24October2017

Home Editorial REGIONAL HEAD ELECTION AND ISSUES ON ETHNICITY, RACE, AND RELIGION

REGIONAL HEAD ELECTION AND ISSUES ON ETHNICITY, RACE, AND RELIGION

Indonesian People’s Consultative Assembly (MPR) chairman Zulkifli Hasan some time ago said issues on race, ethnic origin, and religion are over. Whereas, it turns out that in some areas, especially ahead of regional head elections in Jakarta, they are still considered to be hot issues.

Actually, what has been conveyed by the Chairman of the Assembly should be a concern, because the issues in the local elections are quite vulnerable and are often used to divide the democratic atmosphere that Indonesian people have built.

By definition, racial issues are the views and actions undertaken based on the Identity that includes ethnicity, race, religion and inter-group elements. It can also be associated with the unfair service to someone for the reasons of those elements. The main point is that SARA or ethnic, religion and race are sensitive issues that should be avoided and should not be disputeted to maintain the unity of the nation of Indonesia. It is not justified to prioritize more on the interests of race, religion and ethnicity than that of the nation.

In the regional election case, the issues on race, ethnicity and religion are also prone to be utilized by the candidates to get more support. Especially when the candidates feel that their groups belong to the majority group in the community. The sentiment is very easily ignited.

Indeed, discrimination can be found anywhere. Both in developing and developed countries. This is due to the human tendency to discriminate others. When a person is treated unfairly because of race, class, gender, race, religion and belief, political orientation, physical condition, or other characteristics, it is called discrimination. An unappropriate action, but still happens.

Issues on ethnicity, race and religion has lately emerged as an issue which are considered to be  the cause of a various social unrest in Indonesia. Perhaps, it is because Indonesia is about to hold Simultatenous Regional Election 2017 next February. There are some prospective regional heads who use racial issues to gain votes. Naturally, every Indonesian must maintain the integrity of the nation together and avoid divisions because of racial issues.

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