'Totally out of line': Patrick Teoh faces backlash over remarks about Muslims
KUALA LUMPUR: The Malaysian social media scene has been hit by another bombshell, this time involving actor and radio personality Patrick Teoh who, on Facebook, used uncouth and vulgar words in his criticisms on entertainment guidelines issued by the Pas-led Kedah government.
Referring to guidelines issued by the Kedah state government to organisers of this year’s 1Malaysia Chinese New Year Celebration, Teoh said: “It also stated that performers are encouraged to sing motivational songs and that if extreme singing and dancing activities were to take place, the state government has the right to shut down the programme.”
“Encouraged to sing motivational songs!!! What kind of f***ing motivation they want? Give up individuality and be sheep? Pray 5 times a day? Cover up all women? What???!!!”.
"And while they are at it, please tell us what the f**k extreme singing and dancing is?"
He concluded his statement by referring to Pas as “Quran-thumping motherf***ers”.
Teoh’s choice of words provoked a backlash on Facebook, Twitter and in blogs.
Among those to criticise Teoh on Twitter was another actor and radio personality, Dato’ AC Mizal, who said Teoh was rude and disrespectful, warned him “Don’t ridicule my religion,” and called him a racist.
Several of AC’s followers expressed anger as well, with one suggesting Teoh’s outburst was a sign that the end of the world is near, and another telling Teoh to go to hell, complete with a graphic of someone raising their middle finger.
Another Twitter user said “Patrick Teoh is far worse than the Zohra lady," a reference to Suara Wanita 1Malaysia head Sharifah Zohra Jabeen, whose stern remarks to a student at a public forum recently caused controversy.
Another tweeted “I'm an admirer of Patrick Teoh. His comments and his takes on local scenarios has always been interesting. But that... Damn that’s a new low.”
Umno Youth leader Khairy Jamaluddin tweeted “Patrick Teoh could hv criticised PAS govt ruling without harsh comments against Muslims. Don't stoop to his level pls.”
The issue soon spilled over into the blogosphere, where blogger Taiping Mali said that while Teoh could be forgiven for criticising the Prime Minister and various BN politicians, “when he insults Muslim women who wear hijab and insults Muslims who pray it seems he can’t be forgiven”.
“If Patrick Teoh doesn’t want to respect the cultural customs of Malay people and sees fit to insult Islam like this, then it’s better if he just takes off to another country,” the blogger wrote.
Teoh was not spared by the pro-opposition blogger Warta Shubhi who criticised him for overstepping the boundaries of respect for the religion, saying “If you want to criticise Pas, go ahead, that’s your right. But don’t criticise Islam, don’t criticise the five daily prayers…"
“How about we do a protest and go snatch Patrick Teoh, tie him up and hang him from a jambu tree and unleash ants and let him languish there for a day and a night…good enough for him…he’s really disrespectful!”
Teoh deleted the contentious remarks from his Facebook page and later posted an apology, saying “Whoa!!!...whoa...whoa...I now realise what I did that was wrong and why it generated so much hate-mail. I had thought that the criticism came from my use of the phrase, "Quran-thumping m***** F*****..." I was wrong. It came from my reference to ‘Give up individuality and be sheep? Pray 5 times a day? Cover up all women?’ which was totally out of line. It didn't convey what I was trying to say in the post and came out like a bigoted selfish statement.”
Teoh’s apology drew further criticism, including from his supporters.
“Almost all of us here on your friend list are against the gov, so please do mind certain phrases that you use and take care it will not be easily misconstrued to offend anyone anyhow,” wrote Kevin Lee Ratanankorn. “The repercussions can be worse than you think.”
“Your post reflected your personal hatred and in return you have managed to stir up hatred. Instant Karma,” Paul Lau wrote.
While critics of Teoh were legion, some also criticised what they said were extreme responses to Teoh’s statement.
Dear Patrick, when you insult people's faith and righteous way of life, that's when we MUSLIMS will unite. Your condenscending attitude in your social media and meetings, clearly reflects the TYPICAL DAP-mentality that you carry with you.
You deserve to be infamous from hereon.
Your remarks, done intentionally, are perhaps a blessing in disguise;
Many of us now realise you as a pro-DAP pro-Opposition supporter; and combined with the disclosure of your heinous attitude, can now see the true colours of the non-Muslim Opposition.
Good thing your stupid remarks get re-tweeted..and you deserve to be disgraced.
Please choose CHINA or TAIWAN as your choice for migration. Not many Muslims there to bother you.
MOre about Patrick Teoh and his political inclination here......long before this week's religious insult.
More comments here:
"Penulis nak cakap, orang macam Patrick Teoh ini membentuk tiga suku dari keseluruhan penyokong DAP, silap-silap 90%. Tanya diri sendiri, inikah bentuk parti dan idealogi yang kita nak serahkan pemerintahan negara ni?
Tidak hairanlah kenapa di negeri-negeri yang depa perintah, terutama di Selangor dan Pulau Pinang, Islam dihinakan, murtad dibenarkan. Sebab yang dokong parti-parti tersebut adalah orang macam Patrick Teoh inilah."