On the 9th of March 2019, a group of people marched the streets of Kuala Lumpur in conjunction with International Women’s Day (IWD). Celebrated to honour women and to bring awareness to the myriad of issues that women face worldwide, a more sordid facet of this celebration reared its ugly head: the hijacking of the IWD celebration by agents of LGBT.
We regret that Charles Santiago, Ambiga Sreenevasan and organisations like SUARAM and KOMAS, by employing the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) and insinuating that transgenders are women too, mistakenly thought that this was a valid basis for their participation.
These claims are vacuous to say the least. It would be pertinent at this juncture to examine the origins of the UDHR, a document commissioned by the United Nations drafted by individuals from different nations, cultures and religions in the wake of the Second World War.
When the UDHR was being drafted, one can imagine the difficulty in raising consensus amongst the culturally and religiously diverse member states. The most important task at hand was the urgency of avoiding another cataclysmic large-scale war from which the world had just emerged. Hence the commissioners drafted the document not based on any one particular religion, but by using a metaphysical or transcendent basis for human rights, which they outlined in the first Article: All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights. The UDHR itself didn’t create rights; it merely recognized that they arise from human dignity, reason, and conscience.
Today we live in a world dominated by the materialistic Monoculture where the metaphysical has been largely discarded, even by those who profess religion. As an extension to this, the pro-LGBT factions have defined their identity by their sexual appetites, totally disregarding the metaphysical prohibitions by every single world religion, and threatening the sanctity of marriage and the family institution in the process. They are inappropriately creating and opening the door to identity politics which enables the screams of ‘discrimination’ at every opportunity.
We should never define people by what they do in their bedroom, surely human beings are much more than that and are accorded rights no matter what sexual desires they have. All human beings possess rights because of our unique human nature as evidenced by reason and conscience. LGBT persons have the same human rights as others, by virtue of their human dignity, not because of their sexual attraction or gender preferences. The UDHR protects every individual from arbitrary arrest, torture, and extrajudicial killing by the State, because of this, not because of their sexual attraction or gender preference. If people are denied these rights then human rights bodies should investigate and strengthen enforcement of their rights because they are human beings with dignity. The LGBT movement’s attempts to focus exclusively on violence against persons who identify as part of that community undermines the impartial nature of the human rights system. Violence against heterosexuals is not any less abhorrent.
In these times of outlandish demands to legitimise LGBT ideology, it is contingent that we return to the baseline—the protection of the core rights as outlined in the Declaration. Even whilst upholding the UDHR, individual nations are still free to champion issues of moral concern in their own legislatures and courts in line with their societal values and norms. More importantly, we have the right to oppose the introduction of terminology such as ‘LGBT’, ‘sexual orientation’ and ‘gender identity’ into the wording of our laws which is obviously a tactic to get a foot in the door to attain precedence and subsequently legitimisation. These pro-LGBT organisations are not fooling anybody.
We must nip this problem in the bud before the floodgates open to more demands as what has happened in the West: complete elimination of binary sex and the legal minefields which this entails, single sex marriage, giving puberty blockers and performing gender transition surgery on children, abhorrent attempts at normalisation such as ‘drag queen story time for kindergartens’, the list continues. Even without this, we are already facing enough problems with the spread of LGBT ideology.
From a medical perspective, patients newly diagnosed with HIV/AIDS are dramatically more common in the homosexual/bisexual population affecting mostly our youth. Data in the newly released Malaysia Progress Report in HIV/AIDS showed alarmingly that in 2018, there was an increase in HIV prevalence amongst transgenders from 5.6% in 2014 to 10.0% in 2017 and in men who have sex with men (MSM) from 8.9% in 2014 to 21.6% in 2017 in Malaysia. The report also mentioned that MSM is expected to become the main driver for the epidemic in the years to come beginning 2018. Thus, we need more than ever to strengthen our preventive measures that includes religious values as more than 70% of the new HIV infections are reported among people age 20 to 39 years old in 2017. We are collapsing as a nation if these calls are not heeded.
This is not to say that compassion cannot be shown to LGBT individuals. Malaysia has an active community of people helping LGBTs practice their religion. Participation is totally voluntary yet LGBT agents decry these efforts because they do not subscribe to their agenda of ‘celebrating’ abnormal sexual desires.
We unreservedly support our leaders from both sides of the political divides, Prime Minister Tun Dr. Mahathir bin Mohamad, Deputy Prime Minister Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail, Minister Dr Mujahid Yusof Rawa and the opposition leaders PAS President Dato’ Seri Tuan Guru Haji Abdul Hadi Awang and UMNO Youth Leader, Datuk Dr DR ASYRAF WAJDI DUSUKIwho have been unequivocal in condemning the normalisation of this ideology which has no place in Malaysian society. This is not a partisan issue and we condemn any suggestions to frame it as such.
The demonstration on March 9th was vulgar, hijacked by demands that are totally out of place in a country that still treasures moral and family values.
Azril Mohd Amin
Lawyer and Chief Executive, Centre for Human Rights Research & Advocacy (CENTHRA) and Chairperson, MACSA
Associate Professor Dr. Rafidah Hanim Mokhtar
President, International Women’s Alliance for Family Institution and Quality Education (WAFIQ) and Co-Chairperson, MACSA