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Friday, June 12, 2015

When In Rome...

For Malay language version please visit this link.

No, this is not about my travel to Rome. In fact, I have never even been to Rome though I have many times over defeated and annihilated the Roman Legions leading the Carthaginian armies and even sacked and razed the city to the ground with my Hunnic hordes in few Total War games. Actually this post is about the phrase that many of us have read or heard which is "When in Rome, do as the Romans do” or “When in Rome, act as Romans”.  It is first attested in medieval Latin “Si Fueris Rōmae, Rōmānō vīvitō Mōre; Si Fueris Alibī, Vīvitō Sicut Ibi” (if you should be in Rome, live in the Roman manner; if you should be elsewhere, live as they do there); attributed to St Ambrose.

There is even a Malay proverb which reads “Masuk kandang kambing mengembek, masuk kandang kerbau menguak” which practically advice us very much the same as the Latin quote above. While there are probably various meanings or places that we can use the proverb above, I’m going to talk specifically about the dress codes.

Photo credit: Google Images
We surely have heard regarding the sarong incident at one of the government office few days ago and like many other things that happened in this country, for me it’s a small issue blown out of proportion every time any politician opened their mouth. From a practically an issue regarding conforming to the dress code, it has become a political and even a religious issue, with accusations like the government is going to Talibanize the country, personal definition of what decent and what’s not decent to wear  to the minorities are losing their rights and so on. You can almost pick up various types of these kinds of answers on many blogs, news sites, forums and Facebook pages relating these incidents.

Photo credit: Suzanne G L Tan Facebook Page
There are some that gives their opinion of what is decent and what is not like saying that since they are confirming to their own office dress codes, then they must be confirming to other places dress codes. Look, just because you can wear something to some place, it does not mean that you can wear the same thing at every place. The dress codes are there for a reason and they varied from places to places. Not just government and public offices but there are also dress codes even for privately invited parties which one must follow if one wants to participate.

Photo credit: Google Images
I find it strange that the particular government office was forced to issue an apology because someone who came to their place did not conform to the office rules. I did not read about the apologies and wondering are they apologizing because they did not turn the woman away and come back when she’s dressed according to the rules or because rather than turning the woman away , they provided a solution where that saves everyone’s time?

Yes, there are times that some rules may no longer be relevant but as long at the rules is being in practice then should not we follow them? Yes, rules are made to be broken, but then we’re not English. Again the little non-issue has become a national and religious issue especially when every politician racing to show their faces on the newspaper get saying all sort of things.

Photo credit: FreeMalaysiaToday
However, coming from any other people I can simply say that these are political stunts but from this particular politician however there seems to be some sort of agenda which is not solely politics. I would rather not speculate much but this particular politician never seems to miss commenting on almost any issues that may (or may not) related to Islam. Whether that’s a coincidence or whether that’s what the type of person she is or even whether that’s what her constituents expected her to say, from the issues like azan and Octoberfest, my impression is that she’s that she’s trying to make Muslims feels ashamed for being what they are. 

This can even be seen from her personal attack on one of the Multiracial Reverted Muslims group founder related to the article posted on FreeMalaysiaToday where she in the first place tried to give the impression that the ruling is related to Islam and will probably infringe on her moral and maybe her own religious sensitivity. Luckily I’m not staying under her constituency so I will not bother much as long as her intentions are political.

Photo credit: MRM Facebook Page
I guess I should stop talking about this anymore since cheap politics are not within my listed interest and I would rather go back to read about Rome. Who knows, maybe someday I can afford to take my wife for a visit to the Roma Aeterna the Eternal City, the Caput Mundi, the Capital of the World, sitting in front of the Flavian Amphitheatre sipping Lavazza’s Crema e Gusto!

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Disclaimer : All images are for illustration purposes only and this blog author does not claim any copyright to the published images and he only copied the images already publicly available on the internet (unless stated). The blog author also wishes to state that his opinion posted on this blog are his alone and not paid by any political parties.

1 comment:

  1. It appears you have conveniently chose to ignore the meaning of why the phrase "rules are made to be broken" by giving yourself an excuse by saying, "we're not English".

    How does not being a specific denomination of the human race warrants any forms of ignorance?

    The rules here are made to be broken because they were made in the context that dress code should matter, when it is actually TRIVIAL. The rules were made by only looking at the problem consequentially, by stating how certain dress codes could be inappropriate, when deontologically speaking, there are more gray areas than mere black and white regulations.

    Saying, "we're not English" is just an excuse for rationality, unless you like being insane, that is.