Tag Archives: politics

Indonistan Pt.2

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BBC dan Guardian ikutan memberitakan Ahok divonis bersalah karena penistaan agama. Iya, saya tahunya dari situ, karena saya malas ngikutin berita online di Indonesia. Berita online di Indonesia masih belum selevel dengan berita TV atau koran, baik dari sisi cek dan ricek, bias, dan juga tata cara penulisan. Mungkin karena mereka maunya cepat, dan jadi yang pertama memberitakan sesuatu, lalu lupa bahwa “cepat” bukan satu-satunya tolok ukur reportase yang baik… “akurat” juga.

Eeeeniwei… saya bukan anak jurnalistik, cuma ikut kelas dasar-dasar jurnalistik satu semester saja. Jadi, biarlah anak (dan lulusan) studi jurnalistik yang mengomentari dunia jurnalisme online di Indonesia.

Kembali ke Ahok saja ya…

Setelah beberapa bulan persidangan, dengan berbagai macam kontroversi saat prosesnya, akhirnya calon mantan gubernur DKI Jakarta itu divonis bersalah juga. Meskipun saksi-saksi yang diajukan ternyata banyak yang bodong, meskipun ada bukti yang ternyata video editan… si Cina Kafir itu divonis bersalah juga.

Saya rasa memang sudah saatnya. Bukan saya menunggu-nunggu Ahok kena batunya, tapi saya tahu bahwa Indonesia belum siap dengan kebebasan berpendapat dan berbicara di ruang publik. Bukan saya merasa Ahok bersalah, tapi saya tahu bahwa negara ini memang tidak adil pada golongan minoritas. Saya tidak perlu menyebutkan contoh, karena semua orang bisa lihat sendiri — bukan cuma kalian yang di Indonesia, orang-orang di sini juga bisa lihat kok. Buktinya sampai diberitakan di BBC dan Guardian.

Kecewa? Hm… iya, sedikit. Kaget? Tidak sama sekali. Ingat Jessica? Atau Antasari Azhar? Sama seperti kedua kasus tersebut, bukti-bukti lemah, saksi-saksi tidak kredibel… tetap saja vonis bersalah. Dan seperti yang saya bilang waktu yang lalu — kalau ini bisa terjadi pada Jessica dan Antasari Azhar — dan sekarang Ahok, ini bisa terjadi pada siapa saja.

Sebenarnya saya malas ikut-ikutan komen… Tapi ini bulan Mei, dan biasanya di bulan Mei saya lebih sensi dari biasanya.

whatever…

Tiba-tiba nyesel revert back ke Bahasa Indonesia. I don’t feel like I want to be an Indonesian right now…

Kabayan…

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Salah satu hal yang paling saya sukai adalah ngobrol dengan orang pinter. Ngobrol dengan orang pinter — nggak harus ngobrol langsung lah, lewat facebook status aja misalnya, bisa menginspirasi saya. Dari inspirasi… tada… blog post!

Pernah denger tentang Kabayan? Kalo kamu seumuran sama saya, pasti kamu inget tokoh Kabayan dari buku pelajaran SD, atau dari film layar lebar si Kabayan yang diperankan oleh almarhum Didi Petet. Saya sendiri mengenal Kabayan lebih dekat karena papa saya yang asalnya dari Tasikmalaya, sangat suka dengan karaktern ini. Ya… Kabayan memang quintessentially Sunda. *mati gue, quintessential itu Bahasa Indonesianya apa ya?*

Karakter Kabayan ini digambarkan sebagai seorang yang berasal dari kampung, biasanya pengangguran proletar, juga tidak pernah mengenyam bangku sekolah formal. Tapi, si Kabayan ini selain setengah mati jatuh cinta pada Nyi Iteung, anak gadis si Abah dan Ambu, juga terkenal baik hati dan cerdik luar biasa. Biasanya cerita berkisar mengenai Kabayan yang terlibat masalah karena Abah tidak menyetujui hubungannya dengan Nyi Iteung, tapi berhasil mengelabuhi Abah yang terkenal sebagai tokoh berpendidikan di kampungnya…

Ngerti kan?

