Lots of people love all what’s stupid, improper and naughty on TV. No account for tastes. Need not be your cup of tea, but then who would bother about their little guilty pleasures? Especially since from that perspective Indonesian programs are primarily respectable and very boring. A remedy for insomnia. Which impression perhaps has been caused by my lack of understanding.
However the self appointed Television watchdog group Remotivi and the official watchdog Indonesian Broadcasting Commission (KPI) fear Indonesian broadcasters have become a threat to public mental health. Apparently in their opinion it’s a bonfire of bad taste, filth and vulgarity. A series of incidents of unanticipated, occasional and inconceivable outbursts of foul language, upsetting controversial opinions and raunchy images. Gobal TV exposed their young audiences to a talk show moderated by Muslim preacher Ustad Solmed Mahmoed, shamelessly discussing “Islam and marital relations“. And to top that in Trans TV’s midnight show “Kakek-Kakek Narsis” ( Narcissistic Grandfathers) people could watch flirting men who occasionally even suggestively touched their female guests.
High alert! What should be done to save two hundred and forty million people from moral collapse?
Well the Council of Ulema’s came up with the solution. Just like they use to discriminate between allowed and forbidden food, they will declare some TV shows Haram and issue “Halal-certificates” for others. Which measure would fit the law which states program contents should be according to religious values.
The inevitable clerics once more plan to strike pre-emptively. Censorship, more censorship. They think they found a way to extinguish the last smouldering ambers of creativity, adventurousness, surprises, originality and excitement on TV.
The country will be saved.