26 June 2007

The articles are captured from the original writer, MsMarina (with her permission). SambalBelacan is just compiling articles to make easier to find. Any comments received will remain un-respond because it's not mine.Reach her at her very own blog at http://rantingsbymm.blogspot.com Please.
Wednesday June 20, 2007

Oops YB, stop being boorish



When politicians behave badly, their party-mates are more often than not reluctant to tell them off so as not to give the ‘enemy’ any reason to point out faults.

IN ANY family, when a child has done something wrong to someone else, the parents take it upon themselves to admonish the child and then insist that he or she apologise to the other person.

This was why I, at age six or so, had to say sorry to our gardener for sticking my tongue out at him.

Part of the reason for the admonishment was to teach the child to behave properly towards other people.

The apology, besides being the right thing to do, restores the family’s image, since a badly behaved child reflects badly on his or her parents.

I wish things were quite as simple in the political world. When politicians behave badly, their party-mates are more often than not reluctant to tell them off.

Apparently this is seen as giving the opposition ammunition to destroy the reputation of the party as being united in all things. Everything is seen in terms of not giving the “enemy” any reason to point out faults.

But the trouble is politicians forget that the public is also watching. When politicians behave badly, it is the public that they should worry about, not the opposition.

As an example, when two government MPs displayed crude and boorish behaviour towards a woman MP recently, not only did they take nine whole days to issue an apology of epic insincerity, but also none of their fellow party-mates told them off, including the female ones.

The reason was that they did not want the opposition to “take advantage” of the situation.

But the world is not just political parties and their opponents. There is also the larger public, many of whom vote.

If members of the party they usually vote for behave badly, they will not necessarily immediately vote for another one but they will certainly think much harder about voting for the same one again.

There are other ways to skin a cat, and voting for other people isn’t necessarily the only option.

Like families, individual members of any organisation, including political parties, represent their family wherever they go and whatever they do.

If they behave well, then people think highly of the entire family. If they behave poorly, then the image of the whole family becomes tarnished. Therefore the only way to restore the reputation of the family is to admonish and apologise.

When children do not get admonished for their bad behaviour, they grow up believing that the family sanctions that behaviour, and be-come spoilt brats.

They continue that sort of behaviour and increasingly annoy others until they become unproductive and anti-social elements in society.

Their behaviour reflects on their parents, who seem to have been lax in their disciplining of their children.

Today, we see a continuous stream of bad behaviour from spoilt brats in Parliament. They are almost never told off, and are often quick to claim that they can’t help being emotional sometimes; after all, they are defending the integrity of their party.

Of course, if anyone else does the same, then “emotional” becomes a derogatory term.

The public can only watch with horror at these antics. From fascinated horror, it quickly becomes disgust. We are disgusted that people we vote for should behave in such a manner, and at the cavalier way that the voting public is treated, as if we don’t matter at all.

In insulting one female, for instance on a condition that affects all women, they forget that they in fact insulted all females. Politicians seem to think that getting into Parliament is a licence to become the worst sort of hoodlum, only dressed questionably better than the ones outside.

And we should ask, where are the parents? Why don’t the parents tell off their children? Don’t they feel ashamed and embarrassed at such behaviour?

Are they simply blind to what damage this sort of crassness does to the entire family?

If they can’t see that, then there is really no hope in ever changing the situation.

When people who are supposed to be in authority behave badly, they set an example to the rest of society of what norms of behaviour are now acceptable.

They should not then complain when members of the public start behaving in the same way.

This can only be countered if there is an authority that comes out and says that this type of boorishness is not acceptable anywhere, whether in the privileged halls of Parliament or outside.

But this has been noticeable absent. Nobody, it seems, has the moral courage to call out people for unacceptable behaviour even when you are supposed to stand together in unity. Nobody has the gumption to do just simply the right thing.

Everything is calculated for political expediency. But what if the calculations are wrong?