Monday, November 21, 2011

The lost art of filmmaking....

I remember being drawn to the movies at a very young age. I grew up watching P.Ramlee movies and I remember enjoying them very much. I was drawn to them. Growing up I had a lot of different ambitions, at 10 I wanted to follow in the footsteps of my father and become a police officer. Then at 12 I wanted to become a fashion designer and after that a writer. But through it all, I was always drawn to the silver screen. To the art of filmmaking, to acting. So when I left home to pursue my college education, I started dabbling in the entertainment industry. It all began with theatre. When I was 18, I started volunteering for the Actor's Studio at Dataran Merdeka. The first show I saw was Hip-Hopera. And I was completely drawn to the whole idea of acting and directing. Of pretending to be someone else on stage and being good at it. And then I started to pursue my love for the camera. I began working behind the scenes. I wanted to become a movie director. And today, though it may seem like I'm getting further and further away from that dream, I still hang on to it dearly. My love for motion pictures is not dead. Not yet. But something else is. Or at least, it almost is. The industry of motion pictures itself in this country. Just like my previous posting, slowly but surely (unless something drastic is done), our film industry is heading straight for the dog house. 

Some people get upset when I say that to this date, P.Ramlee remains the one and only excellent director in the country. Someone said that there are others who are good too. He said that by claiming P.Ramlee to be the only good director, am I saying that the others merely "pacak kamera" and don't know what they're doing. To this person and to all of you, I say yes. Because I have yet to see proof that anyone else can top P.Ramlee, or even come close to him. It's truly amazing to note that 50 years ago, with the lack of technology and funding, P.Ramlee managed to create works of art that continue to live on today and will continue to dazzle for a thousand years to come. And what are we doing today? With all the technology at our disposal, we keep coming up with one crap after another. So do not argue with me when I say P.Ramlee is the one and only. One thing P.Ramlee had that our directors today seem to lack is an eye for detail. And the fact that he held on to the importance of talent. Today we cast first and then find a stupid story to work around our cast. Some dumbass with money will say, here's 1 million bucks, I want to make a movie with Erra Fazira in it. And that is how the cancer began.

I was watching the 24th FFM awards show last Sunday. The show itself was a reflection of the dying industry. Is this what it has come to? It may seem like nothing. but this is the proverbial straw that will eventually break the camel's back. Didie Alias's horrifying rendition of Lady Gaga. Sad, but true. Majority of the public seemed to be okay with this. The reflection of what's wrong with our industry. And the cancer spreads.

The hosts, Ogy and Johan were the oddest thing you ever saw on stage. Their fit couldn't be more wrong. It was like watching a live telecast of an open heart surgery. It was beyond painful. For some reason, Ogy thought it was necessary for her to behave like a hyped-up teenager. 

She was literally jumping and bouncing and babbling away. And of course no airtime with Ogy is complete without her rambling her cv away. Yes we know you won an award before, yes we know Jins Shamsudin is your mentor, yes we know you used to be married to Eman Manan. At this rate, who doesn't? Do you have to remind us every chance you get? Whoever thought it was a good idea to pair Ogy and Johan together was probably high on crack. It made childbirth a better option to watch.
Astro seems to be taking over our major award shows in the country. Perhaps our terrestrial channels are running away due to low ratings. It may seem like Astro's saving the day, but what is their excuse for the crappy production? And what's with the Anugerah Astro First? That seems to be an acknowledgement for sheer stupidity. As it is, the creation of Astro First is pretty much giving pirates an easier way to kill the industry. We bark about ending piracy, tighten securities here and there, and here we are leaving the backdoor open for the pirates to enter freely. And we give an award for the most watched movie on Astro First? Wow, just when you think it can't get any shittier, Astro proves to us that it most definitely can.

Syamsul Yusof. Best director. Really? Amazing how low the standards have become. A young punk, riding on daddy's name, makes a couple of movies about fast cars, mat rempits and gangsters, and he's the best director? What can I say, our audience are really accepting. Put a bunch of good looking celebs in the movie, and voila, the public laps it up. Doesn't matter if those people can't act. Doesn't matter if the director doesn't pay attention to the details. Doesn't matter as long as there's enough make-up, enough fake eyelashes and enough mushy scenes. That sells. Quality apparently doesn't.

