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Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Opinion Poll: Censorship & Suppression of Ideas

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Unless you’ve been living under a rock without Internet, you would have heard by now the problems that ZI Publications has had with the “law”… Not civil law, but Selangor Syariah law. It’s a reminder that we are, after all, living in 1Apartheid.

The Legion of Silencers has once again struck, it would seem…

Long story short, Irshad Manji’s “Allah, Liberty & Love”, and it’s Bahasa Malaysia translation, “Allah, Kebebasan & Cinta”, have been banned by the Malaysian government, although no gazette has been officially issued as yet.

This is the latest is the long standing tradition of banning things in Malaysia, something that some of our fellow Malaysians seem to be proud of. And of course, when things like this happen, you know that a myAsylum poll can’t be too far away.

The pretext of this latest banning, as with many others before it: protection of Islam and Muslims. And it is because what Irshad Manji writes about. And believe it or not, what she writes about is about MORE than just sex, something what most Malaysians have been led to believe the book is about.

Frankly, Walski has not read the book – yet – so he can’t tell you exactly what it is about. It is a safe bet that those who have been instrumental in the book’s banning have not read it either. But based on what he surmises, sex is NOT the central topic, and very likely NOT a topic at all.

In fact, why don’t we do away with supposition and hearsay, for once, and find out what the chapter topics in the book are:

  • Introduction: From Anger to Aspiration
  • Chapter 1: Some Things are More Important than Fear
  • Chapter 2: Identity Can Trap You, But Integrity Will Set You Free
  • Chapter 3: Culture is Not Sacred
  • Chapter 4: You Define Your Honor
  • Chapter 5: Offense is the Price of Diversity
  • Chapter 6: In Times of Moral Crisis, Moderation is a Cop-Out
  • Chapter 7: Lack of Meaning is The Real Death Threat

And perhaps most “shocking” of all, Recipe: Irshaddering Chai Tea (which follows after Chapter 7).

So far, thankfully, the MCMC has not ordered’s site to be blocked, and it is quite easily accessible, so go verify the table of contents for yourself, since the “majority” of Malaysians probably view Walski as nothing but a lying bastard not worthy of being believed.

Funny, but Walski couldn’t find one single mention of the word sex in the table of contents. Or perhaps it was the new offensive word in the book’s title that got the clerics’ panties in a bundle: liberty.
(the poll, its details, and more, in the full post)

In any case, back to the poll – this time around, you get to pick THREE (3) choices out of the list given. Or suggest your own answer, reflecting what you think.

Not what you reckon the government wants to achieve, but WHAT YOU THINK. It may come as a surprise to you, but here at myAsylum you are allowed to express what you really think, unlike in most parts of real-world Malaysia.

As with other polls before this, you can share this poll via your Blogger blog (by clicking the icon below the poll, located at the sidebar on the right), or if your blogging platform of choice is Wordpress, you can use the shortcode [polldaddy poll="6256206"]. On other platforms, drop Walski a line via the comments and he’ll provide you the codes you need.

IMPORTANT NOTE: Being that Walski has been labeled a “liberal” by most quarters, and being that these days, being a liberal is deemed to be a bigger sin than murder and rape, it would be a good idea for you to tell your friends of ALL orientations to participate in this poll. Only because Walski DOES want to know the opinions of everyone, and not just the opinions of like-minded people. Yes, we liberals are strange that way.

The poll will be open until Midnight, Sunday, June 10, 2012, after which Walski will announce the results, and throw in some of his personal thoughts and analysis.

Don’t worry: your opinions and how you vote are actually anonymous to Walski, so please participate in the poll according to how you actually feel, and be honest with yourself. Honesty is what Walski expects, nothing more, nothing less…