Sunday February 12, 2012
Those opposing Valentine’s Day should just grow up
The Sunday Star Says
IF further proof is needed that the silly season in Malaysian politics is in full swing, PAS Youth seems only too happy to oblige.
Just as romantic couples everywhere look forward to celebrating their relationship, the Islamist party’s Youth wing has decided to spoil the mood. They want to ban what they perceive to be, or could be, undue media emphasis on Valentine’s Day.
What exactly constitutes “undue”? And what is “emphasis” anyway, as distinct from due publicity about said event?
In the real world, these quantities and qualities need to be defined and made known before action can be taken against them as PAS Youth wants. Surely, there must be more important issues in the country to occupy a serious political movement?
But in whatever way they wish to express their puerile anxieties, it still means censorship. Is this then to be the future of a brave new Malaysia?
We can only hazard some guesses about what had motivated such unsolicited puritanism and paranoia. Wild rumours persist on the Net about how Valentine’s Day originated from ancient fertility rites predating Rome.
Cynical rejectionists then automatically conclude that it must mean a day of depraved debauchery, to which hapless souls of weak will and simple minds of uncertain faith must therefore fall prey.
Notwithstanding any particular account of its origins, Valentine’s Day has long been celebrated as a romantic day for loving couples. How can any reasonably adjusted person feel aggrieved about that?
Some may prefer to look beyond the day because they feel couples should celebrate their relationship on more than just one day in the year. Would PAS Youth then take this to mean “licentiousness” and would thus be a daily affair?
Sadly, there are still people in this country with such primitive instincts. Worse still, they are seriously vying for power to run the country.
They cannot appreciate the irony that, in pushing to ban “undue” media publicity about Valentine’s Day, they are actually generating more media publicity about it. The same should go for their chances at the coming general election – all the way down.
Perhaps these hotheads should take a leaf from PAS spiritual leader Datuk Nik Abdul Aziz Nik Mat’s declaration of Valentine’s Day as “couple’s day”. After all, that is what the occasion is about.