To point out the flaws in our movie industry would take me a very, very long time. There's just too much. And it saddens me. How our audience keep making excuses. Keep accepting. Unless and until you people start demanding for quality, the industry will continue to wither and one day die a horrible death. What P.Ramlee fought for would just fizzle away. I pray that this will not happen. I pray that the audience will have the sense to one day say, "Enough!" I pray for the day where people like Farid Kamil and Lisa Surihani can no longer depend on how cute they look together to sell a movie.

The next time you support a Razak Mohaideen movie, or a Yusof Haslam, think first. Have they improved? Or are they still using you with their shoddy work? Exploiting your acceptance with good looking celebs? If you let them use you, know that you are helping to kill the industry. Helping to kill the work of our great legend, P.Ramlee. Helping to murder quality. Raise the bar people! Unless and until we demand for quality, death for the industry is imminent.

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Music, and how we're killing it.

Slowly but surely, our music industry is dying. I'm hoping the latter can be remedied. That it will not be like life. Where death is inevitable. A rather morbid start to my posting this time around, but if that can help convey the severity of the situation, then morbid it shall be. Music is all around us. There are moments in our lives where music serves as a memory trigger. School days, family time, relationships, weddings, jobs and the list goes on. Sometimes driving through a certain part of town can be linked to a certain song we once heard while passing through it. So music plays an important part in our lives. And yet here we are today, killing it. What brought this posting on? Perhaps it's last week's AIM. Many on the inside are saddened by what the AIM has come to. Change of hands. Attempts to spike up ratings. The inevitable influence of technology. The world as we know it is changing, so why not music, some say. In some instances, change is good. But not if it is at the expense of sheer talent. 

How do I know the music industry in Malaysia is suffering a slow death? The moment Najwa Latif stepped onto the AIM stage to belt out her song Cinta Muka Buku. AIM is a prestigious affair, where talent should grace the stage. The likes of Anita Sarawak, Sheila Majid, Jamal Abdillah etc. However the new organizers of AIM saw it fit to invite a 16 year old who could not sing to save her life to perform at the awards show. Why? Because she got many hits on her YouTube video. Because our trigger happy public who happen to be very accepting and forgiving thought that this 16 year old deserved to be recognized as an artiste. In what right is she an artiste? If we still relied on A&R managers like we used to in the old days, Najwa Latif would not even be seeing the shadow of a microphone much less record a song. But today, everyone is an A&R manager, today everyone is a talent scout. Today record companies have been rendered useless because of its elimination as the middleman in bringing sheer talent to the public. Today the public decides. If the public says Najwa Latif should be recognized, then she shall be recognized. But for what? For being a cutesy little school girl who can somewhat play the guitar and when she opens her mouth, sound comes out. Some may say I'm being harsh towards a kid. But this is me, I call a spade what it is. I don't see the need to be nice just because she is young. I don't see the need to say nice things about her when I sure as hell can't find anything nice to say about her singing. Fact of the matter is that she can't sing. Maybe if she attends vocal school, maybe in a couple more years, I don't know, maybe then she may have something to offer. But even that is hard to tell because from what I can hear now, she truly can't sing. Malaysian audience aren't the only apologetic and accepting ones. Even America fell prey to Bieber Fever. Cute teenagers are probably the in thing these days. Forget about talent. Just focus on their cute smiles and that's it. A singer is born. 

It is sad how the industry is losing the shine it used to have. Music was so good back in the day. And some of these new singers do realize that, hence their attempt to duplicate it. Apparently Zee Avi managed to replicate the 70s in her recent performance. That doesn't make her own it, that's what I think. I truly and honestly do not understand what is the obsession with singers these days who sing with voices that sound so lazy and sleepy and nasaly. It's like they're not even trying. Zee Avi is one example. Yuna, Najwa Latif are other examples of this same style of singing. Why do we even give them the time of day? To say that "Hey, we're moving forward"? Or "Hey I'm in it with the youngsters"? 

