The Stigmatised and the Defensive
I was talking to a friend on the phone about how he is so defensive about Islam. Let's call this friend. . . hmm. . . Joe.
Me: You know Joe, you are so damn defensive about Islam all the time. Ok so your dad doesn't wanna post a sticker in front of his door just to hide the fact that you guys are Muslim. But he's so Malay looking? Erm. . . Who wldn't guess that he's probably Muslim.
Joe: He doesn't look Malay ok. A lot of people look at him and think he's Indian or something else.
Me: Well, I'm TELLING YOU that as an outsider, your father looks Malay. Both you and your dad! Your sister and mom looks Indian la. . . But anyway why u don't want people to know? Scared they will bomb you? haha. . . (Laughing at the image of a headline in the Straits Times. "Muslim family bombed by terrorists for putting an Islamic verse on the front door!")
Joe: Yeah! (agitated) Yeah ah whatever!!! He doesn't look Malay. And anyway I think that's the right way to live la! Not show anyone that we are Muslims.
Me: (slightly agitated) Okay so you are saying that people don't know now?
Me: You know what your problem is? You are too defensive when it comes to Islam. You have to admit it la. . . You know ah...not everybody is gonna think you are a terrorist or a horrible person because you are Muslim what!? You are telling me that the world hates you because you are Muslim huh?
Joe: Yeah! The world hates us what!
Me: Eh Hello! You know ah. . . I have Chinese friends who are very well read abt Islam and they actually defend Islam. Ok? People actually read and make up their own mind.
Joe: Singaporeans don't read! Look at all the NUS students! They don't know anything about the world. THEY ARE NOT well read?!! (even more agitated)
Me: Yeah ok whatever it is, you are damn defensive especially in your blog. People think you are angry. Even my friends, my colleagues think so!
Joe: Your friends? Who are your friends? Eh I have the right to write anything ok. Who are they??
Me: Eh you don't know my friends what! I tell you also for what. That's not important. The thing here is that you are defensive about Islam when people haven't even done anything. You assume everyone's out to attack your character just cos you are Muslim la.
Joe: Who are your friends? Huh?? I have a right to know who reads my blog! Who are they?!
Me: Eh the whole damn internet has access to your blog la. How are you suppose to know who reads your blog and who doesn't. Doesn't matter right?
Joe: Who? Tell me! Must be your gang la!
Me: See you are assuming again. You don't even know who my friends are and you already accused them of being "MY GANG". What does that imply ah? That everyone in "my gang" hate Islam la?
Joe: Ok BYE
Me: Ah see! Must sulk la. You get all defensive whenever I talk about Islam to you.
Joe: I can write anything I want on my blog ok. It's my right to speak up. I am NOT DEFENSIVE! Ok la ok. . . BYE.
Me: See JOE you are damn defensive la. You always assume that my friends hate Islam la. Jne knows a lot abt Islam and. . . (got cut off)
Joe: Eh When did I say they hate Islam? You never even let me speak ok?!!
Me: Ok fine you didn't. . . but you implied that they hate it.
Joe: (Voice progressively grows into a shrill pitch) Eh fuck you LA!!! FUCK You!! fuckit! You didn't even let me EXPLAIN! FUCK YOU LA FUCK YOU!!!
BANG!!! (slams down the phone)
Me: hahahahahaha. . . haha. . . shit. . . (me texts Joe: Hahah. . . You are crazy la. . . hahaha. . .)