Jul 30, 2014

Scottie dogs in Glasgow games issue ...

Those cute Scottish terrier dogs leading the teams during Commonwealth Games opening ceremony is deemed 'shameful' and 'offensive' by some of our Malaysian politicians.

Flag bearer and Cyclist Fatehah Mustapa of Malaysia flies the flag at half mast during the Opening Ceremony for the Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games : Commonwealth Games Scottie dogs 'disrespectful to Muslims'
Jock the Scottie refusing to walk...

Some Malaysian politicians and religious leaders have attacked the use of Scottie dogs during the Glasgow Commonwealth Games opening ceremony, saying it was disrespectful to Muslims.
There were about 40 Scottie dogs used in the the opening ceremony in Glasgow last Wednesday to lead the contingent teams around Celtic Park.
The dogs, wearing tartan dog coats with the name of each team on them, had been widely praised on social media, with many people stating they thought they had "stolen the show". Hamish, who led out the Scotland team, received one of the biggest cheers of the night.
Judy Murray in her twitter: "Scottie dogs in tartan coats at CG opening ceremony. Barkingly brilliant."
However, not everyone can be pleased or impressed. Condemnations have came from some political and religious leaders in Malaysia that said using of dogs for Muslim countries was "disrespectful".
Many Muslims refuse to have direct contact with dogs, which are considered by some to be "unclean" in Islamic culture. 
Making matters worse was the fact that Jock, the Scottie who was supposed to lead out the Malaysian team, sat down and refused to move as soon as his coat was put on, meaning he had to be carried by the team representative.
"This is just so disrespectful to Malaysia and Muslims – especially as it happened during Ramadan. Muslims are not allowed to touch dogs, so the organizer should have been more aware and sensitive on this issue. It is hoped this incident can teach other Western countries to be more respectful in the future." one of the Malaysian politicians said.
the English team led out

I have expected something like this to crop up since watching those cuties lead the contingents out, knowing some narrow minded person somewhere would have something bad to say . about it. This is not uncommon here in Malaysia since they even deem our Malaysian Airlines stewardess uniforms too sexy, and even the normal school uniforms of the children, so why not the cute dogs.
Let me run through some points regarding dogs
*Most Muslim scholars agree that the saliva of a dog is ritually impure, and that contact with a dog's saliva requires one to wash seven times. This ruling comes from the hadith: The Prophet, peace be upon him, said: "If a dog licks the vessel of any one of you, let him throw away whatever was in it and wash it seven times." (Reported by Muslim)
*Many Muslims base the prohibition against keeping a dog in one's home, except for the case of working or service dogs, on these traditions: "Angels do not enter a house wherein there is a dog or an animate picture." (Reported by Bukhari)
*There are also stories in Islamic tradition that tell of people who were forgiven their past sins through the mercy they showed towards a dog. The Prophet, peace be upon him, said: "A prostitute was forgiven by Allah, because, passing by a panting dog near a well and seeing that the dog was about to die of thirst, she took off her shoe, and tying it with her head-cover she drew out some water for it. So, Allah forgave her because of that."
*The Prophet, peace be upon him, said: "A man felt very thirsty while he was on the way, there he came across a well. He went down the well, quenched his thirst and came out. Meanwhile he saw a dog panting and licking mud because of excessive thirst. He said to himself, "This dog is suffering from thirst as I did." So, he went down the well again and filled his shoe with water and watered it. Allah thanked him for that deed and forgave him. (Reported by Bukhari)
*In another point of Islamic history, the Muslim army came across a female dog and her puppies while on a march. The Prophet, peace be upon him, posted a soldier nearby her with the orders that the mother and puppies must not be disturbed.
*Based on these teachings, many people find that it is a matter of faith to be kind towards dogs, and that dogs can even be beneficial in the lives of human beings. Service animals, such as guide dogs or epilepsy dogs, are important companions to people with disability. Working animals, such as guard dogs, hunting or herding dogs are useful and hard-working animals who have earned their place at their owner's side.

*It is a fundamental tenet of Islam that everything is permissible, except those things that have been explicitly banned. Based on this, most Muslims would agree that it is permissible to have a dog for the purpose of security, hunting, farming, or service to the disabled.

*Many of the more open minded Muslims strike a middle ground about dogs - allowing them for the purposes listed, but ensuring that the animals have their own space which does not overlap with human living spaces. Many would ensure that the dog is kept outdoors as much as possible, and at the very least is not allowed in areas where Muslims in the home pray. For hygienic reasons, when an individual comes into contact with dog saliva, one needs to wash.
*We shouldn't let our misunderstandings about dogs lead us to neglect, mistreat, or harm them, unlike some muslims here in Malaysia that go as far as to shoot a dog with a bow and arrow . The Quran describes pious people who had a dog living among them, and dogs are loyal and intelligent creatures that make excellent work and service animals. One should take care not to come into contact with the dog's saliva, and to keep its living area clean and away from any areas used for prayer.

*In Malaysia, most Muslims do not keep dogs as pets. So their only exposure to dogs may be of the dogs that wander the streets. These people develop a natural fear of them, especially when in their mentality dogs are considered unclean to them. 

*Many Muslims who seem to "hate" dogs are really, therefore, simply afraid of them. They may make excuses ("I'm allergic") or emphasize the religious "uncleanliness" of dogs simply in order to avoid interacting with them.

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