Mau dibawa ke mana pembicaraan ini? Well… Ceritanya beberapa menit yang lalu saya membaca, mengomentari, dan akhirnya terlibat diskusi singkat dengan… um… si Gigit (sebut aja begitu, karena dia hobi membuat status facebook yang mengigit… oke? Terima aja). Nah, dari obrolan itu, saya dan si Gigit punya teori yang berbeda tentang orang bodoh, dan orang yang tidak berpendidikan.

Menurut saya, ada perbedaan yang mendasar antara orang bodoh, dan orang yang tidak berpendidikan. Meskipun keduanya sama-sama tidak diuntungkan keadaan, kita bisa mendidik orang yang tidak berpendidikan menjadi orang terdidik, tapi kita tidak bisa memintarkan orang yang pada dasarnya bodoh. Saya selalu menganalogikan otak manusia seperti prosesor komputer.

Orang bodoh adalah orang dengan kapasitas otak Intel Celeron… bagi yang masih muda dan imut, dan belom pernah denger Intel Celeron, itu adalah prosesor sebelum Intel Pentium, dan Intel Pentium adalah prosesor sebelum Intel Core. Sedangkan orang tidak berpendidikan itu adalah orang dengan HD yang masih kosong, karena belom download software apa-apa. Orang tidak berpendidikan bisa dididik, sama seperti kita bisa mengisi HD yang kosong… tapi kalo prosesornya ble’e, ya percuma softwarenya tidak bisa dipakai — seperti orang bodoh, bisa dikasih tahu tapi belom tentu mereka ngerti bagaimana menggunakan pengetahuan itu.

Bagaimana kamu tau itu orang pintar atau bodoh? Atau apakah dia berpendidikan atau tidak?

Seperti biasa saya punya pendapat yang tidak terlalu populer, tapi berhubung saya ngomong di blog saya sendiri, jadi tidak ada yang menyensor. Ahaay…

Menurut saya, tidak ada alat ukur pintar-bodoh, cantik/bagus-jelek, sehat-sakit, gendut-kurus, dan lain sebagainya yang mutlak dan sempurna. Tapi, ada alat ukur, dan secara definisi, yang namanya alat ukur itu harus bisa distandardisasi, dan standardisasi paling oke adalah yang bisa dikuantifikasi — artinya bisa ditunjukkan dengan angka… Misalnya, buat standar bagus/cantik-jelek kita punya golden ratio Fibonacci (kalo bingung, google! jangan males…). Kalau mau standar gendut-kurus kita pake standar BMI. Pintar bodoh pun bisa diukur dengan test IQ.

Yaa yaa yaa… IQ bukan segalanya, ada EQ ada SQ whatever… Saya ga peduli dengan yang dua terakhir itu. Tidak ada standardisasi EQ atau SQ, dan tanpa standar ukur, saya akan selalu ragukan objektivitas pengukurnya.

Balik ke si Kabayan ya? Saya yakin kalau Kabayan bisa dites IQ, dia bisa jadi punya IQ di atas rata-rata. Banyak kok orang dengan IQ tinggi tapi tidak sekolah. Banyak juga orang dengan IQ rendah lulus dengan nilai bagus di sekolah — kerja keras itu ngepek, Bro. Tapi maksudnya apa saya ngomong panjang lebar tentang ini, dan hubungannya dengan pembicaraan saya dengan si Gigit?

Jadi gini, Git… Kalo orang itu bodo, ya udah kamu nggak bisa ngapa-ngapain lagi. Ini menjawab pertanyaan: Kok bisa sih lulusan universitas negeri terkenal di Indonesia percaya sama teori bumi datar? Atau, kok bisa sih lulusan luar negeri macam si Blabla masih kolot, dan rasis macam begitu? Karena kita bisa mendidik orang bodoh, tapi kita tidak bisa membuat orang bodoh menjadi pintar… Ini masalah kapasitas otak, dan sayangnya sampai saat ini ga banyak cara untuk mengupgrade otak setelah lewat golden age. Buat orang-orang yang udah terlanjur tua dan bego, kamu bener… kita cuma bisa kasian karena buat mereka sudah terlambat…

Dan kamu juga bener, ini juga efek over populasi. Semakin banyak anak, semakin sedikit perhatian yang bisa diberikan kepada mereka di saat golden age mereka. Tidak cukup nutrisi, tidak cukup pendidikan. Tapi ini satu-satunya solusi yang bisa saya pikirkan buat memintarkan generasi berikutnya. Generasi hari ini udah kadung, Sis…

 

Indonistan

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Even though it is not a direct cause, the governor election in Jakarta which has happened last week has something to do with the re-activation of this blog. Once the result of the vote was out, it is difficult not to have any opinion about it.

