Why my friend Chetz made that video

From Aneesa Alphonsus
August 1, 2013

Chetz Togom or Maznah Mohd Yusof is my best friend. Today, she’s being harassed, hounded and harangued for a video she made three years ago on how she spent that particular Hari Raya with her dogs. I was there when the video was shot and since TV stations are not taking the trouble to find out why she made that video, I’m going to tell them and all the others who are screaming for Chetz’s blood why she made that video.

It was late morning when she took her dogs for a walk. When she came home, Chetz cleaned herself, then she washed the dogs’ paws as she planned on bringing them into the house for some treats. When I asked her why she did it this way, she said, “No special reason, I just want people to know that having dogs isn’t a dirty thing. We clean them and we clean ourselves well.”

That was it. It has nothing to do with all the fuss about “ambik air sembahyang dengan anjing” (taking abolution with the dogs) that some irresponsible media quarters are harping on as are some bloggers who don’t know head or tail, pun not intended, about the situation.

Then there is the question of the takbir Raya. Chetz put it in the video because it reminds her of her late grandmother who raised her, plus the fact that it is significant to Hari Raya. What is the harm in that? How does this show disrespect to Islam?

I want to add that she has also been given a very hard time by certain individuals who berated her for being a Muslim who rescues and works with dogs. When she shares videos about noted Islamic teachers and scholars speaking about dogs being permissible in Islam, the retorts, among others, include. “ Why must you help dogs? Why can’t you help people?”

So now, Chetz has to help who they think she should? Anyone who knows Chetz will attest to how much respect she has for her faith and religion. She has battled inwardly with several of her choices in regards to helping dogs, and has been troubled numerous times because of this.

It takes courage to do this. It takes courage to go through something like this – to follow what your heart and conscience tells you, to the chagrin of people who react so unfairly to something they don’t care to find out more about.

Chetz is a good person and she has never, not once, said anything against her faith and religion. To think that a harmless video made over three years ago is being dredged up now, makes one wonder why? Why now?

And is the video so offensive that it warrants death threats? Who gives anyone the right to say, “I’m going to find a gun a shoot this person who made the video”? Is it really that severe?

Watch the video again and see for yourself if there is any intent to offend Islam. It saddens and disappoints me that with so many issues that should be brought to the fore, some quarters are choosing to make something out of nothing. This is what the mob mentality is about.

To journalists, news editors, bloggers, Facebook and other social media users, I ask of you, please use discernment and see if something really warrants such a harsh response.

What if it were you, or someone you loved, or someone who know who is being persecuted wrongly? Wouldn’t you wish they were given the proverbial fair trial before judgment? What happened to the being given the benefit of the doubt, or does this not apply when it comes to religion.

  1. #1 by undertaker888 on Friday, 2 August 2013 - 7:37 am

    Sometimes I wonder who or what is more unclean. The dog or those people.

    • #2 by cemerlang on Saturday, 3 August 2013 - 8:00 pm

      Animals whether halal or haram do not follow humans’ system of doing things. They do not need religions. Humans on the other hands need religions or principles if they think they create themselves.

  2. #3 by bruno on Friday, 2 August 2013 - 8:00 am

    It is not about who made the video.These people who are making all these noises are just out looking for troubles.If some Umnoputras are keeping these dogs and making the video,these trouble makers will be quiet as tikus and still be kissing and smelling their smelly butts.

  3. #5 by lee tai king (previously dagen) on Friday, 2 August 2013 - 8:58 am

    Going gaga over plain chetz and the alvivi pransters but taking it slow with violent and armed criminals and threading with extreme care with monsterO’mamak, zul and ibrahim.

    Satu Umno-style.

  4. #6 by Bigjoe on Friday, 2 August 2013 - 9:27 am

    What Maznah is going through is simply A TRAVESTY – she is the Malay proverbial mousedeer that has been trampled on because the Elephant played. (Kancil mati ditengah bila Gajah berlaga).

    But the real tragedy is NOT even been played out yet. The truth is Muhiyiddin has considerable political capital with the far right of his party – its his base he rose from that he is not beholden to anyone even Mahathir for it. If necessary reform is to be done, the truth is Muhiyiddin probabbly has one of the biggest political capital in this country to contribute to real reform.

    The real tragedy, he is not likely to use that political capital towards real reform – because firstly he does not believe in it and secondly, he does not have the capacity to make the intellectual and courageous leap necessary on his own.

    It is likely Muhiyiddin career has peaked more or less. For Mahathir, the most ideal scenario is Najib staying for a little while longer only to be replaced by Mukhriz is his ideal scenario. Muhiyddin is walking right into Mahathir’s ideal scenario of playing second fiddle to his son by insisting on taking the well-trodden path he and many have done which he has been successful before .

    Without the leap in thinking and mind, Muhiyiddin will likely waste away his long accumulated political capital for not much more than his personal gains in the future. THAT is the real tragedy to ALL of us..


  5. #7 by yhsiew on Friday, 2 August 2013 - 9:37 am

    If Chetz Togom is not allowed to train her dogs, it will only be fair that the police force stops training dogs! The government cannot practice double standards.

