I love Indonesia. It’s a fantastic country and I am so lucky to live here. But there are things that are beginning to really worry me, events that jeopardize the very things that I love:
Pluralism — Somewhere along the way a lot of people forgot that Indonesia is not a Muslim nation. It’s not surprising, when the Religious Minister is crushing religious “sects” on the grounds of blasphemy and warning non-believers (Muslims) to “respect Ramadan”, by burning down brothels and rounding up beggars. Isn’t it obvious that sharia law has no place in a pluralist society? You can’t have it both ways, either your pluralist or your not.
Freedom of expression — Say what you like as long as you don’t piss anyone off. That’s how it works, from Prita and Omni’s crappy service (sue me!), to the government’s threat to ban a movie they haven’t even seen. When did it become okay to throw mothers in jail?
Democracy — Elections does not a democracy make. The DPR has forgotten that its job is to represent Indonesians, not their own interests. The rampant corruption exposed by the KPK to the absence of public consultation on important issues like the Film Law saddens me. This isn’t government. Certainly not one worth voting for.
Compassion — Compassion is the key-stone, the glue that holds it all together. Flashing headlights, pushing in lines, ignoring door-staff, waving-on beggers, torching brothers, hunting down Malaysians and letting Papuans starve to death… where does it end?
Before you abuse me for being narrow-minded or judgmental, please remember what I said at the beginning of this post. I love Indonesia, but I’m worried. I care.
Must have missed this one on my twitter timeline… caught it on my email though :D
Anyways, yeah I totally agree that Indonesia is changing, and in a lot of ways changing for the worse (though some changes are for the better but that’s a different discussion thread).
I definitely don’t have an answer why (though I’ve read a few articles theorizing increased sectarian mentality, media over-exposure etc., but nothing conclusive) nor an answer how (to overcome, etc.), but I personally believe I should live with an open mind and with my open values, no matter what agendas other try to shove down my throat, no matter how often I am informed that I am a stupid idiot, that I think too much about abstract matters, that I don’t compete hard enough etc.
I live true to myself. I see other Indonesians who live so as well. I believe in hope for I see it before my eyes. I make no claim that I am an angel, but I do not push my agendas onto others. Living by example seems futile to many. I choose to try living by example anyway.
I second the corniness :D