The Media Desk contributes local, national and international news articles for the website and also focuses on news content of the Muslim world. etters commenting on broad issues are also regularly sent to the editors of newspapers Below are a few letters which were sent by the Media Desk and published in newspapers. Bias and negative reporting against Islam has become a very real phenomenon in the media, especially in the international press.
The Darul Ihsan Media Desk primarily monitors the media for Islamaphobic (anti-Islamic) comments and anti-Islamic sentiments made in the mainstream media and interacts positively with media portals conveying the Islamic perspective.
Your front page reporting of children raping each other is probably only the tip of the iceberg. Some of the current activities of learners at schools are not much to be desired. This obviously cannot be attributed as blame to the schools and educators; it’s largely a social problem.
In the name of enjoyment, entertainment and pleasure, our children are growing into an advanced stage of modernization where parents have lost a great deal of control over their children. Parental advice and disciplining of children are probably things of the past. They have a mind of their own and do as they please. While we cannot squarely place the blame on any one particular aspect of life; however, since the introduction of the chat rooms, mxit, violent movies, etc. the situation has exacerbated to alarming proportions. The stabbings, assault, substance abuse of pupils and attacks on teachers is really out of control.
The general behavior and activities of many children is indeed disturbing. In fact a great deal of undesirable activities goes unnoticed which need to be checked and corrected immediately. It is hoped that parents and all caring South Africans find solutions to better the situation and lend their support in this direction.
The reality is that more than eighty percent of South Africans cannot afford private health care and therefore it is incumbent that the state provide basic health care.
It was indeed disturbing to learn in an article some weeks ago that newborn babies are sometimes kept to rest in cardboard boxes at the Chris Hani Baragwanath hospital – the world's biggest hospital. Latest report reads, “Minister Blames shortages” in the twist of babies dying at government hospitals in a deadly klebsiella outbreak. The Minister blames this to the lack of resources – well then the government must do something and dare not wait for another five babies to die before deciding to do something.
It is really time to reflect and the Department of Health clearly needs to take some action. In general, government hospitals by and large require an upgrade of facilities and equipment. Housing and health care should be top priorities: needless to say that to some extent the government has failed to deliver.
I was immensely perturbed by the incident in which a non-white family was humiliated by being forced to leave a 'Whites only' shower facility at one of the camping resorts in the Cape.
This type of discrimination is definitely not acceptable. It is a slap in the face to all South Africans who worked and fought relentlessly in the bitter struggle against apartheid.
This latest unfortunate incident reveals that apartheid is still alive in the hearts and minds of some South Africans, a decade after it was officially abolished. It is very sad to note that in this day and age South Africans have to witness racism when the majority of the oppressed people of this country have forgotten and forgiven the harsh past.
Though we are still a young democracy, a forgiving nation and a tolerant people, let this not be an excuse to turn a blind eye on the incident but rather ensure that appropriate measures are taken by the relevant authorities in dealing with the matter.
The Daily News
Education Minister, Naledi Pandor must be complimented for her deep insight and sensitivity with regard to her call for a ban on publishing matric results for public viewing.
Pupils with good results will obviously not object to public viewing but consideration must be made for those who perform poorly. One needs to be sensitive toward their feelings. Pandor's thoughtfulness towards this end is appreciated.
The young matriculants should be at ease and enter into their next phase of learning without being taunted and embarrassed by a low aggregate pass. They need to walk with confidence and embrace the challenges of their educational career in a positive way. Good luck to all.
The Daily News
Load Shedding - in the New South Africa.
With the re-opening of schools and industry in the New Year, frequent outages would be expected. Eskom and municipalities have given us warnings to ‘brace up’ for electricity cuts.
However, finding sufficient ways to resolve and overcome the problem needs to be explored and extensively discussed. The public may not fully understand the workings of the system but information from the providers of electricity might ease the very uncomfortable situation that exists.
It is intriguing to note that ‘load shedding’ and outages were not common in the past.
The respective departments must be sympathetic that people pay for services and if they default they bear the consequences.
The Daily News
Are we living 'Out' of 'Ages'?
The load shedding, outages, shortages, power-cuts, load-cuts, undercuts – call it whatever you want – it's taken a heavy toll on everyone – individuals, households and businesses. The complaints and remarks of almost everyone are echoed with a sense of frustration and deep seated anger.