There is also an unhealthy bug of rearranging that seems to be going around lately. To me that is just another word for mutilating. And that brings me to another moment that made me realize the cancer in the industry is spreading. The public's acceptance of desecration. I almost cried when I heard the crowd cheer when Azlan & The Typewriter sang their rendition of P.Ramlee's Jeritan Batinku. If it was up to me, Azlan, together with his crappy typewriter would have been arrested for doing what he did to that song. It's not just a song. It's a masterpiece. By a legendary artiste. And Azlan mangled it up beyond recognition and people lap it up. What is the world coming to? How can we not be mortified that Azlan wrecked a work of art? I may be making a bold statement here, but I believe it is true: Those who can say that they enjoy Azlan's version of Jeritan Batinku were never true fans of P.Ramlee. I'm not being judgmental, just realistic. Because no true fan of P.Ramlee can tolerate that bloodbath of a rendition. Strong words, but I am a true blue fan of P.Ramlee. So sue me! For if it was in my hands, I would sue the pants off of Azlan for inflicting the horror of his rendition of Jeritan Batinku upon the world. If he wanted to mess a song up, why couldn't he have just messed up his own song? Instead of taking what belongs to someone else and mangling it up?

Yes the industry is dying. Unless we do something about it, it will continue to suffer a slow and painful death. A death that will be felt by those who understand what music is. Music is not the influx of reality shows giving birth to ten reality stars each month. Music is not some idiot copy pasting other people's songs and trying to give an alleged breath of fresh air to it. Music is not what the sms votes are saying. Or what the Like button on YouTube says. Music comes from the heart. Not the need to chase for ratings. Music comes from the soul. Enough with the reality shows. Shouldn't it be obvious by now that reality shows aren't the best way for finding singing talents in Malaysia? None of the finalists of these reality shows, not even those who finally emerge as winners can even be remotely linked to talent. All they have is the ability to win the public over with their personalities, looks, fashion sense, love lives etc. And the public is kind enough to spend their money on sms votes to make sure these people emerge as winners. And for what? To further degrade the industry. 

I say return the power back to the record companies. Back to the talent scouts. Back to the A&R managers. Back to those who have the ability to evaluate what is talent and what is utter rubbish. It may be hard to fight the advancement of technology and the information superhighway, but it can be done. I have to believe that it can be done otherwise I'll have to accept that the industry is truly dying. And I refuse to believe that. Because I know many people who are the heart and soul of our music industry and I believe that they can still salvage it. Take the power out of the public's hands. No more sms voting. That's the way it was and that's the way it should be. It did not take sms votes to give us P.Ramlee, Saloma, Ahmad Jais, Jamal Abdillah etc. And the reality-based artistes of today can't even hold a candle to these stars. So I shall stand by my conviction, death to sms voting, or it's death to the music industry as we know it.

Monday, November 14, 2011

Anugerah Industri Muzik 2011

the stage
Last Saturday, I attended the 18th AIM, with my other half and my best friend. We were somewhat apprehensive about attending since it was moved from PWTC to Stadium Putra Bukit Jalil. PWTC had its old skool charm, and being an old soul, I prefer things to be classy. PWTC was more prestigious, and AIM being the only award left in the country that has yet to be "prostituted" (thanks Leila for the term!) by SMSes, deserved the prestige that is the Putra World Trade Centre. However, times are changing, and whether we like it or not, Astro opted for Bukit Jalil. So, we decided to give it a chance. The theme for this year's extravaganza was "Lights, Glitz, Glam." To me, that was nothing more than a lazy theme. Pretty much stating the obvious, it's an awards show, would it be anything else besides lights, glitz and glam?? But anyway, we glamorized ourselves and drove to the other side of KL.

my other half and my best friend
The "Blue Carpet" walk was longer than the one they used to have in PWTC, so we crossed our fingers and prayed our heels won't betray us, held our heads up high and braved through the nonsense that was the red carpet affair.

