JANUARY 24 — Defining liberal fascists
Let’s be clear. Being leftist does not inoculate you from behaving like a fascist; just as authoritarianism is not the exclusive vice of the right wing. The Nazis, after all, were socialists and lest we forget, Joseph “Dictator” Stalin and Chairman Mao Zedong were communists, while Francisco “Fascist” Franco in Spain was, in fact, a left wing socialist.
The most archetypal examples of totalitarianism in the 20th Century were incarnated by left wing ideologues and simply, using liberal jargon with the aim to appeal to compassion and tolerance in order for you to advance a deeply authoritarian agenda does not make that agenda less offensive.
What makes a movement fascist is the degree, to which it does not accept dissent, its refusal to tolerate other opinions and the outright arrogance in seeking to advance its agenda through force, demonization and denigration of anyone who disagrees with it. And this is quite noticeable among the so-called “progressives;” or what should be more accurately described as the “regressive left.”
The left does not deal magnanimously with anyone who challenges its narratives; in reality, the supporters can be quite malicious.
In Malaysia, human rights NGO, the Centre for Human Rights Research and Advocacy or Centhra, along with a broader coalition of NGOs under the name Macsa (the Malaysian Alliance of Civil Society Organisations in the UPR Process), recently published a statement against the efforts to advance political agenda of the LGBT community in the country against the prevailing sentiments and religious concerns of the general public.
Centhra and Macsa were instantly excoriated online by gay-rights activists and left-wingers as advocates of “selective rights.” Worse off, Centhra and Macsa were brandished as bigots and as religious extremists. Their credentials as human rights defenders were rejected with the allegations that they purportedly did not align with the Universal Declaration of Human Rights 1948 (UDHR) in their opposition to, for instance, same-sex marriage.
LGBT defenders’ political game
To begin with, it should be acknowledged that it is a political ideology to regard homosexuality as an identity akin to race or ethnicity. This is neither an objective nor a scientific fact and for all intents and purposes, it remains merely an opinion.
Another opinion, far closer to objective evidence, is that homosexuality is a chosen behaviour. Therefore, the moment we begin to talk about the “rights” of the LGBT community, we are participating in an ideological discussion.
Declaring that LGBT individuals deserve special rights and protections is based on the concept that homosexuality is an identity, and this should not be accepted as an un-debatable fact. A good deal of the progress in the LGBT agenda has derived from their making this concept unquestionable; even though the actual science on the matter is, at best, inconclusive.
It is an entirely valid viewpoint if you do not subscribe to the idea that there should be special rights afforded to LGBT individuals. This viewpoint does not in any way equate to believing that the general rights afforded to all people do not apply to them.
If you choose to believe that homosexuality is a chosen behaviour, which, in the absence of conclusive scientific evidence to the contrary, is the most reasonable assumption to make; then, like everyone else, LGBT individuals are, and should be, subject to laws that regulate public behaviour.
Furthermore, like everyone else, their choices once made, will tend to limit (or at the very least impact) their subsequent available options.
Take for example the right to contract a marriage. The right to marry is upheld by the UDHR, but it is a right upheld for heterosexual couples exclusively, wherein article 16(1) thereof uses the phrase “men and women of full age.”
There is nothing whatsoever that contradicts the UDHR if one does not believe in the right of same-sex couples to marry. Nor is there anything inaccurate about describing the push for gay-rights and same-sex marriage as essentially a political agenda, rather than a human rights concern.
If one chooses to exclusively partner with members of one’s own sex, one has implicitly chosen to not marry and to not procreate. It is made with a conscious decision to choose. These are at least two of the obvious ramifications of that choice, and avoiding the consequences of one’s decisions is not a human right.
One cannot invoke their right to food, for example, when they have chosen to spend their income on other things.
Pushing political agenda in the name of human rights
The regressive left are manipulators of the UDHR, not defenders of it. They are not human rights campaigners; they are political extortionists who couch their demands in the language of human rights.
The preamble of the UDHR states that “a common understanding of these rights and freedoms is of the greatest importance for the full realisation of this pledge,” yet the leftists want to reinterpret the terms of the contract which the UDHR represents after it has been signed; and by this new interpretation, they intend to include things to which the signatories have not agreed; and they call this “defending” the UDHR!
The UDHR provides no special recognition of homosexuality as an identity deserving specific rights or protections; it only states that the general rights outlined in the declaration cannot be denied to any individual on the basis of his or her sex.
That is what the signatories have agreed to; nothing more and nothing less of this. And the term “sex” used herein refers to the biological anatomy of an individual, as opposed to the term “gender” which may refer to the social role based on the sex of the person.
Pushing the political agenda of recognisng homosexuality as an identity rather than a chosen behaviour, has no basis in the UDHR, and opposing that agenda is in no way conflicting with the rights enshrined in it. Every nation is free to legislate behaviour according to their own standards of morality and justice and logic.
The UDHR has always respected each member state’s rights to establish its own human rights laws within the ambit of its national narratives.
One must ask, why are the leftists in Malaysia holding other fellow citizens in such contempt that they believe they are incapable of determining for themselves what is best for our society? Why do they presume, when the people of Malaysia disapprove of homosexuality, and resist the same-sex political project, that they are all religious extremists and ignorant bigots; all the while it is the leftists who are seeking to force average Malaysians to follow their unpopular political opinions?
In short, why are they so fundamentally undemocratic in their pursuit of their “human rights” agenda?
* Azril Mohd Amin is a lawyer and chief executive of Centhra and chairperson of Macsa. Associate Professor Dr Rafidah Hanim Mokhtar is president of International Women & Alliance for Family Institution and Quality Education (Wafiq) and co-chairperson of Macsa.
** This is the personal opinion of the writer or publication and does not necessarily represent the views of Malay Mail Online.