Sunday, July 10, 2011

Yeah, they Were All Yellow - A Background Story

There is a certain country where peaceful rallies require a permit, which will usually be denied in order to maintain peace, or so they say. 

Over the past few weeks, the whole country was abuzz with news of a planned peaceful rally, by a group of NGOs who are fighting for clean and fair elections, with 8 reasonable requests. Any sensible Malaysian could see that there was no harm in this. After all, clean and fair elections would benefit everyone in the long run, among them laying to rest the notion that dead people and phantom voters are at large and voting in favour of a certain party, and overall equality for all those who are taking part in the elections.

A slightly less than sensible Malaysian though would say that the rally would disrupt peace and harmony among the many races that call themselves Malaysian (sniggers), and selfish business people would complain of loss of income due to the people not being brave enough to venture out of their houses to shop during the rally in case things got messy. Based on past experience of another illegal rally back in 2009 against the ISA, the messiness only began when the police decided that releasing tear gas and water cannons at people was a fun game.

Totally unreasonable Malaysians, on the other hand, would call the rally an illegal one, pointedly refuse to give the permit although they have been informed much earlier, accuse the organisers of being in possession of illegal weapons openly amongst their paraphernalia, organise counter rallies to oppose this rally (yes, go ahead and laugh), hold roadblocks just to annoy the people, and basically get all emotional and talk of revoking the citizenship of person behind the rally, and give backing to a certain uncontrollable martial arts group whose chief said that he could not control his members if they got out of hand, and ban the colour yellow. 

The whole thing began to look very ugly at a certain point, until the king intervened, that is, and The Leader of the Country grudgingly said they could go on with the rally in a stadium. Somehow, over the days that led to the rally, the stadium committee started being an ass, so in the end, that is yesterday, 9 July 2011 the group of NGOs had to resort to the street, supported by a group of 50,000 strong (according to them) or 6000 (according to the police) who walked from nearby train stations as all the roads to the city were blocked by the cops.  A total of 1401 people were arrested in KL, 1 man died, and countless others were tear gassed, and sprayed with water cannons.

To be continued

4 comments:

  1. The key word here is sensible which is what that certain group of people are in such short supply of.

    Looking forward to Part 2 :D

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  2. I feel such despair when I read this

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  3. I feel like I take my freedoms here in Australia for granted.

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  4. Nick: Driven by emotion and goodness knows what else.

    nursemyra: I'm sorry about that. I decided to write about it to remember the incident.

    Orhan: I think so did all of us in Malaysia, in the past, when there was more hope.

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