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.
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.
The Daily News
Zimbabwe, the land of a thousand disputes, where price hikes of basic commodities is just as debilitating to the country as load-shedding has been in South Africa. One cannot imagine how the locals survive at such exorbitant prices of basic necessities.
Zimbabwe makes South Africa look like a very affordable country to live in. If my calculations are correct, Zim pays something like 10 million Zim Dollars (R 2500) for a litre of petrol! So us South Africans really shouldn’t complain about next month's petrol hike to R8.00 a litre. A ridiculous price indeed – but just compare that to life across our border.
But somehow, despite everything, Zimbabwe still survives countless economic sanctions and a tirade of political uncertainties. The ordinary observer (like myself) is baffled by the survival of the country and its citizens after having gone through so many upheavals and disruptions countrywide.
Motor-sport enthusiasts spend many hours enjoying viewing the sport, either live or on TV.
Many thousands of litres of petrol are consumed by these sports vehicles on the race tracks of the world.
Yearly South Africans enjoy the A1 racing in Durban.
Ironically, while hundreds of litres of petrol are consumed, South Africans are bracing themselves for another petrol hike next month.
Each time there is a petrol hike the cost of living goes up and the plight of poor and needy worsens.
Officials of the A1 should consider assisting the needy from the profits generated from the racing event.
While the idea of a million-man march against crime may be a move to shake-up the authorities, the lethargic attitude of our government is also largely to blame. Owing to their complacency, the thieves, robbers, rapists and other criminals are having a field day.
Another possible move is to sign a countrywide petition in which South Africans would be demonstrating their solidarity toward fighting crime. People should approach government to strengthen and increase the police force with an additional budget. The public should assist the police by erecting satellite police stations. However together with the ideas, the solution is to actually engage and seek practical implementation.
Housing has always been the number one priority from the side of the government. Of course, shelter is an essential need of every human being and the government has a responsibility to meet this need. Admittedly the demand for homes to the ordinary South Africans in the next fifty years cannot be met.
A report titled, "Power crises threatens to abort property projects" simply extinguishes the hopes of the people. There is not enough power to supply these new developments that will see thousands of homes unoccupied for ‘God only knows how long’.
Some may regard this as an unforeseen circumstance while others would squarely place blame on bad planning. We don't see this in the sales of vehicles; manufacturers make sure of the continuous production of vehicle spare parts. On the lighter note, the halt on housing developments would keep the light burning at the existing homes.
The university saga of blatant discrimination against a group of black people by one group of white people falls in the category of inhumane behaviour. Civilized and sensible human beings cannot act in such vile and barbaric ways.
The perpetrators were not some street people or laymen but an educated bunch of cowards. This thing about initiation at universities must be unconditionally banned throughout the country's institutions. In any case initiation programmes are aimed at fellow first year students not on the general services’ staff.
South Africa has seen an extremely difficult past with discrimination unheard of in any other part of the world. It is indeed sad that since the abolishment of apartheid in South Africa - in the last decade - has changed very little in the minds and hearts of some people. A great applause to the majority of South African indigenous people to have forgiven the horrible past. People committing such dastardly acts must be brought to book and accordingly punished.
The Daily News
Once again, road accidents have taken a heavy toll on our South African roads. The horrific scenes of twisted metal on our roads are the grim reminder of many such accidents some one year back.
The problems are multiple: speed, bad driving, drunken drivers and unworthy vehicles. Just who, and when will all of this be fixed. Your guess is as good as the rainbow nation's guess. South Africans are slowly beginning to live with new driving skills: skipping red robots, overtaking on barrier lines, driving through yellow lines, etc.
The good cops are doing an excellent job albeit a few, bribery and corruption from the part of some drivers and some authorities has a direct impact on the road accidents. Don't these people realise that daily people are losing their lives.
Did the president in the first place make a mistake by introducing the Scorpions as a crime fighting unit? I am pretty sure it must have been a well planned and strategised thought before implementation. After all the Scorpions were an elite unit directly under the President’s wing.
The survey indicates that most South Africans are in favour of this unit which again confirms that South Africans are sick and tired of crime. Certainly the SAPS and all the existing law-enforcement agencies are unable to cope with the spiralling crime rate.
Come on. Is government deaf to the cries of the people? How many people will be slain by criminals before the authorities take the matter seriously? Viva to the "Million march" on crime.
The Daily News
Xenophobia in South Africa is presently an explosive topic.
South Africans are generally accommodating and welcoming of all peoples, especially after the experience of our dark past.
However, the real problem is not one of xenophobia but rather of poverty and unemployment.
Inflation, high and ever increasing food prices, increasing unemployment, lack of housing, etc. is taking a toll on all South Africans.
Foreigners and illegal immigrants have flooded the central business districts and some townships.
They have also found employment with low pay thereby creating fear and unemployment among our citizens.
Our government needs to address this situation as its first responsibility is to South African citizens and, hopefully, xenophobia will fizzle out.