Dissecting Indonesia’s Social Justice: The Suspension of Students That Has Moves Like Jagger

By N Mark Castro

Five female high school students decided to have fun, danced around, videoed themselves, and uploaded it on YouTube. About 19,000 people liked it, which is a mere fraction considering most viral explosions of videos these days.

But it sounded just about right.

They were not doing drugs.

They were not doing sexually-explicit moves.

They were not having sex.

They were not maliciously implying anything.

They were kids.

They were dancing.

Then the unthinkable happened:

The headmaster of their school, Muallimin, said he decided to report the students to the police after consulting with the Indonesian Ulema Council (MUI) and Islamic Defenders Front (FPI).

“The students were performing Sholat [prayer] movement with dancing while alternately reciting [the] Koran and turning on ‘One More Night’ music,” Muallimin said, referring to the Maroon 5 song.

And in one of the swiftest dispensation of justice in the country, they expelled the children from school and now face time in juvenile detention for “tainting religion”.

And to add a serious display of the utter ignorance and stupidity of everyone involved in mismanaging this issue, the student were not only expelled but were also prohibited from taking the much-delayed and graft-ridden national exam, which counts for 60% of a student’s final mark to determine whether they will graduate from high school.

According to The Jakarta Globe, the expulsion was approved by the FPI Tolitoli branch head, local Youth and Sports Agency, Tolitoli Religious Affairs Ministry and the MUI.


First of all, what the headmaster of the school should have done was use his wisdom which, unfortunately, he did not have. What he did have is a tongue ready to lash out on the youthful errors of these kids and apply instead the harshest possible sentence that would destroy their lives.

He could have reprimanded them.

He could have extolled the true virtues of Islam.

He could have called for the parents of the children.

He could have suspended them.

He could have made these children plant trees.

He could have made these children write a sorrowful note on the board.

He could have explained to them, in a fatherly if not scholarly way, how their actions could hurt the sentiments of the people, the faith of a nation, and be the “elder” that he ought to be in reaching out to the youth in protecting their Asian-values.

Instead, he hands them over to the wolves.

IslamWeb_Kids_11It would have made no difference had he swatted them like the flies he thinks them to be.

Granted that the idiotic headmaster did not know his left from his right, especially since he had to consult the FPI Tolitoli branch head, I expected a bit more from the local Youth and Sports Agency and even the Tolitoli Religious Affairs Ministry.

But I suppose even that was a stretch, especially since the Indonesian Ulema Council (MUI) condoned such decision.

If there’s anyone that should be expelled and forbidden from the practice of Islam, it should have been these people that destroyed the future and traumatized the lives of these errant children.

That it has received nationwide attention yet has continued to fall on deaf ears and blind eyes of national government is beyond understanding.

Parents … beware.

Not what your children learn in this highly globalized world … but of the academic institutions and the elders to which you entrust them.


About Asmartrock

N. Mark Castro is the Southeast Asia Director of JUMP DIGITAL Asia, which is an internationally-awarded and fully integrated digital marketing agency with 5 out of 10 offices in the ASEAN region. He is also the Secretary General of the Philippine Business Club Indonesia, managing and assisting the traffic of investments between the Philippines and Indonesia. He shuttles between Indonesia, Philippines, Myanmar, Singapore, Cambodia, and Australia. The views posted here are his own and do not in any way reflect the views of the companies he represents.

Posted on April 24, 2013, in General, Politics, Religion and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.

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