V For Vendetta is dangerous

June 24, 2007

If only for the ideals it espouses. If only for the warning that with a single incident, and others that follow, that any country on this planet, especially one that has a large, vulnerable middle-class to be exploited, can fall into the same trap that that London has fallen. The people are herdlike, they are frightened, and they are scared. It is never the enemy without that is the most dangerous, but the enemy within. The idea that you could be betrayed by someone who is close to you, someone you trust, is the easiest idea to spread. It is the easiest idea to take root, the easiest idea, to control.

It doesn’t help that earlier today, I finished reading Koushun Takami’s Battle Royale. While the book speaks about a country that has been frightened into subservience, the observation it makes is frighteningly similar to what V exposes. I can see now why the book (Codename: V) has been banned in certain places. It is not the storyline itself that is scary. It is not the characters themselves, but rather, what they represent. It is not that the ideal they propose is terrifying yet unreal. NO.

The ideas that people can be manipulated by their fears, the ideas that the very people the citizens (rakyat/people) of a country trusts to protect them, leads to a lesson that most parents learn when their children are adolescents. The more you make it forbidden, the more it simmers. The more the idea of freedom is tempting. However, as observed in Battle Royale, allowing the people certain small escapes, making them think that these little joys are all they have to be thankful for, works better at coralling people than the most absolute restrictions. It’s the same with V. People are happy to simply live. They are happy to simply survive. When you’re young, that’s something you cannot accept, but when you have children, your thoughts are no longer for yourself.

It is said by some people, that people do things for their children. Yet this normally happens on a personal level. It happens on a level that people can see, can touch, can see how it affects their lives directly. How many people would truly rise up against a government and say, “This is wrong,” even if they know it? How many?

Not enough.

Parents are afraid not for themselves, but for their children, should they choose to take that path. To make this country (not the world, that’s another story), I believe blood will have to be spilled. Not because it is the only and easiest way. I do not believe that. However, if we could have made this country better, if we could have clung to the ideals that gave birth to this nation in the first place, then we would have been welcomed to the negiotation table. We would have been able to sit down with the leaders of this country. Not only the political leaders, but the religious leaders who seem to wield more and more influence; influence that is becoming insidious. Influence that allows idiots like Nazri and bigots to flourish (I shall not name names because I do not want to give them traffic. If you wish to know who they are, look out for the bloggers who cannot seem to accept a viewpoint other than their own, and who will not fight for another’s person right to speak, because to speak would be to insult religions. And who say they study comparative religion, yet unable to find the faith to understand why others might not choose their path).

Malaysia is like that Britain of V. We became that country the moment we allowed fear of what happened in 1969 to happen. In this year, remember not just the 5th of November. Remember not just 31 August. Remember 13 May, 1969. Because that was the day we allowed fear to reign. That was the day we silenced ourselves.

And no, Black Office. I am not suggesting we blow up Parliament. It has not reached that stage… Yet.

12 Responses to “V For Vendetta is dangerous”

  1. Tiara said

    Bloodshed will only bring about bloodshed. Change will need to happen in more subtle inner ways.

    Also: notice how so many people use May 13 as a bogeyman of sorts, but there’s hardly any information about what exactly happened and what the implications are? It wasn’t even covered in our Sejarah books. We need a May 13 101 For Dummies page somewhere, if only so people know what actually happened and how it affects Malaysia till now.

    It looks like that one day got scapegoated for everything else and Malaysia is not moving on because they’re scared of that date. YouKnowWhen; the Voldie of dates. Hell I’m still not sure what happened exactly on that day, because I keep hearing conflicting information.

    Maybe that’s something you can do as a future post? Just the simple details about what happened and what it led to?

    Geminianeyes: You know, that’s a good idea.

  2. Raz said

    May 13 topic will always be locked and kept hidden form public, as long as racism exist in Malaysia and the reason to it is simple people who are racist in Malaysia are like methane gas, and May 13 is one of the match stick.

    Once light up, it explodes and when it do people die. Would you like to be a person who light up the match?

    I rather focus on luring racist people to accept and understand other race rather than lighting up of what had happened in the past.

    Geminianeyes: Yes, but why is it so difficult for these people to speak about the incident in the first place? What do they have to fear? Dialogue as what you wish in the above has always been clouded by May 13, and it is important that to plan for the future you must resolve the past, and it’s my belief that as long as May 13 remains unresolved, then racism in this country will always be clouded by that past, and we will not be able to move on. Don’t forget too, May 13 has been used by various politicians as a threat against a questioning of the status quo.

  3. Raz said

    “but why is it so difficult for these people to speak about the incident in the first place?”

    I had answered this with “racist in Malaysia are like methane gas, and May 13 is one of the match stick.”

    Why is it so difficult? because if you are surrounded by methane gas… do you dare to light up a match stick? and yes everyone know the answer to that is “no”.

    So please try not to ask question for answer that I had already given in the first place.

    “Dialogue as what you wish in the above has always been clouded by May 13, and it is important that to plan for the future”

    The future is based on the past, I agree but if you can’t even accept each other now what good does it do looking at the past? (If you can’t walk why look at the past when you were running? wont it be better to focus on the future and learn on how to walk again?)

