The Jakarta Post
April 24, Online
An unmarried couple has been caned by order of the Bener Meriah regency administration in Aceh after they were found guilty of making love.
The caning of Satrio Guntari bin Suwondo and Saidatul Husni binti Samsul Aam was carried out in public after Friday prayers at Al-Amin Pante Raya grand mosque in Bukit District, in accordance with the shariah code that is implemented in Aceh.
I'm not really that offended by caning if that is the strict punishment that society chooses to mete out. The perversity of Aceh's sharia code is that it is only a burden on the poorest members of society.
Not once have we seen an official whipped for corruption or a company owner for the massive deforestation taking place there, and certainly nobody from those shadowy figures who are making so much money from the ganja trade.
In the end, this just seems like a convenient distraction and illusion of morality in a society that is crumbling slowly into economic, environmental and cultural failure.
Look what happens when Islamists take power. Caning people for making love is absolutely disgusting. What kind of punishment will Indonesia's jihadists receive when they come home after they're done murdering fellow Muslims for the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria?
It is a medieval punishment. I cannot believe that this is going on Indonesia. Indonesia, I beg you, grow up and be part of the modern world.
Head of the Sharia Agency Tengku Almujani said the public shaming of the couple would be a good lesson for local people. 'It would certainly be a humiliation if those undergoing the caning were our own children or grandchildren.'
No Tengku, it is you who has humiliated Indonesia and all of us in the eyes of any civilized person or nation. I hold you and your ilk beneath contempt.
Things are gradually changing toward this scenario. The radical fundamentalists rant and rave and push the villagers to do what they want and to accept their distorted world view, and the villagers just do it because they just want to live in peace and get on with their lives.
President Joko 'Jokowi' Widodo needs to revoke this law as it is nothing but shameful to use it at all.
What people do with each other out of affection is their own business and nobody else's.
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