Before I was a blogger, I was a blog reader. And one of the very first blogs I used to frequent was sixthseal.com.
It wasn’t the drug posts that attracted me to the site – I’ve never done drugs, nor do I ever intend to. But I wasn’t enough of a saint to go round judging other people for their vices.
It was the style of writing. I’d previously believed that addicts and drug users were, to put it bluntly, a couple of sandwiches short of a picnic. But at sixthseal.com, it was obvious that the writer was quite an intelligent young man, with clear, coherent thoughts and well-drafted arguments.
His various food review posts are one of the highlights in a local blogosphere that’s running out of fresh and original ideas.
Anybody following the blog in recent times would know that he’s also someone who accepts his weaknesses and attempts to deal with them the best way he can. He has tried several attempts to put some of his worse vices behind him, and he has reduced drastically his posts regarding drugs.
Which is why I find it weird, that after all this time, a local tabloid has decided to highlight his blog on the front page under the headline ‘Laman Web Dajal‘ (kinda means ‘evil website’).
A few excerpts:
Pengasas laman web dajal itu mendakwa dirinya rakyat tempatan dan graduan komputer berusia 24 tahun yang kini bekerja sesebagai jurutera.
(The founder of the website claims to be a local citizen and a computer graduate, aged 24 and currently working as an engineer.)
Dia menganggap dadah sebagai ‘tuhan’ dan cuba menyebarkan pengetahuan luasnya mengenai semua jenis dadah kepada orang ramai.
(He thinks of drugs as ‘god’ and tried to spread his vast knowledge regarding all types of drugs to the public.)
Lebih menakutkan, dia turut memberikan tunjuk ajar kepada pengunjung laman web berhubung lokasi di ibu kota yang mudah dikunjungi untuk mendapatkan dadah serta harga yang sering ditawarkan.
(More frighteningly, he also provides tips for his website visitors regarding locations in the city which are easily accessible to acquire drugs as well as the prices that are commonly offered.)
Sehingga kini laman web itu didapati menerima tindakan balas positif daripada pelayar internet melalui komen ‘membina’ yang disiarkan.
(To date, the website receives positive feedback from web surfers via the ‘encouraging’ comments displayed.)
And not just one single article, mind you.
Two related articles appear in the tabloid alongside the above:
Kegiatan boleh pengaruh remaja (Activity could influence teenagers).
Orang ramai yang tahu kewujudan laman web berkaitan pengenalan dan kaedah menghisap dadah serta pil khayal diminta tampil membuat laporan polis bagi menghentikan penyebaran maklumat tidak sihat itu.
(Members of the public who know the existence of websites regarding the identification and methods of taking drugs and hallucinogenic pills are asked to come forward to make police reports to stop the spreading of such unhealthy information.)
Sementara itu, Ketua Bahagian Komunikasi Korporat Suruhanjaya Komunikasi dan Multimedia Malaysia (SKMM), Adelina Iskandar, berkata disebabkan paparan dalam laman web itu jelas membabitkan isu dadah, ia terletak di bawah kuasa polis.
(Meanwhile, the head of the Corporate Communications Department of the Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission (MCMC), Adelina Iskandar, said that because the contents of the website clearly involve drugs, it therefore comes under police jurisdiction.)
“SKMM tidak boleh terburu-buru menutup laman web itu, kecuali ada bukti kukuh. Hanya polis ada kuasa dan SKMM bila-bila masa bersedia memberi kerjasama,” katanya.
“MCMC cannot close down the website hastily, unless there’s solid evidence. Only the police have the power and MCMC is ready to co-operate at anytime,” she said.
Cabar pihak berkuasa (Challenging the authorities).
Kewujudan laman web berkaitan dadah yang disertakan cara mengguna dan menyembunyikannya daripada dikesan pihak berkuasa disifatkan sebagai satu ancaman kepada masyarakat.
(The existence of a website about drugs including methods of using them and hiding them from being detected by the authorities is considered to be a threat to society.)
Naib Pengerusi Yayasan Pencegahan Jenayah Malaysia, Tan Sri Lee Lam Thye, berkata tindakan mewujudkan laman web terbabit seolah-olah cuba memperlekehkan usaha kerajaan dan pada masa sama mencabar undang-undang.
(Deputy Chairman of the Malaysian Crime Prevention Foundation, Tan Sri Lee Lam Thye, said that the act of creating the website is like trying to snub (?) the efforts of the government and at the same time challenging the law.)
“Kita tidak tahu tujuan pengasas laman web itu, tetapi berdasarkan apa yang cuba disampaikannya, dia ada niat jahat.
(“We do not know the original purpose of the website founder, but based on what he has presented, he has bad intentions.)
“Dengan adanya laman itu, golongan yang berminat dengan dadah akan terus menggunakan dadah, manakala yang tidak pernah mencuba akan mencubanya akibat terpengaruh,” katanya.
(“With the existence of that site, people interested in drugs will immediately use drugs, while those who’ve never tried it will try it as a result of being influenced,” he said.)
Seriously, I do not condone drug use. I personally despise drugs of all kinds, and I do support capital punishment for dealers.
But these articles are way over the top – coming especially at a time when more pressing national issues need to be faced by the powers-that-be. Is this a way for the local media to distract the public’s attention?