karpet biru AIM 18
After finding our seats in the VIP section, which was a bit messy since it was rather unorganized, we sat waiting for the show to begin. 

cahaya pena
My thoughts on the show are best seen through my tweets. They pretty much sum up my agony. I attended with an open mind, but then again, I was disappointed at every turn. The music industry looks like it's going to the dogs. Just because the organizers are chasing for ratings, for sponsors, they end up violating the industry and the essence that it was built on; talent and hardwork. An idiot who decided to post some vids of her singing on YouTube and the stupid public lapped it up, ended up being invited to perform on the AIM stage. She's a 16 year old, fame hungry school kid who can't sing to save her life! And there she was performing at the AIM! And Azlan and the Typewriter, who desecrated P.Ramlee's Jeritan Batinku was also asked to perform. How are we going to protect P.Ramlee's masterpieces when we endorse these acts of desecration???? Of course the industry is dying. The industry begins to die the day we award people like Yuna whose voice sounds like she's just soooo malas. Perhaps that is what music is today, you sound like you couldn't be bothered to try, sing with a nasally tone, and voila you're a top singer. I totally do not agree with the fact that she was given Anugerah Kembara. And that her song won Best Song. Hello!!!! Wake up people! Oh well, perhaps the old days are in fact gone. The days where talent actually mattered. The days without YouTube. Just writing about this now is beginning to give me high blood. The only consolation is that Najwa Mahiaddin actually can sing. Maybe she can save the day. Anyway, below are my tweets from the night itself. Enjoy the very blunt reviews!
view of the blue carpet

Berjaya meredah blue carpet without tripping. Now waiting for the show to start. Somebody here decided to wear drapes, sheesh!

Ramai artis bertudung ambik inspiration from the movie Cocoon! Yuna especially, damn weird menatang on her head tu!

Move aside yuna, zee avi, coz najwa mahiaddin is waaay better! Awesome opening! Tres magnifique!

najwa's opening act

Congrats najwa!! Yay category i judged, gave najwa highest marks, Alhamdulillah she won!

Yay yuna kalah. I dont like anuar zain, but better him than yuna.

Congratulations kak nora and abg johan!!

Watch out y'all, it's the age of najwa!! Mak suka nyah, especially since aku bg marks tinggi gila for her in this category!

Individually they are excellent singers, but put them all together in one song? An agonizing scream-fest!

3 suara melalak
Is it just me or is that peuwiiit thing getting old?

Dancers ni semua up sikit ja dari penari rtm. Mcm penyemak pentas ja.

Kalau pasang lagu-lagu stacy back 2 back sure mcm dgr one horrifyingly long song.

First time dengar Padi live! Not bad!

The acoustics dlm stadium putra ni teruk gila! Sapa pakai pacemaker sure semput. Aku pun dah rasa bergegar jantung!

Upin Ipin ni memang mana2 pun nanti ada appearance ka? Annoying gila. Dah la suara supersonic. Boleh pecah cermin!

Wahai soundman, itu level kasi drop sikit boleh? Nak pekak dah ni!

Dear neeloafer and shamsul, nak sembang pi backstage. Ur banter tak jadi ok.

From : if 4 every bad humor on stage i had a gun, csi kl will be busy tonite!

Bila organizers nak sedar yg mawi cant sing!!?? Semak perut tgk dia meneran. Plus, Akhil High scares me.

Between watching ads and kena tolerate mamat filler ni, baik tgk ads.

ReTweeted from @zalehahairene They left the ipads this time RT : Kita masih lagi generasi baca cue card! Huh.

Ac and zizan are doing a pretty ok job. Although and were way better. 

AC and zizan

Audience tak berapa nak tepuk sbb semua pakat dok twit. Termasuk la den ni. 

Kategori yang memurahkan anugerah ini: artis mobile terbaik 

Apa kau merepek ni syaiton?? Nak bagi award ka nak bagi ceramah?? 
(on the presenters for the Anugerah Kembara, they looked like they were milking their 30 seconds of spotlight time to the max.)

