Tag Archives: malaysia

What does it say about us if we need the Sedition Act?


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What does it say about us if we need the Sedition Act?
By Zan Azlee

At the start of the Umno general assembly this year, I told myself that I won’t be writing any opinion pieces based on the speeches, debates and discussions there.

Over the years, I have learned that the rhetoric spewed just does not appeal to me. And it is not just with Umno, but with all political parties, from the ruling coalition to the opposition.

The party’s representatives and leaders can say whatever to the public that seem progressive and promising, but when they start to face their grassroots, they play to their tune.

And this is just what has happened this year at PWTC when the main issue to date has been the Sedition Act and how all the party’s wings have agreed wholeheartedly that it has to stay.
This goes against many statements made by some of these same people that it will be repealed. So what has happened now? Why the U-turn? [Click to read the full article at The Malaysian Insider]

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Could ‘Lelaki Harapan Dunia’ be the Malaysian film that proves that we have matured?


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Could ‘Lelaki Harapan Dunia’ be the Malaysian film that proves that we have matured?
By Zan Azlee

When you watch a film, the way you consume and process it depends on your personal perspective, beliefs and cultural background. Basically, it is something very subjective.

So when I watched film auteur Liew Seng Tat’s latest feature film ‘Lelaki Harapan Dunia’, my opinion of it might not be as objective as others because I have been friends with him for more than a decade.

We started making short films at the same time and we have even worked on films together where we commented on the environment that we live in, our beautiful country of Malaysia.

We are good friends. He was even my ‘pengapit’ when I got married, looking very handsome in a Johor teluk belanga baju Melayu and songket. He played the role well delving into the culture of my ethnicity.

He has been fascinated with Malaysian culture, and told me many stories about Malay culture that even I have never known. I am not his only Malay friend. He has many.

When he followed me back to my father’s hometown in Muar, I brought him to see my late aunty’s house which is considered one of the last traditional Bugis houses in the country. He was very fascinated.

So it was no wonder he decided to make the film ‘Lelaki Harapan Dunia’ which is about a small Malay kampung whose villagers wanted to lift a kampung house as a gift for a newly married couple to build a home.

Seng Tat was influenced by the old and extinct Malay tradition of ‘angkat rumah’ where many years ago, when villagers wanted to move house, they literally moved their house, with the help of the entire kampung of course. [Click to read the full article at English.AstroAwani.Com]

The Fat Bidin Podcast (Ep 26) – Petrol prices… subsidised and confused!


The Fat Bidin Podcast (Ep 26) – Petrol prices… subsidised and confused!

Zan and Aizyl started out so well discussing petrol prices and the effects of subsidies on the nation and it’s people. Then things started to get out of hand when they thought they know things… key word here ‘thought’. They are joined by special guest, TV news producer, Jasmine Abu Bakar.

Listen to more Fat Bidin Podcasts here.

How to make roads safer? Make them less safe!


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How to make roads safer? Make them less safe!
By Zan Azlee

I’ve been to Amsterdam several times and I love the city because it has traditional European charm with cobblestone roads and also modern infrastructure (and they have good coffee shops too!). Walking around the city in the central area near the central station is exciting and fun with many small shops, fresco cafes, public squares and markets everywhere. Another thing that struck me is the excitement isn’t just because of being in a new place or because there are so many things to see. Just walking itself is exciting.

Most of the streets in Amsterdam have no signs, curbs, lines, or anything at all. And with it all being cobblestone, you can’t even distinguish where the street ends and the sidewalk begins. So when you’re walking, you wouldn’t actually know where to walk. Cars would be driving by and bicycles cruising along. The only vehicle that has dedicated space are the barges on the canals.

The feeling that you get when walking in a situation like that is really a feeling of fear. You walk as if there is constant danger of getting hit by a car or a bicycle. You do not feel safe at all. [Click to read the full article at KopitiamEkonomi.Com]

Did I really enjoy going to sekolah kebangsaan?


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Did I really enjoy going to sekolah kebangsaan?
By Zan Azlee

I was twelve years old and attending a public junior high school in New York City. It was a social studies class and the teacher was one Mr Nelson.

My classmates and I entered the classroom and Mr Nelson had a copy of the day’s New York Times for each and everyone of us.

It was the year when President George Bush Sr and the United States declared the first Gulf War against Iraq after Saddam Hussein invaded neighbouring Kuwait.

Mr Nelson gave us twenty minutes to read the story about the war on the front page of the newspaper. He even taught us how to handle and fold a broadsheet!

Once we were done, we were told that we could ask any question we wanted about the story we had just read and about the war. Anything at all.

We started with basic questions like why the US had declared war with Iraq and why Saddam Hussein had sent his troops into Kuwait.

Then we went on to have a lengthy discussion on whether any of us were actually in agreement or disagreement with the decision of the US to declare war with Iraq. [Click to read the full article at The Malaysian Insider]