole relocation issue?

Plausible but that would mean the ‘old’ problem at Section 19 will remain unresolved. Or

3. Continue with the relocation but come up with more guidelines and rules to ensure that the sensitivity of the residents in Section 23 is taken care.

The PR led state government has stated their case on this. Religion has always been one of the sensitive areas in Malaysia and thus, it needs to be handled with extra care.

I for one strongly support the consolidation of Hindu temples in the state and relocate them to a more feasible area. There are way too many temples and given the current sorry state of temples, there is a serious problem that the PR Government needs to look at and resolve without any further delays.

Having too many temples within the same area is also a headache for us Hindus anyway whilst temple committee members continue to stay ignorant of the law and surrounding developments.

At this point, one needs to read what YB Khalid Samad, the MP for Shah Alam and a PAS member has to say about the issue here and his follow up response to the readers’ comments to the earlier post here.

The so-called cow head protesters who have broken the rules need to be booked under the law but at the same time, let the merits of the cow head protests be heard and a win-win decision is made to satisfy all parties.

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