"Zunar can draw whatever he wants, so long as it does not insult anyone. If the cartoonist draws things like old mcdonald or donald duck (sic) then go ahead, nobody cares. Just do not insult people."
- the Malaysian Inspector-General of Police was quoted for saying on Friday. Saturday Zunar announced that he would indeed draw Donald Duck and publish it today, creating great expectations on his drawn response:
|Zunar: the IGP (Chief of Police) told me to draw Donald Duck, December 5, 2016.|
The Inspector-General is as always part of the cartoon, this time wearing his own Donald Duck-mask for a mouth. In fact everyone is wearing one, with the prime minister right in front of us, while his wife is posing as Mickey Mouse. Her gigantic hair was made for those ears.
This is the society of drawing only niceties.
As Zunar put it: "Leader stole RM2.6 billion from the people and expect cartoonist to draw Donald Duck? You have no business to tell me what to draw"
On Friday the Inspector-General explained his Donald Duck-demand thus: "Let me put it to you. If a group of cartoonists decides to draw a cartoon on the Penang chief minister, with a ‘hidung senget’ (crooked nose), among other insulting things, would he (CM) allow me to stay quiet? No!"
Nor can we be quiet and let us be clear: Drawing a public person is not an "insult". That is baby talk. A cartoon is about the actions of said person. Noses of any kind are details to the whole, and focusing on the details by those, who do not wish their actions to be seen, are just a means of detracting attention from the issue being addressed.
Zunar is rigorous and clear-cut in addressing the actions of the Malaysian prime minister and his entourage.
Give them another nose and they are still amassing money away from those who need it the most. By focusing on noses, the Inspector-General only made the real issue all the more obvious.
All the while, the situation of Zunar is a serious worry and with him anyone, who discusses the society of which they are all part.
Every time action is taken against Zunar, the question is what may happen next. He is brave, acknowledging his personal fear, but feels morally bound to continue, as he answers when we ask him. He may face prison, he has just been detained by the police, a gang raided his exhibition, which gave the police the excuse to step in - we fear the stepping up of the aggression against his person.