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Kampung Here and Now Beyond bare minimum
Beyond bare minimum PDF Print E-mail
Tuesday, 24 April 2012 20:46

bersihvoicesWe are running a series of letters and contributions from the Rakyat about Bersih 3.0. The first is from a blogger-mother, whose postings can viewed at DONTsayCANNOT




My dearest son,


We all know that when taking care of a healthy child, the bare minimum required is proper food and shelter. And of course, where possible, lots of love and care.


When the child is sick, the bar of bare minimum is raised to include proper medication and tender care. In most cases, it is the usual Panadol, anti-histamine and cough syrup.


But if the child’s sickness is prolonged, the bar is raised again to include a doctor’s attention.


Any thing further than this and the child will need to be taken for diagnostic tests and observation which may even include hospitalisation and other extensive/aggressive medical attention.


Anything less and the child may run the risk of lifelong impaired health, or even death.


In every step of the way, the attending adult caregivers are duty-bound to properly raise the bar of proper and adequate response; failing which he/she is in danger of dereliction of duty as a responsible caregiver. Such an offence is grievous to natural justice.


Similarly, as responsible  citizens of this country, to registerourselves to become voters and then to do the necessary in order tocast our votes on polling day is the bare minimum anyone of us can do.


In order to cast our votes wisely, we raise the bar by informing ourselves through the media (be it mainstream or alternative), attending ceramahs, getting to know the candidates, familiarising ourselves with the respective party or coalition’s manifestos, etc.


But when we know that the electoral process of which we are a part is rigged with untold corruption and massive fraud, to fulfil just the bare minimum as mentioned above is no longer adequate or enough.


For anyone of sound mind to continue thinking that the bare minimum alone is still enough at this point is faulty thinking. Because the chronic illness in the fraudulent system cannot be dealt with just the bare minimum. Lack of political will combined with wilful stranglehold on power can and must be dealt with using “unconventional” methods. Not unlawful, just unconventional, at least in our local context.


A fraudulent electoral process is unjust and immoral because it undermines the very basic tenets of democracy. It is a show of contempt towards the people’s ability to make sound and wise choices for themselves.


In a case of clear electoral crisis such as ours, for us to not raise the bar from bare minimum responsibility is to be fatalistic about the power that is in our hands. It is akin to fighting cancer with medicine meant for flu, which obviously is not going to work. An unusual illness requires unusual intervention and treatment.


In the electoral disease we are faced with, BERSIH is one such intervention. However, the success of such an intervention is dependent upon the cooperation of its stakeholders. In this case, the stakeholders are all the citizens who have a right and the right to decide a government of their own choosing. If we have been keeping to only the bare minimum thus far and are still not seeing the reforms that ought to have taken place all these while, then it is time we raise the bar and step beyond. There can be no other way but to fight the systemic cancer the way it must be done.


Any less and it is a grave disservice to ourselves, our children and our country.


On 28 April 2012, 2pm, Dataran Merdeka, YOU AND I, my dearest son, will STEP BEYOND THE BARE MINIMUM!

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Last Updated on Tuesday, 27 November 2012 23:36

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