The recent media attention given to the newly-elect Canadian Prime Minister, Justin Trudeau, has been massive. The chatter that I hear around me is extremely amusing.
I eavesdrop on a conversation by several colleagues sitting around at my workplace, which went something like this after paraphrasing:
“Oh my god! Don’t you think the new Canadian PM is really good looking?”
“Yeah! I know! Yummy”
“He’s really young. Did you know that he was a boxer and he has a tattoo? So cool!”
“When did Canada even have an election?”
So they didn’t even know about the Canadian general election but now they happen to be an expert on the the country’s new prime minister.
I couldn’t help myself and I eventually chimed in (and I’m assuming sounding very judgmental and like an *sshole!) the conversation with a question.
“Do you know what party he is from and what was his manifesto that caused his party to win the government?” I asked.
“Who knows! Who cares! He’s hot!” they laugh.
Now let’s see if we can actually project a local context on tho this issue. Do we have a Malaysian Justin Trudeau of our own? No! I don’t mean our Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak!
But we do have local politicians that have generated the same kind of interest that Trudeau has? Of course we do! Think hard and think carefully.
We have the pretty and appealing Dyana Sofya Mohd Daud of the DAP. She came into the scene when she was nominated in a by-election in Teluk Intan.
Pictures of her started spreading all over social media and she became the Opposition’s sweetheart candidate overnight. She lost by quite a narrow margin.
There was controversy, of course, with many people commenting on the fact that she didn’t really talk much during her campaigning with other DAP leaders doing the talking for her.
Many said she was just a pretty Malay face to appeal to the masses. But if you get to know her well enough, you will find out that she is a lawyer and a columnist as well.
The other side of the political divide has its poster politician too – the ‘tall, dark and handsome’ variety in the form of Youth and Sports Minister, Khairy Jamaluddin.
Everywhere he goes, he gets mobbed by women and men alike who want to take selfies and wefies with him and, basically, swoon all over him.
And just forget about it when it comes to social media! Hundreds of videos and pictures of him exercising and dancing are circulating (he is the propagator of Fit Malaysia anyway!).
Everybody seems to have forgotten that he is quite a smart guy who actually graduated from Oxford. And he speaks in public very well too.
So it looks like politics is moving more towards the rockstar and pop-culture status where coolness and good looks is now the agenda of the day rather than manifestos and social issues.
Oh well, if music, movies, TV and everything else is moving towards the superficial, why not politics too? Who cares about what elected leaders can bring to the table as long as they are hot!