You’re not a residence of DKI Jakarta, Byq. What does it do to you?

You know what? Even if it does not affect me directly, you have to remember that I spent years of my university years in Jakarta. I have friends, family members, and relatives working, and living in Jakarta, and it definitely affects them and their lives. So, even if it doesn’t affect me directly, this voting result does affect people that I know.

But it does.

It does affect me directly. It does affect me in a personal level as so many attacks were thrown to people of minority groups like myself. It is not only about the defeat of a governor candidate, it is the defeat of progress.

Months ago you thought that Indonesia (or at least Jakarta) has changed a bit. You kind of hoped that finally you can start living in a country where people are no longer politically driven by their religious fanaticism. You kind of hope that for once, in the capital city — where you really put your hope of progression of mankind on — you could see how faith in humanity could be restored.

But of course, you shouldn’t be surprised, should you?

This has happened all around the world, why wouldn’t it happen in Indonesia too? The rise of the far right radicals — which in Indonesia is represented by PKS and FPI (and any organisation similar to them).

Some friends has been joking about the day when Indonesia one day would be transformed into Indonistan. A place where the government will no longer be free of religious intervention, a place where the leaders are more afraid of being called infidels than being fair and just. A place where minority groups will once more being oppressed, and bullied. That joke though… is no longer funny.

It reviving the refugee nightmare in me. It reminds me the day when my parents were about to send me out of the country to save myself from people who will harm us — just because we are minorities. It is basically a reminder that until today, or maybe forever, I would never be welcomed completely in Indonistan Indonesia.

Some people are still trying to console themselves by saying that this is not the end of the world — that Ahok might still have a place somewhere in Indonesia’s politics. Well… maybe. But really? I think it’s just anticlimactic. The country had the chance to bring the country into an overdrive with him… But… of course…

I am not in Jakarta right now. Heck, I am not even in Indonesia right now, and I am super glad that I am not. I am not feeling any patriotic right now, but why should I be? How could I be? I am sorry for those who are now stuck in Indonistan, and just don’t know how to get away from this sticky situation. I am just hoping that I would never have to come back… at least not while the country is still screwed like this…

Shell

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The votes are counted, and the first round of the regional election has finished today. And I am gobsmacked with the result. Although, I am not surprised… not at all.

In the kind of political climate around the world today, anything could happen. Brexit. Trump. Anything, I said.

Maybe it is a bit late for me to post about Ahok now. But I’d like to talk about it regardless…

A food for thought, mainly.

The fact that this election today has to go to the second round is an eye opener for the die hard supporters of Ahok. It is a reminder that it doesn’t matter how loud you are on the media, or social media — those opinions you are shouting, or typing, never got to those whose vote you are trying to get.

You are not reaching out to people whose opinions count.

I watch a discussion about satire on BBC yesterday. About how satire has become the “it” thing with the smart people. Satire is now highbrow, and exclusive. And that satire, which used to be the media’s weapon to reach out, now is missing the target audience. One of the panellists said something along the line: these hipsters are only talking to other hipsters… Just like you.

You are only talking to your own kind, to others who are just like you. Those who are agreeing with you. Because those who are not, are either stupid ignorant people, whose voices you dismissed. You are… honestly… just like me.

I have to admit that I am guilty for doing that too.

I once asked in a group on Facebook — this group is called ABAM, by the way. I asked them why they bothered to answer questions coming from people who were obviously only trying to troll, or just being a bigot. I told them that.. to be honest, I wouldn’t have either patience, or passion to do it. Maybe… maybe it is a good thing that I am not an educator.

