Offending sensibilities isn’t necessarily a crime, says human rights activist Marina Mahathir.
Commenting on the arrest of controversial rapper Namewee over his newest music video, Marina told FMT she felt the police action was extreme and probably prompted by a need to appease oversensitive Muslims.
“We can’t keep kowtowing to people who spend most of their time being offended. I find it rather offensive that they are offended,” she quipped.
Marina made a similar statement about oversensitive Muslims in a blog posting last January. She cited several “ridiculous things” that she said they would get hysterical over, including the alleged presence of pig DNA in chocolates and crucifix-like designs on the roofs of houses.
She had added that she couldn’t understand why Malaysian Muslims were not ashamed to admit their faith was weak and in need of constant protection.
Criticising Namewee’s arrest, she said, “He should not have been treated that way. The authorities should look at the video properly and find out what laws he has broken. Just because people are offended, it doesn’t mean that it’s a crime.”
She said she hadn’t seen the video herself.
The 33-year-old Namewee, whose real name is Wee Meng Chee, was arrested at the Kuala Lumpur International Airport on Sunday. He has been remanded for four days.
The offending video is for his song “Oh My God.” It shows him rapping in front of places of worship around the country.
Prematilaka KD Serisena, the Secretary-General of the Malaysian Consultative Council of Buddhism, Christianity, Hinduism, Sikhism and Taoism had also spoken to FMT regarding the matter, saying that people needed a platform to voice their frustrations.
He said that the best way to deal with them was to hear them out. Sending Namewee to jail would only make matters worse, he added.
Sheith Khidhir Bin Abu Bakar