    “Don’t forget too, May 13 has been used by various politicians as a threat against a questioning of the status quo.”

    Did you remember what happened to “some” politician that suddenly disappear and was charged for some stupid reason? Someone is governing the limit and when people cross it… they disappear.

  4. Tiara said

    Raz: The reason there is so much “methane gas”, as you put it, is because no one has dared to go to the pipeline and shut the damn thing off.

    Hiding from speaking the truth due to fear of consequences is only SUPPORTING the deception and chaos. Good things only happen when people do the right thing regardless of the possible consequences.

    If Pat is going to burn just because she dared light that match, then hell yeah I am going to burn with her.

  5. raz said

    Tiara: Shut the thing off does not make it disappear it just kept them in a temporary container, make them understand and accept each other would.

    My point is simple, work on the future not on the past. Cross breed, mix culture and remix it, make people understand that in the end globalization will take over and people will be united as one.

    You say no to war and yet you want to light up fire in a gas tank? where people would definitely DIE, and that is not only you nor your friend but people who have nothing to do with you… total stranger life destroyed just because you kept on wanting to light up something that can be approached in a peacefully manner.

    But noooo, say no to peace… we like fights, and arguments, and keep on talking and fighting on the stupidity of the past. Right?

    I am not hiding from the truth, May 13 did happened and many had paid for it in tears and blood.

    But the ultimate truth, we are living now in the present and walking to the future and that the people who are hiding form the real truth is the people who kept on looking at the past wanting to light up a fire on a fuel OF THE PAST.

    It’s time to clean up the dirt on our shoulder and clean trash on the road so that we can walk into the future and not bitching on how dirty it is or how dirty it used to be.

    Oh yeah what’s the right thing to do? look on our May 13 past to talk,argue,fight about it or walk on the present and look into the future?

  6. Tiara said

    Raz: I’m not saying no to peace. Far from it. However, we will never attain peace if we don’t learn from the past, if we keep denying the past.

    It’s like trying to get two squabbling families to get along, without knowing why they’re fighting in the first place. If you just went to investigate why they’re squabbling, you may find out that it was just a misunderstanding – then you can FIX the misunderstanding and en the squabbles.

    There have been many things that happened on that day (and even before) that has led to the situation now. Problem is, there’s hardly been any thorough attempt to understand what really happened. It’s been overblown to this one big bogeyman. The Wizard of Oz. When really it’s just some guy behind a screen.

    By really examining May 13, we can find the ROOT CAUSES for all this trouble. and by finding the ROOT CAUSES, we can start to CURE our ails. So far what we’ve been doing is putting on bandaids. We need to find out why we’re bleeding in the first place.

  7. raz said

    Don’t deny the past, but do put focus on the current and the future (in which race will no longer exist due to globalization)

    So why focus so much about race when it is going to disappear in the future? and why do we not instead focus on global warming for example? in which going to affect us NOW and the FUTURE?

  8. Please have fun talking to each other and no flaming. ^_^ This is quite interesting.

    Also, Ti, Raz is in this for the fun of debating itself. Raz dear, please be clear.

  9. Tiara said

    haha, devil’s advocate, eh?๐Ÿ˜‰

    We don’t know if race is going to “disappear” in the future. It certainly isn’t disappearing NOW. If we want a future where the notion of race is non-existent, we need to affect how racial relations affect us now.

    I’m a “Lain-Lain”. Racial relations in Malaysia affect me in a very real way. I can’t enter any public university, I can’t apply for scholarships or opportunities that adhere to a strict quota system. Even those that don’t have strict quotas are difficult for me because they only count Malay/Chinese/Indian, nothing more.

    As I am legally Muslim, I often get pulled into the Malay side and am told to support Malay interests. As I am “Other” I get pulled to the non-Malay side and am told to support non-Malay interests. Where the hell am I supposed to go?

    Race affects us NOW, and it will affect us in the FUTURE like it or not. By your logic, why focus on anything else? Is global warming the only important issue in the world? There should be a future without global warming, so we shouldn’t focus on it now, right?๐Ÿ˜›

  10. Raz said

    “We donโ€™t know if race is going to ‘disappear’ in the future.” It is, and you are a living proof that the step has been taken. After all what race are you? Lain-lain? Nah… you belong in the ultimate race, the human race.

    Oh and on the “lain-lain”, I am a mix too but instead of choosing which side and being dissed by people that has chosen side; I choose my own side. Viva la human! Yes I am more of a pro-human race rather than Malay/Chinese/Indian

    “There should be a future without global warming… “, Nope… with global warming we are all going to die.๐Ÿ˜›

    Tiara, Nao spilled it for you. Yes I am actually just in this for the debate itself and not for the topic, been a nice ride so far though.๐Ÿ™‚

    *Rolls away before he get smacked by Tiara*

  11. Tiara said

    It’s a good think Geminianeyes mentioned it, otherwise I’ll have to start questioning her choice of boyfriends๐Ÿ˜›

    Debates are cool๐Ÿ™‚

    Edited for Name.๐Ÿ˜›

  12. Tiara said

    *thing, rather. This flu is getting to my brain๐Ÿ˜›

    Geminianeyes: LOL. I always pick the ones who can debate with me, don’t you know?๐Ÿ˜€

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