Side Views

Yes, you must behave, Bung — Erna Mahyuni

Nov 22 — You have to admire the Kinabatangan MP on some level. No other MP gladly puts his foot in his mouth with so much relish, you begin to wonder if his foot is delicious.

Datuk Bung Mokhtar Radin in person is an affable man, who prides himself on his “every man” demeanour, and talks more like your drunk uncle than a lawmaker.

The problem is, Bung, is that you’re not just an embarrassing family member but an elected Member of Parliament.

There are expectations that come with the role, unfortunately.

One of them is the realisation that you can’t just say what you want, when you want.

Being an elected representative means there are standards of behaviour we expect you to meet.

At the very least, you shouldn’t swear, in public, especially at one of the people you are hoping votes for you in the next election.

Must I remind you GE13 is just around the corner?

We’re all allowed a slip of the tongue once in a while. We’re all human, after all.

The problem with you, Bung, is that you don’t so much “slip”, as much as “stab” with your tongue.

What is unacceptable is that your Barisan Nasional leaders let you get away with your outrageous statements.

That bocor statement you made all that time ago? It was chauvinistic, rude and unacceptable. You didn’t just slur an opposition MP but all women. You have never apologised for that, have you? Don’t get me started on your smart remarks about women drivers.

But your greatest act of chauvinism, Bung, was ignoring the law of the land by refusing to ask permission from your first wife to marry your second. I can understand you were impatient, as your new wife is such a pretty young thing.

Did you forget you’re an elected official? Aren’t elected officials supposed to, you know, follow the rules?

Instead, you hopped off to Thailand for a quickie wedding and, unfortunately, got caught.

Being an MP doesn’t put you above the law.

If anything, you’re supposed to obey and uphold it. 

So it’s a little rich, your defending your right to use the F-word to ‘put someone in his/her place’.

You gave up that right when you took your oath. 

As a representative of the people, you are supposed to be someone we look up to. You are supposed to set an example.

You are supposed to maintain a code of conduct that we expect you to follow, because if you can’t follow it, then why should we?

Some people think that calling you out for it in public is ‘sensationalising a non-issue’.

I beg to differ.

In other countries, MPs using foul words in public is frowned upon as well.

People are going to call you names and insult you.

Get used to it. As an MP, you must take the higher ground and ignore those who call you names.

As someone who gets plenty of insults on Twitter and in my column’s comments, I understand the need to vent.

But Twitter isn’t the place for it, Bung, and you know that.

All we’re asking from you is that you show a little class and save the F-word for occasions when half of Malaysia can’t hear you.

So behave, Bung.

Or we’ll have no qualms whatsoever not to vote for you or anyone you champion.

* This is the personal opinion of the writer or publication and does not necessarily represent the views of The Malaysian Insider.

 

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