A man handcuffed in Geylang Bazaar, backdrop of a dendeng stall, and the whole community assumed that he was caught because he sold non-halal meat during Ramadan at a stall in Geylang Bazaar.
Ok fair enough, there were reports of stalls selling food items to the muslim crowd in the bazaar without a halal certificate. See our previous article below:
Rumours of the arrest were already circulating on WhatsApp before Rilek1Corner and All Singapore Stuff published the story.
Judging by the shares and the forwarded messages I received, the community fell hook, line and sinker for it, without even trying to find out if the arrests were true and the actual reasons behind the arrests
I bet MUIS lines were ringing off the hook with journalist seeking confirmation.
Fortunately, Labour MP Zainal Bin Sapari were quick to provide some form of clarity on the incident and brought the community back to their senses.
What makes this news so attractive to the community that they want to believe that it is true?
Are we being too sensitive just because it is the holy month of Ramadan?
How come everyone suddenly becomes a halal expert and investigator?
Why so defensive and quick to say that the other race (i.e Chinese) is deliberately being insensitive and manipulating the Muslim community with their business practices?
I have two possible reasons.
First, segments of the Malay community are already feeling insecure because the majority of stall owners are Chinese.
A sense of economic insecurity perhaps? A preconceived unhappiness and a sense of frustration that even during a Malay Muslim event like Bazaar Ramadan, the Chinese are still the key players and owners? These Chinese owners subsequently employ Malay / Muslim shopkeepers to man the stalls and run their daily operations.
Second, could this be a manifestation of the Tudung issue and a continuation of its sentiments?
The tudung issue is a hot button issue in the community but was never fully resolved.
See our article on it here:
The sense that the rights of the community are being unfairly suppressed lingers.
Why does it have to be like this?
They cannot even agree to disagree that they could be other explanations if a stall has no halal signs. Only their version of halal is correct, everything else is haram and therefore wrong.
Where is the resilience to news that divides us by playing on existing religious and racial fault lines?
You want to know how fake news spread and the most recent example of it?
Look no further, this is a classic example of it.
CNA reported details of the arrest earlier – illegal meat illegal workers
A spokesperson for the MOM said the raid at the bazaar was carried out in the afternoon and added that the suspects who were detained were also found to be working illegally in Singapore.