These people, who are so passionate in educating people, reaching out and trying to open up minds, told me their reasons. It is not to change people’s mind, but to open it up so that they can think for themselves. It is not to make them to agree with us, but to make them see our point of view, so that maybe in the end we could agree to disagree — peacefully. It answers to inform, not answers to patronise.

I couldn’t do that.

Most of the time, when things heated up, I just left the conversation. Like that time when I talked to someone from Interpal.

But I might be in the wrong here.

Obviously what I’ve done was no different from these remain campaigners in the UK, Hillary’s supporters in the UK, and Teman Ahok volunteers in Jakarta. I am just talking to my own kind. I don’t reach out, and I don’t speak to enough people to make a difference.

I AM too living in a shell.

Back to the election now.

I think there are still time for Teman Ahok, if they want, to reach out to these swing voters. I just hope they realise this before it is too late.

Now then… I wish you the best of luck.

Prost!

A Year to Reflect?

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The New Year has gotten me thinking.

It started after Mr. Fix-it’s holiday started few weeks ago, and we had so much time watching TV and doing virtually nothing. One of the show on the telly was this series “It was alright in…”. There were three of them — 1990, 1980, and 1970. Get it? So there were three episodes of them, each represents the decade, and what was acceptable in that decade which is no longer or slightly dubious nowadays.

Some celebrities, coming from different generations and age groups, were invited to make comments on what they saw on the screen — whether it was how news were presented, the comedy show, the unPC comments on talk shows, or even the (lack of) fashion sense. And, it was meant to be a light hearted, and was supposed to be in the comedy side.

I did found some of them quite funny, or even embarrassingly hilarious.  The ones from 1980s and 1990s that is. But when we were watching the one from 1970, things got slightly disturbing — even for me.

Things have changed, haven’t they?

It wasn’t as far as the Elizabethan time, Victorian time, or even the world wars time. It was only forty years ago, and look how far we have moved on. How much we have changed, as a society. And even it does make me excited, enthusiastic, and hopeful, it does make me feel scared too.

It made me think of myself, in thirty to forty years from now, where would this blog be? Would my ideas, and ideology still be relevant? Would I be in the right side of history?

I would like to think that I am doing the right thing, but I am sure that there were so many people in the 70s thinking that they were one of the most forward thinking and open minded people too. And they were not. What if in decades from now I would be the bigoted one?

You know what?

I think I should start this year by apologise in advance. For me and for people in the future. If this blog is still around by then, and if the world has changed so much and this blog has become offensive, and no longer relevant to the current sociopolitical correctness then — I apologise.

This blog is not perfect, but today, in this time period, I am trying to do what is right according to our sociopolitical situation today. If there are any wrongdoing, offence, etc. it wouldn’t be intentional. It is just what is acceptable today.

We have different questions, different priorities, and different cultural movements compared to the world in the 1970s. I believe things would be different too in 2050s or 2080s.

So, apart from apology, I would also use this blog to reflect, review, and retrospect, or even retract. Things have changed, and it will keep changing, and the only way I could be relevant is by knowing the changes.

That’s for today. See you again soon 🙂

2016 — Not Looking Back In Anger

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To be honest… 2016 was probably not the best year you want to remember, wasn’t it? I mean… really…

Just when you think that the death of Lemmy in the end of last year was the end of the count, you heard about David Bowie, and Alan Rickman within a week. And, when in the end of the month I told Mr. Fix-it that Terry Wogan was gone as well, he asked me to stop updating him with these distressing news.

But really… the big names were not the only ones going. The humanitarian issues from Syrian refugees, to the Rohingyas in Myanmar. The bombings both in the Middle East, and in Europe, and the terrorist attacks like those in Nice and in Berlin were just few of the examples. One that was much much closer to heart was the death of Jo Cox, obviously… The Labour MP who was murdered by someone who was and is still not worth mentioned or remembered. No… seriously, that ‘someone’ is so pathetic, that I refuse to mention his name in this blog — and after all that guy has already found guilty and I am glad with the decision.

When we mentioned Jo Cox, we would also remember Brexit, and when we talk about Brexit we also remember the 2016 US Presidential Election. Both were shocking for some people, and surprising for the others. I can mention some people who are still not able to move on from both events.