Dan spokesperson tudung cocoon naik stage. Lepaih ni ramai la pulak letak beehive dlm tudung.

Suara lemau macam she's half dead. Ive said it before, i'll say it again, i dont like yuna.

Ok im getting bored

Alhamdulillah azlan and his fucking crappy typewriter tak menang.

Can the aliens come down and claim back minah cocoon depa ni?!

straight from the movie cocoon
Orang paling tak layak perform kat ialah najwa latif. Lagu apa ni!!? Nursery rhyme? Nenek aku nyanyi lg sedap!

Msians are too accepting. Im dying here kena endure suara katak najwa latif ni. Why God why??

Am i at AIM or rancangan nyanyian kanak2 ribena??

Ok lah greyson chance just saved the day. Better this kid than bieber.

Beza vocals najwa latif and greyson mcm langit ngan bumi.

Yay dah last segment.

You hv to be kidding me rite!! Lagu terbaik, yuna dapat. The death of our music industry begins now.

Finally pemenang yg memang deserve to win! Kudos datuk sheila majid! Now this is a true singer! Eat dust yuna!

Maka tamatlah sudah. Time to tutup telinga coz azlan nak start nyanyi.

P.Ramlee must be turning in his grave! Wahai azlan, jahanamkan lagu sendiri boleh tak? Jgn rosakkan lagu legenda tanahair!

Saya sebagai peminat setia allahyarham p.ramlee rasa nak menangis sekarang. Generasi muda dah mula desecrate karya agung.

Die azlan die!

And it's a wrap! All in all, i had a good time with and

Friday, November 11, 2011

A side order of whore, please....

So I was watching a video on the OWC a couple nights ago. One question comes to mind, are they completely without brain cells? Now these are a bunch of professional women and here they are talking as though they've got mush for brains. I just don't get it. Why do they keep using prostitutes as a benchmark? Why on God's green earth do they keep saying that a wife should treat their husband's better than a high-class prostitute??? I'm amazed that they are even acknowledging prostitutes as having classes. Kalau dah prostitute tu, prostitute lah. Takda bezanya, high-class or low. But why must we even compare ourselves to prostitutes in order to ensure our husbands do not stray? It's like they're making excuses for the husbands. What if husband tu memang gatai? Layan la macam mana pun, he still strays. Then what? Wife jugak salah? Not prostituty enough? Time to take out the whips and fish-net stockings?? Why are they making excuses for the men? Why are they propagating the battered wife syndrome? Wives must be obedient to their husbands, but so is the other way around. Husbands must know how to treat their wives right too. And not just come home, kick off their shoes, prop their feet up and expect the wife to start pole-dancing! Akai ada ka?!?!?!

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Who says loyalty is dead?

The above was taken from a local Malay mag, Keluarga. A woman, whose husband is in prison wrote in to the health columnist wanting advice on whether a prison caning will result in her husband becoming impotent. The sheer lack of brain cells in some people is truly amazing. Your husband's in jail and your main concern is whether or not he can still reproduce?!?!?! Woman, get your priorities straight for pete's sake! Shouldn't you be finding out how to file a divorce instead?!?! Talk about loyalty! Sometimes these local mags do provide a good laugh. If not for the quirky questions in the advice columns, for the stupid how-to-win-your-husband-over guides. "6 Langkah Tundukkan Suami di Ranjang." "10 Cara Naikkan Nafsu Suami." "348 Cara Menjadi Lebih Seksi Untuk Suami." I have a better one "599 Cara Untuk Bakar Majalah Ini."

The thin line....

What is the oldest excuse in the book (in Malaysia)? No it's not “My dog ate my homework.” It's not “It wasn't me. It was my evil twin.” It isn't even “My grandma's going into labor.” 

The award for the oldest excuse in this country goes to, “Dekat Jepun, diaorang guna bahasa Jepun ja, lagi maju dari kita. Thailand pun guna bahasa diaorang jugak. Tak perlu pun guna bahasa Inggeris. Maju jugak.”