I was wondering whether Eskom and the local municipality should consider controlled power cuts during the autumn and spring seasons – avoiding the hot summers when fans and air-conditioners are used extensively, and likewise in the winter months when electric heaters are used most.
May I also suggest that during the months when the load is most high that only alternate street lights are switched on. A similar programme can be implemented at recreational facilities, parks and public venues to save on electricity. Another consideration for the council is to implement a points system, i.e. those using a certain percentage of electricity will qualify for an uninterrupted power supply. This will motivate people to exercise restraint when consuming electricity.
The city of Durban needs to undergo a tremendous upliftment programme especially with regard to toilet facilities made available to the public. It was shocking to have read about the appalling and detoriating conditions of the so called public toilets in the city centre.
When money could be spent on the A5 grand prix and other events, likewise money should be spent on improving the basic amenities which is essentially part of the infrastructure of any place. It’s extremely difficult to find a public toilet in the CBD of Durban except for those recently installed, where the person’s face and feet are exposed to the public eye while urinating standing. This is grossly unsightly and of course unhygienic in terms of the overflow and stench as highlighted in your report. What do the poor females do in this part of the world?
It is surprising that the city health department who is normally active in combating health hazards have by-passed this one. While attention is focused on this, may I suggest that the Health Dept. also look into the standing water caused by the common washing of vehicles on the streets, at parking lots and taxi ranks? In many places, the tar has eroded due to the excessive flow and standing of water.
The authorities require to pay more attention to such calling needs. The building - and not simply placing the mobile toilets - is of utmost urgency.
Please allow me to respond to the MP's suggestion to "legalize prostitution for 2010". Some of the arguments put forward in favour of legalizing prostitution were (in my opinion) weak and flimsy.
To begin with, how can a person in the position of leadership suggest that an immoral act can become a means of success? The very act of women selling themselves is shameful and disgraceful. To say that it should be legalized "because people don't have access to women" is indeed immature and foolish. In other words, the MP is saying that if women are not "willingly" offering themselves then men should be encouraged to pay for their services.
Again, it is a feeble argument to say that with the legalization of prostitution, people would no longer "do things in the dark". The fact that they are doing it in the dark indicates that sex out of wedlock, fornication, adultery and illicit relationships are considered abhorrent and detestable by society as a whole. By legalizing this vile act, would this not then reduce the immorality associated with prostitution and normalise something originally considered to be underhanded?
Sex workers would bring in more tax money- does this mean that things that are immoral should be welcomed by society as long as they generate money? This would create jobs – let’s not say anything more about such a silly statement.
So before we support and promote the MPs suggestion, let us all first think very carefully about whether we want to inject more immorality and the wide spread of indecency into our society.
I wish to comment on the article entitled, "Gay couples are happier then most" (27.02.08).
This may offend people who are in favour of or practice homosexuality and who are members of the same sex civil unions which was recently legalized in South Africa.
In the last decade or two the coming together between men and women of the same gender has been widely and strongly promoted throughout the world. Much has been said of human rights and the freedom to be in a relationship with a partner of your choice – even if he/she is of the same gender. Over the years this kind of mindset has been created by handfuls of people targeting the masses, encouraging them to accept unions of the same gender.
Similarly, the article suggests that such unions are far more "successful", enjoy "greater intimacy" and are prone to "less conflict" compared to heterosexual couples.
While studies and surveys can be of some help (depending on the information we are looking for), the very issue of same-sex relationships or marriages is in principle unnatural. God created human beings in pairs: man and woman, for the purpose of procreation. To tamper with this is altering God’s divine plan and system. No religion (or at least the classical ones supported by ‘divine’ scriptures) permits the uniting of two people of the same gender. It is only with the emergence of new-age man-made cults or philosophies that this concept is accepted.
When a country like Kenya – one of Africa’s most stable – stumbles into unrest and chaos, then our continent’s future looks bleak.
Africa is plagued with continuous instability, the most worrying being the factional and infighting in many countries.
The collapse of many African governments can be attributed to intolerance of ethnic differences and tribalism as witnessed in Somalia, Rwanda, etc.
In Somalia there were no factional differences. Outside interference caused divisions which eventually ended in anarchy.
This ‘outside interference’ seems to be a modus operandi in many war-torn countries in Africa.
It is indeed very sad to hear the many horrific stories of innocent people being butchered and mercilessly killed.