Oh yes…

2016 hasn’t finished with us really…

Both in the UK and in Indonesia, the rise of bigotry and intolerance increased with the rate I have never seen before. Seems like one side is fuelling the other with hatred… Same hatred, different side of the fence. It is getting both tiring and worrying, but not as worrying as MY own problem– my visa extension application.

It was done in the end, but… it was quite traumatic (if you want to know about the details, I would talk specifically about it later — but not now, because we are not talking about it now…), but gee… It is not as traumatic as finding a dead cat in our host’s house when we were visiting in laws in Wales for Christmas (yes… I know…).

So… there you go, 2016. It is almost the end of the year, and I do really hope that all those would make a good excuse for not posting for the last month. YES!!

All these effort to write an elaborate post just to excuse myself for slacking from writing. Apologies. I will try to do better next year…

Prost!

 

Law[less] and [Dis]order

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I love watching Law&Order. Husband, not so much — but really, I am the one with the remote control in the house so he has to deal with whatever crap he thinks he’s watching. I’ve been watching Law&Order since I was in high school and old enough to understand the awesomeness of the program.

Of course I understand, that for some people it is not more than usual crime drama. For me it is more than that. It is more than CSI where a group of people are sweeping the crime scene, trying to solve the puzzle. With Law&Order, the puzzle is usually not difficult, nor unique. It is usually just a common crime done by common people. But that’s not all it is about.

The original Law and Order has this very famouse narration in the beginning of the show:

In the criminal justice system, the people are represented by two separate, yet equally important, groups: the police, who investigate crime; and the district attorneys, who prosecute the offenders. These are their stories.

Got it? That’s at least the idea of how the criminal justice system works in the US.

How about Indonesia?

I’ve been thinking about this a lot since the trial for Jessica started weeks ago. The official trial, that is. Months ago, I have talked about this, and I have sensed how scarily flawed our criminal justice system — that is, if we based our judgement on this trial. How even the judge seems to “nudge nudge wink wink” with the persecutor, ignoring the fact that this case has not got enough evidence to go on a trial.

Yes. Of course… I have watched enough Law&Order to understand that there is something called “Circumstantial Evidence”. Unlike CSI who are working with hard evidence such as DNA, fingerprint, fibres, and blood spatters, the detectives in L&O also works with circumstantial evidences. What are they? Motives, opportunities, and alibi, and the like.

http://www.imfdb.org/wiki/File:L%26OUK_poster.jpg - I was going to post Jessica's photo, but really... if she's proven innocent, I don't want to be responsible to be one of those people who immortalise this trauma for her. So... How about Law and Order UK instead? -

http://www.imfdb.org/wiki/File:L%26OUK_poster.jpg – I was going to post Jessica’s photo, but really… if she’s proven innocent, I don’t want to be responsible to be one of those people who immortalise this trauma for her. So… How about Law and Order UK instead? –

However… “She looks dodgy” is not a circumstantial evidence, it is an opinion. “Her attitude is unusal” is not a circumstantial evidence either. It might lead the investigation to find evidence, but opinion is opinion and SHOULD NEVER EVER be used as an evidence. Circumstantial evidence could be: “oh she’s got a connection to someone who can get her cyanide”, or “this is the evidence that she will gain something from the death of the other girl”, or “this is the evidence of the relationship in the past, and here are some witnesses who heard her said something about killing this woman”. Strong circumstantial evidence.

What I saw in the trial of Jessica was criminalisation. The fact that the case is so high profile, and the eyes of the media are all on it, it would be embarrassing for the persecutor to ditch the case and admit that there’s no case against this woman. It reminds me of the trial of the former KPK director Antasari Azhar.

At that time there were NO evidence linking him to the case. It was clear that the evidences were planted, and even the circumstantial evidence were made up. The witnesses disappeared after the trial, so that nobody could prove that they have committed perjury. Even the family of the victim begged the court to continue the investigation and release Antasari as they KNOW that it wasn’t him who killed their beloved one.

But in the end, they brought him down anyway.

And, hey! If it worked for a high profile individual like Antasari Azhar — a man with such a status, well known as someone who’s always in the right side of the law, why can’t it work to Jessica? She’s just a young woman, visiting home to see family and friends — maybe for Chinese New Year — oh and minority too. Should be easy, isn’t it?

