Moderates must persevere


  • Letters
  • Wednesday, 13 Aug 2014

I REFER to the article “Be brave and beautiful” (Sunday Star, Aug 10).

I congratulate The Star for making the clarion call to moderates to be bold and brave in expressing their views for moderation to triumph over extremism.

With moderates like Marina Mahathir, Wong Chun Wai, Ramon, Navaratnam, Azmi Sharom, Shad Saleem Faruqi, Zainah Anwar and Anas Zubedy spearheading the campaign, our nation will unquestionably continue to enjoy peace and prosperity for many years to come.

Soon, we will celebrate our 57th National Day amid sadness and sorrows over the tragedies of MH17 and MH370.

Let us not forget that it is the distinct harmonious unity and solidarity of all Malaysians of diverse ethnic groups and religions which enable us to move on in our march to become a developed nation by 2020.

We have to take cognisance of the extremists’ strategy who have been very vocal in spewing racial and religious hatred among the rakyat. If left unchecked, the consequences could be disastrous for the nation.

We urge the authorities to put a stop to such unprecedented voices of extremism from whichever racial, religious or cultural groups or political parties.

If the existing laws are incapable of reining in the culprits, the lawmakers should amend or make new laws to nab these racial and religious bigots; we simply can’t afford another May 13 incident.

I am more concerned of the many unemployed youths who are susceptible and may fall prey to these extremists who are without scruples or conscience, and disregard or have contempt for fairness and justice.

Generally, the older ones, especially those aged 40 and above, are more mature, rational and moderate in their actions.

Recently, I was invited to attend an alumni gathering of my former students of Class 1974-76 of SMJB Temerloh.

I was surprised and delighted when they reminisced of the good old days and heaped so much praise on their former teachers.

I was flattered by the many “salam” from them, including the Datuks and Datins, and even a state assemblyman who embraced me like his buddy.

I was really humbled by the openness and humility shown by former students. I would like to thank the alumni members, including Datuk Mohd Musa who is the organiser of the gathering.

There is definitely a silent majority of moderate Malaysians. We all just need to bravely and boldly spread the message of moderation to defeat and drown the voices of extremism in Malaysia.

THOMAS KOK

Ipoh

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Opinion , letters , moderation

   

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