Salam. for those who are following Shafiq Azid's blog of randomness, you'll notice that the title is taken from his recurring series of posts. *Thanks for giving me the idea.
Well, as I was flipping through some of my old assignments, I noticed that I have written something about two months ago which I disagree now (in terms of music). *Go down to see what I think now.
Here's what I had written.
PS: this is the moment when you should start the endless yawning.
The issue of the influence of western media over the morality of youths has often been an unending debate. It has often been unwarrantedly alleged by various indoctrinated bodies that western media is the main cause of moral decline among youths in our country. While it is not deniable that it may be one of the factors for moral declination among local youths, it is quite unlikely that it is the main factor for it. Western media does have its roots in tainting the morality of Malaysian youths but I strongly disagree that it is the main factor for the perpetually-perturbing ethical damage. To make it clear, my stance on the word morality is based on the definition from Wikipedia.org which is “a system of conduct and ethics that is virtuous” (par.1 ). Hence, in order to make the definition unbiased and fair, the term ‘morality’ will not be viewed from racial, national or religious viewpoints. The basis of my rejection towards this claim is grounded on three interrelated raison d'être – the dominance of local media, the anti-Americanism movement and the evidential deficiency of the relationship between the media and morality declination.
When discussing about the first reason for my disagreement – the dominance of our local media, we should not constrict our definition towards the word ‘media’ to only songs and TV programmes. The media denotes a broader meaning than what is usually perceived; it encompasses videos, audios, articles and even photos that generate information to a group of consumers (Wikipedia.org, par. 3). Hence, what is meant by the dominance of our local media? Taken from atimes.com, Ioannis Gatsiounis commented from his observation that “among Malaysians, for instance, that when given a choice - say on a flight or at multinational coffee houses - between international newspapers such as the International Herald Tribune and Financial Times and local government-controlled propaganda, they almost invariably choose the latter” (par. 12). Hence, from his evidential observation, it is very hard to deny the fact that local news press has a bigger influence than the western news press – regardless of how prejudiced and government-oriented it is.
Apart from that, still regarding the first reason for my disagreement, the local youths or even Malaysians in general are only exposed to local radio stations nowadays except for Chinese Radio International (CRI), Radio Thailand World Service (RTWS) and Voice of Vietnam (VOV) which are not even Western-oriented radio stations (Wikipedia.org, par.3). The only ever-existed western-oriented radio station was BBC World Service which was discontinued almost 20 years ago on 31st March 1991 (Wikipedia.org, par.6). Hence, the claim that western media is the main reason for the moral decline of Malaysian youths is definitely unjustifiable. If English-based radio stations like hitz.fm or fly.fm is accused of being “messengers of Western-indoctrination”, it is again, unjustifiable since these English-based radio stations are in fact local radio stations and while they do air Western songs, they are still under governmental observation; hence, if anyone is to blame for letting them air the so-called fallaciously seditious ideas, it should be those who permits them to air in the first place.
Regarding the second reason for my disagreement which is the anti-Americanism movement, we should first examine the denotative definition for the term anti-Americanism. According to Wikipedia.org, the term ‘anti-Americanism’ is referred to as “broad opposition or hostility to the people, policies, or government of the United States.” Obviously, from the definition, the stench of over-generalization can be sensed; but that is a different story. It is what the conclusion that is derived from the definition that should be highlighted – most Malaysians; particularly the Muslim community (which constitutes the most percentage in the population of Malaysia) is against anything that is related to America at one time – a powerful conveyer of Western-based media. Of course, this irrationally generalized hatred could not die overnight and hence, it prolonged to the extent that they reject any news coming from American news companies- regardless of whether the message is truthful or distorted. The problem with Malaysians is that “we are far too easily swayed by emotions, without rationally considering the issue at hand” (infernalramblings.com, par.1). However, this fact proves that while Malaysian youths’ moral declination may have rooted from Western actions, it is local media that drives the youths to develop hatred, violence and other negative and unethical behaviours which can lead to more serious problems like discrimination towards other religions.
Moving on to the next and last reason for my rejection which is the evidential deficiency of the relationship between the media and morality declination, it is found out in various studies that the media, while it is a powerful tool to influence people to think and act, it can hardly influence people to do something consciously and obviously wrong. For example, even though people may find violence in movies intriguing, there are very few cases in which they are influenced by it (even the few cases are found out to be rooted from psychological problems, not bad media influence) but people are mostly uninfluenced to act violently as it is shown in the movies or TV programmes. We have never seen a movie about killing innocent lives and suddenly we ourselves feel the urge to kill too right? Some may argue that “if televised imagery doesn't affect human behavior, then the TV networks should refund billions of advertising dollars to TV sponsors” (leaderu.com, par. 12); however, they should take note that while the media can influence people, again, it cannot influence something which is consciously and obviously wrong – and bad morality is definitely something which is obviously wrong (if it is conceived from the above given definition).
In short, the claim that western media is the main cause of moral decline among youths in our country is definitely unwarranted and prejudiced; based on three interrelated raison d'être – the dominance of local media, the anti-Americanism movement and the evidential deficiency of the relationship between the media and morality declination.
When I wrote this then, I wasn't really listening to the "mainstream" music industry of the western world. Back then, I was mostly listening to Epica, Chthonic, Draconian, etc. which FOR ME conveys GREAT messages. Epica for example urges us to search for the meaning of our existence. Chthonic urges us to free ourselves from governments which practice tyranny (it's about China's oppression towards Taiwan) HOWEVER, when I listen to Pink and Lady Gaga for example, I noticed how bad the messages in the lyrics convey. Eventhough the music is not as heavy as metal songs (which makes them unacceptable by public), the lyrics are far worse. Pink's Fucking Perfect for example attempts to make everyone feels that they are perfect while in fact, no one's perfect - it's self deception. In Islam, Muslims believe that only Allah is perfect and all other beings are imperfect. In other religions as well, Hindhuism for example, also conveys the message that only God is perfect in the aspect of Saguna Brahman. This is just ONE example, let me let you guys think of the rest (not that I'm saying ALL western songs are bad, NO). It's not that we shouldn't listen to the western music, but be careful not to get too influenced by the subliminal messages. I still listen to Pink regardless of what I've said; I mean, c'mon, the song's catchy right? Haha.
Peace no war. War2 Crew =,= Wslm.