If I have to hear one more idiot barf out this excuse, I'm gonna rip their eyeballs out. If you want to throw this excuse in my face, might I say, “ramai orang under stress terjun bangunan, why don't you follow suit and get out of my sight!”

You want to know why they're successful in Japan? It's because they're hardworking. That is why they can power forward without having to enforce the use of English. Their industries are far more advanced than ours because they're hardworking. Compared to them, we are like a bunch of lazy, spoon-fed people. That is why our government is placing a strong emphasis on the English language.

Not to put the Japs down, but have you ever seen a Japanese tourist who can't speak more than 2 words of English, in the middle of KL, struggling with a map and trying to ask around for directions to wherever it is he/she wants to go? Not a pretty sight! Yes they may have the most advanced cars, or handphones or laptops or gadgets that could launch your dog into space, but can they get from KL Sentral to Tugu Negara without any trouble?? So basically, they're not that much better off for sticking to their own language.

I ask myself why some Malays love to make noise when the government wants us to master the English language. The only answer I can come up with is sheer laziness.

Bila malas nak belajar, maka lebih senang guna alasan “kita kena martabatkan bahasa Melayu.” I tell you, that argument sickens me. When will you nit-wits understand that mastering another language will in no way indicate that you are looking down on your own mother tongue?Since when is seeking more knowledge a bad thing?

I saw this on Facebook once. Someone was saying how weird it is that a lot of young urban Malays these days would rather converse in English rather than in Malay. Another person commented on this, supporting the statement, as usual resorting to the argument of how important it is to “martabatkan bahasa Melayu.” Note the comment (and its sheer idiocy).

This dude has the nerve to champion the Malay language! What kind of spelling is that? What kind of grammar is that? If anything, this person is a disgrace to the Malay language. And judging by the use of “bahasa melayu FAILED”, my guess is this person's English is also safely down the drain. I guess the comment above speaks for itself. The fact that this person's Malay is all over the place, why would he/she bother learning English. Clearly, laziness is apparent.

Ever since I was in school, conversing in English would be an indication of upper-class and “mengada-ngada”. I never understood that. Language is a communication tool. Why must we associate it with “martabat bangsa” and “keutuhun warisan” and loads of other bull-crap? It is a tool meant for communication between one human being and another. Between one person and the masses. English is used universally. Mastering it is an advantage. Do you want to limit yourself just because you are of some delusional theory that mastering it will make you forget your own mother tongue?

For me, in some situations, I find the Malay language rather limited to express what I wish to say. However there are also other instances where I find the Malay language to be better equipped to reflect what's on my mind. Therefore, being fluent in both languages has done nothing but serve me well.

So why are you people getting so jumpy when you're asked to master English? Like I said earlier, you're just lazy. Stop harping about the Japs or the Siamese or any other nationality for that matter. All it does is reflect on your own laziness. Enough with the “martabatkan bahasa Melayu” nonsense already. Grow some brain cells and enroll in some English courses. It's just appalling to think that you may pass on that horrifying theory to your children and your children's children.

I for one, am getting sick of your “thats mean” and “its mean”. Everytime I hear that it makes my insides turn.

Get over yourselves and accept the fact that language is just a means for communication. Learning English will make it easier for you to communicate with the rest of the world. Make it easier for you to get jobs with international companies. Make it possible for you to travel to places besides Indonesia! Maybe then we will be able to catch up with the Japs or the Koreans.  

Two for one....

Note the vision and mission of the two bodies above. Besides the terminology, between being a Body and a Council, is there really a need for both to function independently when it is pretty obvious they pretty much serve the same purpose? 

Both have their own websites, complete with their own mission and vision, objectives and other crap, but it all sounds vaguely alike. So why the need for both, separately? I sure as hell don't understand.  

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Am I in San Francisco??!!

This is my 100th post on this blog. Happy reading.....

I am writing this post well-aware that I'm setting myself up for hate comments. I'll probably be labelled as someone who is opposed to human rights. Some will call me a homophobe. Others may label me as a religious extremist. Truth be told, I don't care.

