It seems everyone I know is positively gearing up for BERSIH 3.0.
I am too. After what happened last year, and after reading about what my bestie went through – I felt so much of patriotism coursing through my body that I knew I had to attend one this year.
And so, there will be one.
Of course the destination to be at is still Dataran Merdeka – that is where the action is. But like Lerks said, if all of us politics-driven Penangites flock to KL, who will be here in the Esplanade to wear yellow? (Which by the way, though it is a favourite colour of mine, I have NO yellow t-shirt. Then again, even if you don’t wear yellow, try a yellow ribbon, or scarf or bandanna. That counts.)
This will be a big one. If BERSIH 2.0 was anything to go by, it showed that Malaysians have finally found courage to speak up against what’s wrong with the ruling Government of the day.
Like a friend of mine says,”We need to show them that we’re unhappy.”
Just like I read that we shouldn’t be morally self-righteous asses who reprimand those who do not support sit-ins and street rallies, I also want to say this: how else (besides voting) will we be able to show that we’re unhappy, angry, pissed and frustrated?
How else when the mainstream media is full of glowing and flowing praises for the powers-that-be? Their record is unblemished, they’re so good and pious and wonderful – why are we so hard to please?
You must know that I grew up reading Aliran magazine. I was 16 when I proclaimed to my Mum that I wanted to be a lawyer. (Of course that didn’t happen because I realized I’d be too darn emotional as one and I was more inclined towards Mass Comm).
I am also a teacher’s daughter so that makes it quite a strange thing, no? Teachers are civil servants but teachers are also thinking humans. My dad got his supply of Aliran magazines even though he didn’t subscribe to them.
Was I against any political party then? Not really. But I never particularly liked the unctuous MCA people in Banting. I wasn’t even a DAP fan though I had heard of Lim Kit Siang and Karpal Singh.
How does this factor in my life today?
I am in my 30s and I have seen more than enough of rubbish so yes, sometimes it is despair.
It is also the unfairness of it all that makes me want to clobber someone. Why are idiots running this country? And again, my country and my government are two very distinct entities so all that rubbish about not being grateful is pure hogwash.
So I must attend BERSIH 3.0 because perhaps taking such an action and sharing the camaraderie with other people who feel the same way might pacify this awfulness gnawing at my heart. It will become worse (and I, as you know, am generally quite optimistic). There’s nothing like shared misery!
Besides this Saturday’s big do (and if you’re still thinking if you should go or not, just go – go for the sake of your kids, your grandkids), you can also take action – you can buy a radio to help Sarawak.
I’m helping friends who are involved in the “Adopt a Dayak Initiative” under the bigger banner of “From Sarawak to Putrajaya” to raise funds so that they can buy 2200 radios to be distributed into the interior of Sarawak.
Radios are quite low-tech in today’s hi-tech world but combined with the broadcasts from the independent radio station called Radio Free Sarawak, they should be able to inform the rural communities in hard to reach areas about what’s going in the land of the hornbill. The idea is to help the rural Dayak see that they can vote for change but in order to do that, they need to know what’s wrong so they can put it right.
Oh there are a multitude of issues – issues that we who live among Starbucks and Borders do not know such as land grab issue, identity card issue, logging issues and more. You can listen to Radio Free Sarawak too and find out what’s really happening. The good thing is, this radio station broadcasts stuff that tells of the plight of what these Sarawakians go through. We don’t know much here as we’re so far removed from them – it’s as if Borneo is another planet far far away!
As the campaign ends on 30 April (that’s like 4 days away), you can help me tell more people about this “Buy A Radio To Free Sarawak” and get people to buy at least one radio for RM50. You can like the page on Facebook but we realized nothing beats a personal email from you to your friends.
I’ve learnt a whole lot of things during the past few days of this campaign and I’m truly humbled by the outpouring of support and donations coming in from all over the world. I’ve heard of Malaysians overseas who are coming back to join BERSIH because they can feel the hope of solidarity. That’s different from the despair of a future in limbo.
Will you join me in this Saturday’s “yellow fever” sit-in at the Esplanade?
I hope you will.