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Monday, April 24, 2006

Black Metal Aliens! - Harian Metro strikes again...

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There is something seriously wrong - mentally - with the morons that run the Malay-language media. Really. We know all too well how Mastika is a classic basket case. But when Harian Metro ran this story:

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it really got my knickers bundled up in a twist - and any guy will readily tell you how painful that can be. But all kidding aside. First of all, the Black Metal connection to this story is really creative - think "black t-shirt" with a cross-like design (see article below), and viola! Another case of the Black Metal menace.

I've posted parts of the first article, below (All 3, in their ludicrous entireties, can be found here, here and here), and included an English translation.

The first head-liner article reads (and the translation in this color, with emphasis by myAsylum):

Dalang Black Metal Jawa (Javanese Black Metal Kingpin)


JOHOR BAHRU: Seorang lelaki dikenali sebagai Dhani, dipercayai menjadi orang kuat atau dalang penubuhan dan perhimpunan beberapa kumpulan ala ‘Black Metal’ yang dianggotai pekerja asing warga Indonesia di bandar raya ini, sejak beberapa bulan lalu.

A man, identified as "Dhani", is believed to be the focal point (or kingpin) in the organization, and convening, of several 'Black Metal' like groups, whose members are Indonesian foreign workers, here in this city, in the past few months.

Siasatan polis juga mendapati, selain Kadal, terdapat empat lagi kumpulan yang ditubuhkan berasaskan kampung asal mereka di Indonesia atau kecederungan terhadap muzik tertentu.

Police investigation has found that other than "Kadal", four other groups have been formed, centered around either their village of origin in Indonesia, or around a particular genre of music.

Empat kumpulan itu dikenali sebagai Gloos, Almojo, Slank serta Memden dan semua pengikutnya berkumpul di kawasan sekitar dan bawah jambatan di Batu 5, Tampoi, pada setiap hujung minggu.

The four groups have been identified as "Gloos", "Almojo", "Slank", and "Memden", and all their members congregate near or under the 5th Mile Tampoi bridge every weekend.

Dalam satu operasi di sekitar Tampoi minggu lalu, polis mengesan kewujudan kumpulan ala `Black Metal' digelar Kadal dengan menonjolkan imej ganas dan jalanan yang dipercayai wujud sejak beberapa bulan lalu.

In an operation around Tampoi last week, police detected the existence of a Black Metal styled group called "Kadal", portraying a violent and bohemian image, that is believed to have existed for the past few months.

Kumpulan itu yang dianggotai ahli di kalangan etnik Jawa saja menggunakan logo selipar berdarah yang ditusuk paku dan tulisan dalam bahasa Jawa ‘Teplek Ndeso’ (bermaksud selipar kampung).

The group, whose members consist of only ethnic Javanese, use a logo depicting a bloody nailed slipper (as in flip-flops), with a Javanese phrase "Teplek Ndeso" (which means village slipper/flip-flops).

Mereka mudah dikenali kerana memakai baju-T hitam lengkap dengan logo mereka serta tulisan ‘Indahnya Persaudaraan’. Bahagian hadapan baju mereka pula tertera lambang salib terbalik dan terselit di tengahnya gambar selipar.

They were identified because they wore black t-shirts, complete with their logo, plus the phrase "How Beautiful Brotherhood". The front of their shirts had inverted crosses, with a slipper in the middle.

Biarpun berselindung di sebalik hasrat berkongsi suka duka mencari rezeki di perantauan, imej ganas dan jalanan dengan berbaju hitam serta kegemaran berhibur sambil meminum arak di tempat awam, mula merimaskan masyarakat tempatan.

Despite hiding behind the intention of wanting to share their toils working in a foreign land, their violent and bohemian image, plus enjoying entertainment while drinking alcohol in a public place, has made the local populace uneasy.

Now, the only "crimes" I can see here are:
(a) they had black t's
(b) with what looks like an inverted cross for a logo,
(c) they were drinking alcohol and enjoying themselves, and
(d) they were Indonesian

Don't know about you, but doesn't this sound like a case of extremely contrived Xenophobia? And where exactly is the Black Metal connection? Black t-shirt with an "inverted cross", with a bloody slipper nailed to it, that's where. No mention of animal sacrifice. No mention of devil worship. But nevermind, because Black T-shirt = Black Metal.

Creative journalism? Or distortion of the truth? Now, let's take another, closer look at the offending so-called Black Metal t-shirt.

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You either have to be blind, stupid, or really hell-bent on associating anything unsavory with Black Metal (or a Malay tabloid journalist, a strange breed who actually possess all 3 wonderful attributes) to see an inverted cross with a bloody slipper nailed to it. I wouldn't even suggest "a stretch of the imagination", for obvious reasons.

It looks more like a slipper (all of it looks pinkish, so I don't know how they see a "bloody" slipper) in the middle of a 4-way stylized roundabout, perhaps symbolizing the coming together of these migrant workers from the four corners of their daily toil to make a decent living. But then again, maybe it's because I have an I.Q.

But here's the thing - Harian Metro did not make the raid up. Like the ever obedient rabid lap-dog, they merely played along, and reported in their ever so sensationalist, pseudo-journalistic, bigoted style. A tool for the "greater good"...

It really did happen, carried out by 55 individuals comprising the police, Immigration, JB City Council, Johor Religious Department, and RELA (a.k.a. them gun-weilding citizen paramilitary bully squad, best known for their effectiveness in harassing immigrant workers). Talk about a well-coordinated, cross-departmental harassment squad.

And shouldn't they be concentrating on the real crime problem in Johor Baru? But, of course, this operation is a lot easier, especially with black t-shirts involved. Especially when the victims perpetrators are immigrant workers. RELA's area of specialty anyway.

The other two articles are essentially follow ups, and will not be translated (really not worth the effort). Go read them yourself... maybe the Black Metal Media Watch Blog will translate them.

So, the stupidity continues. The authorities going after the easy (but mostly harmless) targets, while the real violent criminal activity in JB continues unabated.

Nowhere in the 3 news articles was there any mention of locals being harassed or attacked by these migrant Black Metallers. But hey, who am I to act surprised. This is the same country where holding hands and kissing are considered grave and immoral crimes. So, of course it's wrong to have fun, especially when it's on the rowdy side. No-brainer there, right?

Malaysia, truly insane... and be extra careful that the next black t-shirt you wear doesn't have anything remotely looking like a cross... no matter how innocuous it may seem.