Tuesday, June 2, 2009

symbols of politics?

In the Malaysian Insider, "Headscarves enter Indonesian polls"

JAKARTA, June 2 — The wearing of headscarves has emerged as a hot issue in Indonesia ahead of next month’s presidential election.

As parties gear up for the soft campaign which kicks off today, the campaign team for Vice-President Jusuf Kalla and his running mate, former general Wiranto, has published a booklet about the candidates’ wives being pious Muslims who don headscarves all the time.

This is in contrast to the wives of President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono and his vice-presidential candidate Boediono, both of whom do not wear head coverings.

Copies of the eight-page booklet, entitled Isteri Yang Shaleha Pasangan Pemimpin Masa Depan, or The Devout Wives Of Future Leaders, were distributed over the weekend, carrying the profiles of Musfidah Jusuf Kalla and Rugayah Wiranto with quotations from the Hadith or sayings of the Prophet Muhammad on Muslim women and their dressing.

Both Kalla and Wiranto have been travelling across the country, with their wives in tow, to garner support from the Muslim ground.

. . .

continued article at the linked title above

Other articles I have found on this subject, and the book about the candidates' wives, seem to suggest favour of the people being linked to the pious behaviour/dress of the men's wives. While the behaviour of wives certainly is a reflection of the outlooks and personal disposition of their husbands, I would hope that folks are not simply leaning toward a political leader because of outward appearance. But we all know that it happens.

1st photo caption: "Incumbent Vice President Jusuf Kalla (L) of Golkar, who is running for president, his spouse Mufida Jusuf Kalla (2nd-L), his running mate Wiranto of Hanura and his spouse Rugaiya Usman Wiranto (R) wave after registering for the next presidential election in Jakarta on May 16, 2009." from daylife.com

2nd photo caption: "Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono, left, and his wife Kristiani Yudhoyono, right, shows ink-stained finger after casting his ballot at a polling station Thursday, April 9, 2009, in Cibubur, south of Jakarta, Indonesia." AP photo from daylife.com
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