But if it worked to Antasari Azhar and Jessica, two high profile cases in the country, how do you know that there are no cases like them that is not covered by the media? How do you know that if one day you are so unfortunate being caught up in a criminal case, and you’re innocent… How do you know that you could get a fair trial? How do you know that you can rely on your evidences, alibis, and innocence? How do you know that things would be alright if you do everything right?

You don’t.

http://www.metrotvnews.com/embed/0k8gEPob

To close my entry today, I will give you a video… The video is a fragment from Metro TV’s program NSI (News Story Insight) presented by Aviani Malik about the victims of wrong persecution that you might have never heard before.

Prost

Making Sense of Money

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How do you know you have more money than sense?

Well… In the UK, one comedian said: When you buy a biography written by a fictional meerkat millionaire — who was invented in an advertising campaign.

In the tech world: When you actually drill a hole on your iPhone7 to make a earphone slot.

In Indonesia: You ask someone to magically double your money.

Byq… What the hell are you talking about?

As much as Indonesia is a predominantly Muslim country, there is a big percentage of people who believe in supernatural stuff — that is more cultural related than religion. Some people believe in local magical creatures, or superstitious old midwives’ tale. Some believe that other people possess supernatural powers.

We were once — or even until today– crazy about indigo kids. We loved it when some villagers claimed that their goat’s poo could help curing cancer. We were ecstatic when a kid sit on the table, smoking cigarettes and ramble something, pretending that they’re connecting to the spirit of the dead. And some believes that some people could double your money by keeping the money in a box, and pray over it.

You’re right, I am talking about that religious cult.

It surprised my parents that people could be THAT stupid. It surprised me that they were genuinely surprised to see how people could be THAT stupid. I mean, they have lived longer than I do, I always assumed they have seen more stupid people in their lifetime than I have. Apparently not… Longer life doesn’t guarantee fuller experience.

It surprised my father that people THAT stupid could have a lot of money. I told him that some people have more sense than money. And money can’t buy common sense. He’s happy with my answer.

It surprised my mother that there are thousands of people actually believe this, and still believe in the leader even after all his lies are now open in public. I told her that it’s what a brainwash do to people. The difference is that if the number of believers is in thousands it is called a cult, and if it is in billions, it is called a religion. She’s not amused — doesn’t matter, because I do 😀

And you know what surprised me? What surprised me is that one of the political leader in Indonesia — a public figure people seen as an educated person, that can be trusted — a member of a political party in Indonesia believed that shit too. Not only that he was once endorsed this cult leader as “National Treasure”, he even involved in the cult, and be a member of it. It is amazing that every time I go back and visit Indonesia, I can always find something that is so pathetic it is amusing.

It never ceases to keep us entertained.

Anyway, if you really don’t know why believing that anyone could double your money while keeping it inside the box is stupid, let me explain to you how money actually work. The simple way. Just because I am feeling generous today.

The history of money started when people start trading. People used to bartered their goods with other people, but then barter system gets really difficult as you would have to find someone who wants your goods and has the goods that you want at the same time. And they have to be in the same value, so whoever trading could get a fair trade.

People then invented money system. It helps trading and valuing goods and services. The money we know today is printed by the government, and circulated by the national bank. So, if the government printed X amount of money, that will be the money that is in the circulation. IF anyone claim they can double the amount of money you put in the box… how can he do it without changing the amount of money circulated by the national bank? No they can’t, because they can’t print their own money.

Simple logic.

 

Burkini, Duterte’s Middle Finger, and Indonesia

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The video of the Philippines’s president dropping the F-bomb to the EU has — unsurprisingly — gone viral. I have never noticed this new president until his conversation with Indonesian president — about the Philippine’s citizen who were convicted for smuggling drugs and now in death row in Indonesian’s prison — went viral too few weeks ago.

How refreshing.

Now, don’t get me wrong, I don’t condone what he does. However I do believe that every country has a right, and sovereignty to make their own internal law. In Indonesia, Malaysia, and the Philippines, for example, drug smuggling means capital punishment. It is beyond me that so many people couldn’t just let them be.

