Civicness, Religion

Edit: Sorry, I forgot to include a link to the original article. It is here.

This really just makes me go: …

Are they insane? Um, excuse me, no matter how you spin, it STILL DOES TOUCH ON OUR CONSTITUTIONAL RIGHTS! Heck, saying:

“The proposal does not touch on constitutional rights of non-Muslims as the action will be taken in a civil court and not Syariah Court,” said Zainul.

Is not going to let you get away with it. At the very core, you are subjecting NON-MUSLIMS to YOUR ISLAMIC Code of conduct. It doesn’t matter whether the cases will take place in the civil court or in the Syariah court: YOU ARE SUBJECTING NON-MUSLIMS TO YOUR ISLAMIC CODE OF CONDUCT.

Even if this had been proposed as a non-Muslim law I would have opposed it. Who gave YOU the right to be the judge of what is essentially: A PERSONAL MATTER? Who gave you the right to impose YOUR code of Morality on ME?

There’s a simple way out of this: Simply banish khalwat from our laws. Close proximity my foot. Khalwat doesn’t even mean close proximity originally: It means retreat, where a believer retreats for 40 days into seclusion, coming out only to pray and to share dreams/inspirations he has received during his meditation.

Now, if they were making noise about zina (premarital sex) I could understand, but under these ignoramuses’ interpretation of khalwat and the proposal to extend it to non-Muslims are just pure hypocrisy. Please la. Focus on the job at hand, can or not? Like what someone mentioned, focus on corruption, not khalwat.

Original article from Malaysiakini under the cut:

The Syariah Lawyers Association of Malaysia (PGSM) today threw its support behind a suggestion to charge non-Muslims for khalwat (close proximity) in the civil court, arguing this would be the moral thing to do.

Using the fifth principle of the Rukunegara – good social behaviour and morality (Kesopanan dan Kesusilaan) – as the basis of its argument, PGSM said it was “double standards” that the proposal has drawn criticism just because it is linked to Islam.

PGSM president Zainul Rijal Abu Bakar, in a statement, noted that the proposal is a resolution at the recent seminar to review syariah laws in Malaysia.

“(It was) suggested that syariah crimes committed by Muslims and non-Muslims ought to be judged and sentenced with equal force,” he said.

“This means that in cases of khalwat involving Muslims and non-Muslims, the non-Muslim party should also be charged and sentenced accordingly.”

He noted that other suggestions were put forward during the seminar, including reform of family law to ensure fairness for women, a garnishing order for husband’s wages for spousal maintenance and raising the sentencing jurisdiction of the Syariah Court.

“(But) the media only picked up on the khalwat proposal by syariah judge Muhd Asri Abdullah,” said Zainul.

“In truth, the question of punishing non-Muslims in Syariah Court does not arise as they would only be charged in civil courts. But isn’t this in line with our country’s fifth national principle (in Rukunegara)?”

Historically, all laws, especially criminal-related ones, have their origin in moral laws which in turn is the result of religion-based rules, he said.

“What would happen if laws governing moral behaviour were to be abolished? What would we then do if someone were to behave indecently in front of us and our children?

“If we say that non-Muslims have the right to khalwat and commit adultery, are we saying that they have the right to break syariah law?

“If they were to commit adultery with a Muslim, do they have the right to adultery until there is a child born out of wedlock and (still) escape legal repercussions?”

‘Be fair’

He also questioned the ‘double standards’ applied just because Islam is involved.

sitting in a mosque“When it has nothing to do with Islam, we are quick to accept it but when the name of Islam is connected, people become restless and oppose it without fair justification towards Islam,” he said.

Action against non-Muslims in this matter would be timely to avoid uneasiness among Muslims and has nothing to do with forcing non-Muslims to adopt Islam as their religion, he said.

“The proposal does not touch on constitutional rights of non-Muslims as the action will be taken in a civil court and not Syariah Court,” said Zainul.

He called on all parties to be fair in expressing their opinions and avoid unjustified attacks on the resolutions.

Last Thursday, Mohd Asri created a stir when he said non-Muslims should be charged in civil court for khalwat.

He was speaking at a two-day seminar organised by Institute of Islamic Understanding (Ikim) and the Syariah Judiciary Department.

Civil society groups and Islamic NGO Sisters in Islam have slammed the proposal.

Ikim director-general Dr Syed Ali Tawfik Al-Attas has distanced himself from the issue, saying it is the judge’s personal opinion and that there is no such formal proposal.