What nude? What scandal? What loose morals? It's time people learn the nuances of the English language and what these words could imply. Stop the propaganda.
If somebody can be accused of being immoral by being nude in his/her own home then we can't have anybody taking a bath naked in their own house in
Selangor state executive councillor and assemblywoman Elizabeth Wong’s predicament is not much different. In this case, the pictures were believed to be taken by a former boyfriend, believed to be a Malay guy named Hilmi, without her consent.
Whatever the motive of the person who released the pictures to the media, he has achieved his objective. Wong has been embarrassed in public and has offered to step down from her position both as executive councilor and assemblywoman.
All Elizabeth Wong did was sink into a nap, glasses still attached, and a moment of voyeurism that was thrillingly executed then while she slumbered - catapulted her into titillating bedlam, rocking her party and spicing up, yet again, Malaysia’s throbbing political narrative.
Wong was snapped sleeping in a delectable position by her then boyfriend. It was very private, very personal and very none-of-our business, until the boyfriend, by now a spurned ex-beau, decided to expose those intimate moments to an unsuspecting but wildly receptive crowd.
Sex, scandal and aberrant behavior categorized under sex and scandal is perhaps the most seductive social spectacle in Malaysia, followed by Machiavellian politics like the brutish kind you see in Ipoh and Kuala Kangsar, and murder of the most heinous classification, like the horror in Ampang yesterday where a killer and/or killers slashed a family to death but spared the life of a one-year old.
But, in the Malaysian scheme of things where tenuous crumbs of hinted scandal is good enough for a full-blown case, Elizabeth Wong has been hounded and ridiculed…and it’s not even her fault.
If you think that Ms Wong is the same plate of fetish delight sautéed to entertain the masses baying for blood and opprobrium, think again. She is hardly typical. Granted, the low resolution pictures of her sleeping torso - likely snapped with a low-pixel handphone camera under mild lighting - are somewhat compromising.
Well, who wouldn’t be that way in the strict privacy of their own bedroom? That is the absolute point. Any pictures taken from within that moment and released to the outside world - provided Ms Wong genuinely had no knowledge of the deed - will always be viewed out of context.
But released to the outside world it was and according to some reports, a handful of pictures and perhaps a video too is floating in cyberspace. Yes, I have seen the pictures. Wong is wearing a t-shirt and a sarong, and is sleeping with her legs spread open. She is not wearing any undergarments. This is not the definition of "nude" as widely alleged .
The spurned boyfriend, whoever the scoundrel is, mischievously released the pictures/video in a moment of post-breakup wrath. It is this lout, and not Elizabeth Wong, who should be pilloried.
For the media, there is a dilemma whenever things like this happen. If it is purely a personal matter with no repercussions on others, do they keep things out of the press? And even if they did, what assurance is there that it won’t appear on the Internet?
But once the news is out, really, there is not much point blaming the newspapers for continuing to use it. When the public’s prurient interest in such matters is raised to fever pitch, newspapers which ignore the interest do so at their own peril in terms of losing out to other rival newspapers.
It is news and there is an obligation to report what transpires after that and how a public figure responds to an unfolding event of great stress to her and the reactions of those around her.
Despite everything we say about the right to privacy and our public position that Wong did no wrong, it will be hypocritical if those concerned milk the issue and still insist that she pay the price with her resignation.
Let’s admit and acknowledge that for a wide section of the public — the vast majority of us normal human beings — there are boyfriends and girlfriends and intimate moments of great privacy.
If a partner violates that privacy for any reason, the other party is not to blame — the blame lies with the person who broke that trust, not the person who gave it.
If that is what we believe as a society, then Wong’s offer to resign should be rejected. If we believe that and still accept her resignation, then we are hypocrites for we are holding her responsible for merely, like the rest of us, being human.
Whichever way this whole sad, sorry episode turns out, the unquestioned criminal in this case is the person who took and distributed the pictures, and it must be pretty clear and obvious to any competent investigator who that is by now.
My hope is that the ex-boyfriend does not get off scot-free for perpetrating what is essentially a sordid crime. He should be prosecuted to the full extent of the law.
Do not pass moral judgment on Elizabeth until and unless you know the whole truth. For now, respect Wong's right to her privacy. Give her space and respect her decision. Remember what Jesus said - let him who is without sin cast the first stone.