Friday, May 01, 2009

The Penanti Proclamation

THE PENANTI PROCLAMATION

(To be read aloud by any Malaysian in any gathering)

Five scores and zero years ago, our forefathers and foremothers set forth the plan for a republic that never materialized. We argued for a republic of virtue but instead were given a State of Denial. We worked hard to established a kingdom of peace and tolerance but saw instead the evolution of a dictatorship of plutocracy and totalitarianism.

Five scores and zero years ago, we though we had our Independence – given on a silver platter by a dying Imperial Power. But what we got was a state that evolved out of the romance of a “ketuanan Melayu”.

But let us not despair for even religion has asked us to revolt against the corrupt few; and philosophy has always given us the wisdom to tear apart totalitarianism,

I stand here by His Grace, with humility, thanking you Malaysians who have come to celebrate and to give us the strength, the resolve, and the will to continue to march towards victory.

This victory is already ours. We cannot underestimate our struggle – the struggle of Malaysians of regardless of race, class, gender, creed, religious background, and national origin. This victory will be a gift for our children. This will be the best gift we can leave the next generation with in a country in which "justice" is put in its proper place. This is the concept of Adil and is what we base out struggle on. This is the concept of bersih, cekap, amanah in the truest sense of the word. We are winning.

We live in an imperfect world. We live in maya, in the shadow of Plato's cave. We constantly need to make changes to our institutions, so that democracy will have its breathing space, will evolve, and will flourish in accordance to the laws of Nature. As the French philosopher Jean Jacques Rousseau once said "Everything in good in the hands of the Author of things, everything degenerates in the Hands of Man…"

We have allowed totalitarianism, corruption, repression, and hedonism to take root in our democratic institutions.

In an imperfect world such as Malaysia, in which imperfection has gotten worse and making us slaves to the policies created out of our prejudices and arrogance, out of our greed and lust for power, and out of our ill-conceived idea of human liberation and economic development - this imperfect world needed more than just incremental changes and compromise.

It needed radical changes and no-compromises. We have shown that we through Fate conspiring, through the Will of God, we made that change, sudden yet peaceful and civil, on March 8 2008. It is our Velvet revolution, inspired by our own sense of non-violence, aided by technologies of cybernetics.

The "revolution" - our own Malaysian styled-revolution - that ought to now be studied alongside the nature and structure of revolutions worldwide is not without its causes.

Voices of change

Those hard long years of battling injustices, the sacrifices of those imprisoned without trial, of those humiliated beyond recognition stripped off their dignity, those brutally beaten beyond mercy, those hunted down on the streets of our major cities, those silenced and stupefied in our universities, those sprayed with chemicals, and the voice of the little girl – a child of the Hindraf revolution who brought roses to ask for pity for his father's release - all these violent images of oppression we do not deserve have taught us to be stronger.

We shall overcome
We shall overcome.
We shall overcome the tyranny of an arrogant, ineffective, incompetent, corrupt and lazy government that
does not have any more respect for the rule of law
does not have any shame in showing its greed and lust
does not have any mercy in using brutal force to silent the voices of change
does not have much respect for the principles of human rights
does not have much intelligence when it comes to parliamentary debates
does not have a clue of what good governance means
does not have any regard for the plight of the poor and their livelihood
does not have any respect for the intelligence of the faculty and students in our universities
does not have any shame in overstaying their welcome
does not have any interest in controlling crime
does not have any will to fight corruption
and does not have leaders that are wide awake,
and does not have any idea that spoiled brats and greedy ones are running the country and finally destroying not only the party but also the nation.

That's the price of arrogance. That's the price of corruption. That' s the price of losing touch with reality and a government losing its mind as well. That is what it is paying for – big time!

It has been our remarkable years of living dangerously, swept by the tsunami of a yellow wave, under the moonlight of a blood red sky. It has been remarkable for us and the world to witness battles being fought by the rakyat against the machinery of oppression— a corrupted machine run by corrupted minds of lesser morals.

By God's grace we shall win this war against the unjust. We shall win, by the will of the people.

We shall put justice in its proper place.

Hold on fast to your dreams

A few days before the Malaysian tsunami that swept away the powerful machinery of the ruling regime, sweeping it to the backyard of our national history, we were battling with this feeling that the regime would still be holding power and will continue to use it to oppress, intimidate, and to rob the
rakyat – for another fifty years.

The African-American poet of hope, Langston Hughes once said:

"Hold on fast to your dreams. For when dreams die, life is but a broken-wing"

W.S. Rendra the great poet of the Nusantara once said the "world within.. the world outside must unite" in order for meaningful change to happen; in order for leaders to be true to his or her conscience and to answer to God.

We are at an exciting historical juncture. No longer are we being objects of history, but we have become makers of history. Time awaits no man or woman. History marches on; history crafted by those oppressed by their own people intoxicated with power.



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