Wed, 07 May 2003

`Inul has nothing to do with rape'

One of the reasons behind the call to ban dangdut singer Inul Daratista is that her sensual dancing could supposedly encourage rape. This charge immediately prompted protests from women activists who underline that Inul should not be blamed for such crime. Several people interviewed by The Jakarta Post said that rape have nothing to do with Inul, even though one man claimed that watching Inul dance had prompted him to rape someone.

Sam, not his real name, 34, is a itinerate satay vendor. He is single and lives in Kebon Pala, Central Jakarta:

I admit that in a way Inul's hip movements is so alluring that watching her sometimes arouses me big time. Those who have spouses to meet their sexual desires are content.

I'm single, so when the urge is too great, I have to find a way to meet my sexual desires. Well, frankly I could wander around the railway station and pick up cheap prostitutes. But the thought to rape someone has never occurred to me. I have more sense than that.

So, I partly agree with those who protest against Inul. At least, the protest is true based on religious teachings.

However, this does not mean that someone has the right to ban or judge what is haram or against religious principles. Inul is a singer and entertainer, which isn't involved with religion. The criticism is too much, I guess.

Apart from that, I like dangdut music very much. It is the music of poor people. It is very entertaining for me after working hard all day. It releases the tensions.

Thus, I agree that Inul should go ahead with her performances. Nevertheless, it might be better if she toned down her dance movements or otherwise she could cause more public controversy.

Rani, 21, is a final-year student majoring in accounting at Trisakti University in West Jakarta. She is a resident of Salemba, Central Jakarta:

Our nation can be very hypocritical in many ways, as in the case of Inul.

She is a real entertainer, dancer and singer. The matter is about entertainment, so talking about religion is out of context.

In the case of (dangdut) king Rhoma Irama's rude criticism of Inul, I just wonder what gives him the right to say anything. He is not God.

Obscenity is not an absolute matter. It greatly depends on the mind and heart of the people who perceive a certain thing, including Inul.

I, myself appreciate Inul with her gyrating hip movements as one of her many talents. It's normal, as everybody has a certain kind of talent. We should be aware that we are no longer a primitive nation.

I would rather use my common sense and positive thinking to respond to the Inul controversy. Such dancing is very common in the modern era.

Previously I did not like dangdut. But now I have come to like it due to the Inul controversy. Somehow, I admit that Inul's performances motivates me to be more energetic.

It is also too much to relate the raunchy performance of Inul with the increase of rape and morality. Everybody knows that rape existed long before Inul gained popularity.

Lilik, 35, is a housewife who resides in Total Persada housing complex in Tangerang, Banten, with her husband. She is a former waitress:

Honestly, I don't think Inul's "drilling" dance is vulgar. In my opinion, it's a normal dance.

I just wonder why Inul got such harsh public criticism, while in fact, there are other dancers who perform more raunchy dancing in accompaniment to dangdut music.

In my opinion, vulgarity depends greatly on the individual. A person with a dirty mind doesn't need gyrating hips to think vulgar thoughts and be stimulated.

I completely disagree with people who say that Inul's performance causes rape due to men's uncontrollable sexual desires after watching her. It is too much, since rape has been around long before Inul. She does not deserve the blame.

It is unreasonable to use religious principles to judge Inul. Entertainment is very different from religion.

I will keep watching Inul on television. I enjoy dangdut music and her sensual dance.

-- Leo Wahyudi S