First and foremost, I understand loud and clear that Seksualiti Merdeka is NOT a festival to PROMOTE A GAY LIFESTYLE. I understand that you are not holding a gay drive, and trying to get people to sign up to become gay. I understand that you don't change your sexual preferences like changing a t-shirt. I understand perfectly well that this event is not meant to attract people to become gay. (While I'm at it, I also understand that Elton John's concerts are not some subversive plan to turn the concert-goers into homosexuals, but I digress.)

Anyway, now that we have that out of the way, allow me to say that the problem here is what Seksualiti Merdeka stands for and what it aims to achieve.

The following is a quote from the Seksualiti Merdeka website :

"Indeed there is a lot of hate going on, but fear not, you are not alone. There are so many of us. Let's not be afraid! We have done nothing wrong."

Allow me to remind you that in Islam (and many other religions as well), homosexuality IS wrong. Therefore when you are trying to promote the fact that it is not wrong, that's where the problem lies. If you choose to believe that what Islam, and other religions are saying about this matter is wrong, then that is your own personal choice. We are not an atheist society. We are strongly connected to our faiths and beliefs. Malaysia is an Islamic country and it can't be more clear in Islam that homosexuality is not acccepted. Therefore your crusade to make us endorse you is plain ignorance at work. How dare you call us ignorant when you are the ones who fail to see the pure and simple truth?

If I commit a sin, I do not go around saying that what I have done is right just so I can feel good for doing something wrong. What's wrong will remain wrong. Educate yourselves first before taking it upon yourselves to declare the rest of us as ignorant simply because we do not endorse your lifestyle.

Here'a another quote found on the website :

"I'm pleased that the police regards Seksualiti Merdeka as important as Bersih that it needs to be similarly banned. We ARE important. And if anything this ban proves why we need to keep fighting for our rights. The rights of innocent people are important." - Pang Khee Teik

Need I say more? Let me illustrate it this way. When a husband commits adultery, and the wife finds out, the wife hurts. But know what hurts even more? When the husband insists that what he did was not wrong, totally justifiable and goes around parading his sexual prowess. Does that make his meandering ways right?

One thing LGBT advocaters have somewhat overlooked, by calling the rest of us ignorant, is that you are denying us of our belief, and you are insisting that if we do not condone your preferences, then we are abusers who promote injustice and so on and so forth. Who put you on the rosy side of the border anyway? Why am I in the wrong for holding on to my beliefs? Why am I stupid and ignorant if I refuse to endorse your way of life? What about your ignorance in realizing that you are living in a society where same-sex relations are illegal? If you want openness, if you want acceptance, perhaps you should move to San Francisco. Call me ignorant all you want for saying that, but that is the bitter truth you refuse to accept. The choices you have made do not give you the right to be high and mighty over the rest of us. Nietzsche did say that morals were imposed by those lower in the society so as to hold back the intelligent few. Perhaps that is what you believe. You feel as minorities of the choices you made, then you must be right (It is perhaps interesting to note that Nietzsche died of syphillis.). Throughout history, minorities have been discriminated against and in the end they triumphed. The slaves from Africa, the blacks in America, women, coloured folks, Asians in Europe, and the list goes on and on. Therefore you have taken the superior attitude in placing yourselves like those people. Those people who were discriminated against, fought injustice and emerged triumphant. However you failed to note that no religion in the world ever condoned the discrimination of people based on their gender, on their race, on the color of their skin, or on their ranking in society. No religion ever endorsed what the Ku Klux Klan did. No religion said it was right for human beings to make slaves out of other human beings. However, when it comes to sexual preferences, it is clearly stated, not just in Islam, in other religions as well, that homosexuality is something that is not accepted.

When I say homosexuality is not accepted as a norm, that doesn't mean I promote the abuse of those who are gay. It is important to understand why such a choice was made, it is important to study the matter, it is important to respect one another and to give good advice, lead them to the right path, and if that fails, present them with the implications and let them make their own choices. Whatever they choose, that is between each individual and the Almighty. It is not up to us as the society to pass judgment, not up to us to persecute and call names, inflict torment or cause them harm.

