After the BERSIH rally, what’s our next move?
We thrive on hype. The fact is as common and undeniable as our human need to drink water to survive.
Every one of us knows that all-too-familiar adrenaline rush, that manic drive to act upon what we see and hear, that steadfast resolve to propagate something just because it is en vogue. After that, the tide of excitement passes and we’re often left stranded, with no direction or idea of what the next step should be.
Pardon me, but I’ve observed that this is what’s happening after BERSIH. During the weeks leading up to the July 9 rally, everybody (save those living under a rock) was very hyped about it. Yellow yellow yellow! March march march! Sure, the energy was marvellous and it was definitely great that so many more people were initiated to the cause. It was also good to see the turnout in KL on the day itself and the various emotion-filled individual accounts after.
But, now what?
Why were we so hyped up for that one-day event? Up to this second there are stories and tweets circulating about everybody’s firsthand experiences at BERSIH – giving encouragement to one another and exchanging criticism of the FRUs and the government. I’m all for making friends and sharing experiences, but let us not forget why we were so driven and rallied up in the first place.
Let us not forget that the six PSM members are still in detention for nineteen days already and counting, let us not forget that BERSIH’s eight demands have not yet been met, let us not overlook the little things around us that cry out for change. Let us not come to an impasse.
If we all went down to the streets on July 9th, mobilized our friends to do the same, and kept our eyes peeled 24/7 on news regarding BERSIH, surely we would be interested in taking the next step now that the rally is over?
It’s not a one-off thing to be thrilled over and forever just talked about. It doesn’t stop there. Instead, it is something long-term that is meant to have a concrete impact on the welfare of our Malaysian rakyat and future generations. Our spirit and desire for change must carry on. It is said that persistence pays off, and although that does not seem very promising at the moment, we will persist.
We will wear yellow every Saturday, we will press for the six PSM members to be released, we will not fear the authorities or feel intimidated when asking questions, we will exercise our rights to assemble and express freely, we will keep ourselves updated on current goings-ons and stay focused towards what we want to achieve.
Oh yes, we can and we will. We will forge on because we care enough.
People power FTW!