Body Language

The scanner in action at a Western airport. source: AFP


The western politicians are having bad time. The new project to place body scanners at the airport has received a very negative support from them. They try to rule out the elligibillity of the machine under the pretext of ” invasion of personal privacy”.


From this story, we can decipher lot of discourses that has surrounded it. The prime issue why the scanners need to be there in the first place would be about the threat of terorrism. 


It seems, the Western world has been brainswashed heavily with the word “terrorism”. Yet, they seem naive to understand the origin of the cause why terrorism happen. 


But this is not merely about terrorism. It has something to do with another form of element that worth to ponder about.



The another element is about morality. The politicians knew that the machine violates their personal morality, yet in the Western hemisphere, prostitution had long been legalized  just like how McDonad is selling its Big Mac for public consumption.


Brothels are being open everywhere as long as the demand can come in. In the same way, behind the scene, human traficking is being considered a legalized activity too as the demand is highly intertwined with the prostitution activity. A particular “close one-eyed” case.


Now, let us think deeply why do the politicians behave like this. Why they are flip-flopping their thoughts on this morality stuff?


It has something to do with their mode of thinking. Its all boil down upon their world view that has long being shaped by various mode of thinking through out the history of western civilization that, to borrow Prof. al-Attas words as always in the state of ‘becoming’ rather than ‘being’.


One of the most central problem is dualism in thinking. Perhaps due to the influences of Aristotelian mindset as well as Cartesian division between mind-body.


The results of this mindset creates this kind of mess. The dichotomy between society and individual, sacred and profane.


For the politicians, their personal morality must not be jeopardised by this scanner machine. But the society’s  morality can be nullified in the name of prostitution that nicely being packaged as an industry.


They called it as a sex industry just like what computer, or heavy machinery industry being defined in our economic world.


The logic behind this notion that carries the word industry is for rationalization purposes. By rationalizing the activity, people will view it as a legitimate subject of economic rather than a morality-based scenario. In a secularized-capitalistic society, morality has no decent place. For the sake of improving a country’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP), an immoral acitivty like prostitution can become an industry just like what happen in Amsterdam of Netherlands. A multi-billion industry. 


The power of language as a cognitive tool to rationalize day-to-day phenomena must not be look down. In the case about the scanner, the problem goes beyond the technicalities of the legitimacy of the act in terms of morality and economic matter but more upon the world view that has dominated the westerners for centuries.


If the Western world still could not seek to understand their root cause, they could be destroyed from the inside of their own comfort zone. This case just perfect to show and indicate the pervasiveness of chaotic (anti-thesis to Tauhidic) world view that the Western world has embraced since the era of Aristotle.


A very dangerous one indeed.


P/S: Maybe in future I will try to view more on this kind of problem under the lenses of Gramsci, Foucault and al-Attas by using their philosophical framework.