Wednesday, November 12, 2008

When singing your national anthem is a criminal act

Last weekend, the Malaysian goon squads police arrested a peaceful crowd who had gathered to protest Malaysia's infamous ISA law in Petaling Jaya, a tony suburb of the capital Kuala Lumpur. The 23 demonstrators arrested included opposition politicians and members of the local media.

Apparently, they were also arrested because they had the temerity to sing the Malaysian national anthem, "NegaraKu" ('My Country').

The state police chief has questioned the rationale behind Internal Security Act (ISA) protesters singing the national anthem at their illegal gathering near the Amcorp Mall on Sunday.

“Are they expecting policemen to stand at attention each time they sing the anthem? If so, what would happen if every criminal that we confront starts singing the national anthem?” asked Deputy Comm Datuk Khalid Abu Bakar.

He questioned whether the protesters sang NegaraKu to keep the police at bay or that they (the protesters) themselves did not respect the anthem.

Whatever happened to the presumption of innocence and the idea that 'dissent is the highest form of patriotism'? I guess the Malaysian Enforcers of the Regime didn't get that memo. Now, normal citizens singing the Malaysian national anthem in public is considered a criminal act, got it everyone?

Thanks so much, BN!

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