I do not understand why people become gay. I do not condone it. However I respect their choices and I leave them be. That is the part I play in exercising human rights. What more do you want from me? What more do you want from Malaysia? We are an Islamic country. Homosexuality is clearly illegal. The way I see it, those promoting Seksualiti Merdeka are rather selfish indeed. They boom out that we need to stop injustice, they cry for freedom and the right to be queer without fear, they scream that we are discriminating them, but all I see is a bunch of people who are trying to widen the crack in an already fragile society. Seksualiti Merdeka has flown somewhat under the radar since 2008. Marina Mahathir even officiated it once, but it never became big. No one talked about it that much. But this year, 2011, suddenly Seksualiti Merdeka is splashed on the newspapers, on the news, and on social networks. Suddenly it made the Washington Post. And who's officiating it this year? None other than Ambiga. Why her? Why not Marina again? Why not some other celebrity? Why Ambiga? And why this year?

The way I see it, some people are taking advantage of the fragile situation in Malaysia and wants to makes the country look bad. They are using the homosexuals' fight for alleged justice to their own satisfaction.

Yes you are being selfish. Because you are trying to justify what's wrong just so it will make you feel good. I don't care if you do not subscribe to any religion, but understand that the majority of people in this country are Muslims. Therefore the way I see it, it is you folks who are being selfish. It is you folks who do not understand the concept of human rights. So you want to promote awareness, you say. Creating awareness on something that is illegal in this country is kinda like trying to promote the goodness of eating beef to Hindus.

An open dialogue is necessary to understand and combat these issues. Islam is a beautiful religion, it does not tell us to shoot first and ask questions later. Just because some people choose to call you names or refuse to give you a job because you're gay doesn't mean that the religion is at fault. Islam asks us to be tactful in whatever we do.

Speaking of being called names, and allegedly being shunned, how many of those who opt for an alternative lifestyle are abused, blackmailed, arrested or shunned from society in Malaysia? Maybe a few isolated cases, but for the most part, they are pretty much free to do whatever the hell they want. I see tomboy couples holding hands in malls. I don't see anyone throwing sticks at them or calling them names in public. If u go to our nightclubs, i'm pretty sure u can see gay couples practicing their lifestyles freely. What more do u want? The way I see it, this is just a ruse to break up our already fragile society. There are even some states in the United freaking States of A who still do not accept alternative lifestyles. And here we are trying to promote being queer with no fear? In Malaysia? Seriously?

Human rights does not mean acceptance of every damn thing. Not endorsing gays does not mean we are against human rights. In some countries, they'd probably stone you for being gay. We don't do that here in Malaysia. Isn't that human rights enough for ya?? Especially considering that you're fighting for acceptance in an Islamic state?

It is interesting to note that those who fight for alternative lifestyles often take it upon themselves to become the judge and jury of what is deemed right in a society. If we do not endorse you, then we are the ones at fault. Who died and made you guys the human rights police? Who put you on the pedestal of justice and freedom? Either we support you or we rot in the stench of shallowness and ignorance??

Ask yourselves this question, who's ignorant here???

I have friends who are homosexuals. I look at them as people. I respect them as friends. I enjoy their company. However I do not talk about their lifestyle choices. Because that has nothing to do with me. I do not condone homosexuality but that doesn't mean I can't be civil with them. Doesn't mean I can't be friends with them. Doesn't mean I can't listen to their music (Don't Let The Sun Go Down On Me comes to mind...).

I do not wish to be educated on "Seksualiti Merdeka". I do not condemn you in public, I let you and your choices be. The rest is between you and the Almighty.

Stop being selfish. If you want to be gay, that's your choice. Just don't impose it on the society to embrace and endorse your choices. How would you feel if I came up with a program called “Being Straight is Awesome” and shove it in your faces? Because that is exactly what you're doing, you're shoving it in our faces. And to me, that's unfair.