HRW Should First Understand Malaysia’s Background and Culture

Human Rights Watch (HRW) should attempt to understand Malaysia’s history and background before releasing any statement calling for law amendments in the country, specifically regarding  same-sex sexual relations. This is in response to Phil Robertson, deputy Asia director at Human Rights Watch who calls Malaysia to revoke the ban on homosexuality in the country.
Malaysia, being a country with Islam as its religion and majority population are Muslims denounces acts of homosexuality not only because it is a crime according to the law, but most importantly it is a crime against the national religion, culture and values of this nation. This is something HRW must respect as it is the right of the nation to practice its belief and implement its laws.
Human rights are not about total freedom of acts or to live freely. There must always be rules to abide by, ethics to live by, principles to uphold; all this to ensure stability, credibility, integrity of the highest levels being practiced among society. Sodomy is a clear act against nature and has been declared as a major sin throughout the Islamic teachings and is totally alien to the Malay and eastern culture.
Islam, as we believe to be a universal and progressive religion, provides methods of therapy and motivation to battle against various mental disorders, including homosexuality. Thus, legitimizing sinful acts, like homosexuality, is no solution in our social belief. On the other hand, we will continue to explore and study our religion and culture to rehab any of our country’s sons or daughters who are tested with such abnormal urges. We also believe that even non-Muslims could benefit from Islamic psychotherapy in order to hamper such social illness.
Thus, HRW should respect Malaysia’s legal stand and not play the role as agents to enforce a certain dogma onto other nations in the name of liberalism and their self-interpreted human rights. Rather, HRW should learn to understand various cultures, traditional and spiritual philosophies, to define true virtues and decency. Too much liberalism in thought and practice can portray a threat to moral and cultural values.
Civilization advances as man practices decent behaviour, leaving behind ignominious and repulsive practices. Thus, according to our country’s official religion beliefs, any sanction for such foul acts like homosexuality will only return us to the dark ages of ignorance, morally.

Aizuddin Khalid
Vice President
Persatuan Belia Islam Nasional (PEMBINA)

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