President Duterte called them a bunch of hypocrites. I can see why he does.

In France you are not allowed to wear burkini in the beach, because French has A LAW against it. When people around the world criticise this law, and condemn this too, one of my French friends would get very offended and tell other non-French people off for failing to understand what this religious symbols mean for the French people.

In America, you can carry guns. When some people got killed, lots of people around the world would criticise their gun laws. But a friend from America said to me once, people who are non-American don’t understand that it is their law, and their rights to carry a gun, and what those rights and law mean for the American people.

Why don’t the same rules applied to third world countries like Indonesia or the Philippines?

Indonesia was under a massive scrutiny when we were about to execute nine Australian drug smugglers. People said that the death penalty for drug smuggler is inhumane and barbaric. Now the Philippines has to endure the same thing, because the president is doing a so called “bloody war against drug” in his country.

People who are not Indonesian and not Filipino don’t understand how drug, and drug cartel has undermined the very core of the country. They deliberately introduced drugs to underages, and school children. And, these people won’t back down just by threats of prison time, unlike most criminals in first world countries like the UK, US, or some European countries.

Drug is different in first world country, and third world country. People in the UK called it recreational drug, but it is no recreation at all in Indonesia. When I showed my objection towards drugs to my ex, he felt heavily offended — as for him recreational drug is a part of… you know, youth freedom, the trial and error of life, hippy kind of thing… For me? Coming from Indonesia, it is the reflection of either rich people gone bad, or poor people trying to run away from life, by ruining it even worse.

Do I know someone who died from drugs? I do. But I am not going to speak for him or his family. I leave it at that.

I just want to tell people who complained about this drug war, and burkini. If you want to go to a beach and wearing burkini, don’t go to Nice. There are plenty other places where you can wear your unique looking – sharia approved – beachwear — try Tunisia, their tourism has been suffering after the gunman attack to British tourists few years ago. If you want to go to the beach, and at the same time wanting to be able to get high on drugs, don’t go to Bali. There are plenty other beaches where you can kill yourself slowly, without the government having to help you with the means of firing squad.

Prost!

Norwich Pride And A Lesson About Tolerance

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We went to gay pride again. I love going there because it gives me the sense of acceptance, tolerance, and even belonging. It is great to be surrounded by people, who embrace difference and for once after so many weeks of feeling uncomfortable in my own skin, I felt wonderful. I dressed up, and dolled up, –and with my lovely open minded wonderful husband– went to Norwich city centre.

Alle möglichen Leute waren da.

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The sun was up, but not for long. Soon enough the cloud took over and a bit of drizzle sprinkled the sky with cooling spray. None of those stopped us from being… well… gay 😀 We’re marching from the Forum to Chapelfield garden — this is new because usually we walked from Chapelfield Garden to the Forum.

This is when things got more interesting.

Every year, when we’re parading, there would be someone holding an anti-gay poster on the route. Usually only four or five people gathering while waving us the posters, and in return the paraders would cheered back at them.

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Cheered. Not jeered.

It was a “Wooohoooo!!” and lots of clapping, instead of a massive “Booo!!”.

Yes.

Nobody went to attack anyone, verbally nor physically. It mad me think… how the hell this could happen here, but not in my homeland in Indonesia? When I came home that day I found that some Buddhist temples in the town of Tanjung Balai, Sumatra were attacked, damaged, and even burned down — because allegedly ones voiced their concerns about the loudness of the Muslim’s call for prayer there.

Then I realised… Here in Norwich, we are playing the same game, and obeying the same rule. We believe that everybody could have their opinion without being physically or verbally abused. We know that the authorities would police the regulation, and make sure everybody has that right to voice their thought as long as it is not abusive.

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Like those people with anti gay posters in the gay parade.

Like that woman in hijab who took photo in the anti muslim rally.

In Indonesia? If voicing a concern about a loud speaker from a mosque ended up in the burning of seven Buddhist temples… Imagine what would happen to a gay man carrying a beautiful rainbow flag in front of FPI rally? Do you think the Indonesian police officers would protect his right to voice his opinion? Do you think FPI would cheered his bravery for coming out? Nope… he would either ended up in the hospital or even… six feet under.

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Now you think…

Prost!