Strong and stable countries in Africa should form an alliance and assist and address the issues in Africa under the auspices of the African Union.
Yet again an African country, this time, Chad, is up in flames with a possibility of a repeat of like Somalia or Rwanda. With hardly a few days into the crises in Kenya, we see more carnage, bloodshed and anarchy.
The list of war-torn African countries appears to be never-ending.
Once again a call is made to the countries of the African continent to establish an African Union of the United States of Africa (USA). In this way foreign interventions will be unlikely and less threatening to the African continent.
Sure a dream comes true when we of the African continent can resolve our own issues. So many countries in the last two decades have been affected. Virtually destroyed either by civil war or dictatorship rule. Let the African leaders as soon as possible wake up to the call of unity before the entire African continent is engulfed in flames.
The Daily News
As an ordinary South African, I am disturbed by the number of skilled South Africans emigrating from our shores. The situation has become somewhat threatening to the economy.
The number of skilled South Africans migrating oversees is a great worry. Such people cannot be replaced overnight especially the experienced band of people. Their move has left a big vacuum. Importing skilled people from abroad as replacements will not work as a ‘quick-fix’ to the situation.
The government needs to come out clean and clear. An intensive survey needs to be undertaken as to determine the reason/s the migrants and would be migrants leaving their birth place and the country that educated them. Whatever the reason/s the government needs to address the issues immediately and seriously. It is obvious that the government may not be in a position to address all the leave grievances, however at least some common issues may be dealt with that could help the authorities in sorting the problems. For example, load-shedding is sending negative vibes across the country together with the spiralling crime rate which probably tops the list, and not much has been done to alleviate the fears of the people in this regard thus far.
The Daily News
The re-publishing of caricatures of the Holy Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) in newspapers across Denmark is, once again, a direct attack on Islam and Muslims.
Despite a continuous call by Muslims all over the world the Danish government has refused to take appropriate action by banning the caricatures and cartoons appearing in newspapers in Denmark.
Any attack in any form on any religion is unacceptable and the action of these Danish newspapers and the refusal of the Danish government to apologize to Muslims has rekindled anger in the hearts of Muslims.
It is sad and disappointing that so called “civilised” people and nations allow “uncivilised” behaviour.
Just when we thought South Africa is within meters away from a recession, another petrol hike next month will have a ripple effect on basic commodities. How does it feel – maybe ask the ordinary Iraqi…for over a decade Iraqi's have suffered unbearable pain and suffering from the economic sanctions of the U.S.A. Over a million people suffered and died as a direct result of the US aggression against a nation suspected of housing weapons of mass destruction.
It is obvious with so many men dying in the Iraq-Iran war and subsequently the Gulf war and now the US invasion, the number of women that have become widows cannot be exaggerated. The Iraqi government is not in any position to assist the millions who seek help in a devastated and torn-up country. A very sad and disheartening situation.
One wonders what is it like to be in Iraq where bombs go off like car accidents on our deadly roads in South Africa. Women and children have probably suffered the most and continue to suffer the survival of unpredictable circumstances. The Iraqi mothers and daughters have not only become breadwinners but have taken the responsibility of the nation's men folk. We pray to God for the country to return to normality.
The Daily News
The question being asked in the corridors of police departments and parliament is the continuity of the scorpions. While some politicians disfavour and discredit the specialised unit, others equally acknowledge the unit's vital role in our current situation, especially when corruption has grown out of proportion.
I believe the unit, Scorpions, or given any other name, must serve the same purpose: assisting police and other law enforcement agencies with difficult and complicated issues.
Perhaps the real issue to discuss and iron-out is the personnel appointed to Scorpion members that need to be selected on merit. Their integrity and character must not be compromised, least to say no shady characters. They must be the best all-rounders in the country.
The study currently being undertaken of the rivers in and around the greater Durban area is indeed shocking and a cause for great concern. Despite a report filed last year, it is disheartening to note that thus far nothing has been done to improve the disastrous situation.
We are living in an environment with dangerous waters that are prone to diseases and place people’s lives under high risk. As the research article published on 7 January 2008 points out, thirty percent of the watercourses around Durban are severely polluted. The situation obviously poses an imminent danger to society at large. It is about time that the responsible and respective local departments took action.
While load-shedding is featuring as our number one problem and priority, let us not forget about combating the various other serious problems in the country, such as crime and environmental issues.