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Monday, August 13, 2007

Poll: Is the world flat or round?

Note: Poll at the bottom of post)

Background: I attended the Parliamentary Roundtable to reaffirm that Malaysia is a secular state with Islam as the official religion and not an Islamic state (click BACK button to get back to this page) and was very impressed with the intelligence and speech by Farish A. Noor. He said he studied the countries were former colonies in Africa and Asia like Malaya, Sabah and Sarawak and which obtained independence and went on to become nations. He said he noticed a disturbing pattern, in that many of these countries have a weak democracy. In a weak democracy, you can have a rule by decree where a powerful few rule the country by decree.

I would place Malaysia currently as a weak democracy, and the shocking statement by our Honorable Deputy Prime Minister which clearly runs contrary to the supreme Constitution and the intentions of our founding fathers and what Sabah and Sarawak expected when they were persuaded to join the federation of Malaysia, as almost a rule by decree. I am of course referring to his statement that Malaysia had always been an Islamic state and never a secular state. Then the subsequent order to the mass media not to publicise any discussions on the issue except statements by the Deputy Prime Minister and the Prime Minister when this naturally prompted energetic rebuttals.

This was followed by the statement by the Honorable Prime Minister that Malaysia is neither a secular state or an Islamic state. I was told by Y.B. Lim Kit Siang that he has tried to ask the Prime Minister what kind of state is Malaysia many times, but to date never got a response. A very natural state of affair when authorities get questions or requests which are very difficult to respond to.

Farish A. Noor then offered an interesting parallel "example". He said that in a country, a leader decreed that the world is flat and no one can dispute that. Then another leader also decreed that the world is neither flat nor round. So is the world flat or round? We will like to see what are the opinions of the readers of this blog is by making a poll. Let us have your voice heard by voting in the poll below. Ours is still a democracy, although a weak one:

Is the world flat or round?
Neither flat nor round free polls

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