  6. #8 by ENDANGERED HORNBILL on Friday, 2 August 2013 - 10:10 am

    Stupid UMNO.

    They should instead go solve how 3,000 civil servants can be bankrupted in 1 year.

    Does that mean in the last 10 years, 30,000 civil servants were made bankrupts or more?

    Najib, some answers please. Under Malaysian laws, they are all condemned for life. What a shame!

    • #9 by cemerlang on Saturday, 3 August 2013 - 8:07 pm

      Do you know what it takes to be successful in the gomen service ? Boss, what do you like ?

  7. #10 by balance88 on Friday, 2 August 2013 - 10:13 am

    I am appalled at the way Maznah was treated by the media and the social network. What she has done was harmless and certainly does not warrant her arrest. Without reading and analyzing too much into her video and on the Islamic religion (though I am aware of the sensitivities of Muslims towards dogs), to me, she was just a person who loved dogs and she happens to be Muslim.

    What is so wrong with that. This is really puzzling, How about drug addicts then, and how about corruption then. Are these acts condoned by any one religion. I don’t think so.

    This poor lady is subjected to all sort of abuse which is really unfair to her. I wish people would just lay off her and let her be. What she did was harmless. I do not know her, but she seems like a nice person and I can see that she meant no insult to her religion.

    The rakyat, especially the police force, should re-focus on more pressing issues like the current spate of gun killings and robberies and snatch thieves and on-going corruptions. Its funny how in Malaysia we are always hood winked into non-critical issues to mask the real critical issues.

    • #11 by cemerlang on Saturday, 3 August 2013 - 8:11 pm

      Somebody got this issue into the open and has the attention of big people up there and this somebody will get a raise in salary, a nice title, more privileges.

  8. #12 by sheriff singh on Friday, 2 August 2013 - 12:20 pm

    A lot of people and institutions have made this into a racial cum religious issue when there should have been none. Will they now have the guts to do the right thing and make amends during this Ramadhan month?

    Who will take the lead? Muhyiddin Yassin? Ibrahim Ali? The ‘buttocks’ veterans? Her accuser who made an issue of her video? Jakim? MCMC? Even the MCA people who called her ‘insensitive and provocative’? But knowing BN government people, they will all do the ‘elegant silence’ thingy.

    (p/s Did you see how well her dogs were trained and kept? Wish there were more decent people like Maznah.)

  9. #13 by pulau_sibu on Friday, 2 August 2013 - 4:05 pm

    as i said, bangladesh muslims are fine with dogs and they raise dogs. not sure why malaysian government made so much fuss out of the dogs

  10. #14 by sheriff singh on Friday, 2 August 2013 - 4:29 pm

    Your comment is awaiting moderation.

    A lot of people and institutions have made this into a racial cum religious issue when there should have been none. Will they now have the guts to do the right thing and make amends during this Ramadhan month?

    Who will take the lead? Muhyiddin Yas$in? Ibrahim Ali? The ‘buttocks’ veterans? Her accuser who made an issue of her video? Jakim? MCMC? Even the MCA people who called her ‘insensitive and provocative’? But knowing BN government people, they will all do the ‘elegant silence’ thingy.

    (p/s Did you see how well her dogs were trained and kept? Wish there were more decent people like Maznah.)

  11. #15 by sheriff singh on Friday, 2 August 2013 - 4:32 pm

    Who is her accuser? Who will charge / prosecute her in court? The person in Segamat who lodged a complaint? the Police ? The A-G Chambers ? JAWI ? MCMC ? Who ?

  12. #16 by Noble House on Saturday, 3 August 2013 - 4:35 am

    Since when there has been an example of a priest-ridden people maintaining a free civil government? This marks the lowest grade of ignorance, of which their political as well as religious leaders will always avail themselves for their own purpose. Is life so dear or peace so sweet as to be purchased at the price of chains and slavery?

    The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the ways its animals are treated ~ Mahatma Gandhi.

  13. #17 by negarawan on Saturday, 3 August 2013 - 9:41 am

    Almighty Allah is always compassionate and merciful. The way UMNO and the Islamic authorities are handling this case and many others does not show any sign of compassion and mercy. It is more humane to educate rather than to persecute in the name of Allah. What is the crime of this gentle soul in showing her love for creations of Allah, albeit perhaps in a slightly immature manner? Why is UMNO, the PDRM and Islamic authorities punishing her in such inhumane and unjust manner when they have more important and pressing issues at hand? What are the priorities of UMNO, the judiciary and PDRM in Malaysia right now in view of the unabated rise in violent crimes?

  14. #19 by Bamboo on Sunday, 4 August 2013 - 11:05 am

    A few reasons why Umno and Umno side kick NGOs are so loud to dfend malays and Islam:
    1. Diversion from real issues of coruption, balloning national debt, increasing crimes, falling standard in education etc ie failure of Umn to rule Malaysia well.
    2. Umno party elections in the horizon. These issues are trumpeted to allow those aspiring to rise up in Umno hierarchy as champion to defend Islam and Malays. eg the DPM.
    3. These Muslims dont know the real dos and donts in Islam.

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