These past several years there has been a rising trend of Indonesian Women who married Westerners, live abroad, and become YouTubers. This article is trying to highlight and explain this social phenomenon to raise public awareness especially the Indonesians.
This article will follow closely the lives of two Indonesian women YouTubers who live in France, where I had the opportunity to communicate with them on several occasions through their YouTube videos.
For Indonesian women who get the chance to marry Westerners (here the general definition of Westerner is white), it is a dream come true for some Indonesian women, because coming from a country that is rich in natural resources but made poor and sick by the West’s centuries of plundering, raping and killing, it means an upgrade in social-economic status and a way out from a country ravaged by political and social upheaval especially since the West toppled President Sukarno and made Dictator Suharto President. For more information about Indonesia, you can find great resources on the renowned journalist and filmmaker John Pilger’s website. We have several Presidents after Suharto but almost all are the West’s puppets. Our government is put there not to serve the Indonesian people but to work for the West so the West can maintain their colonization and pillaging.
The West who rape and pillage Indonesia is mainly the US, UK, Australia, and France. There are other countries as well who pillage Indonesia who are allies of the West.
Some of the Indonesian women who marry Westerners come from the villages and they are poor and usually uneducated. But many come from the cities and are educated such as these two Indonesian women YouTubers who sadly even though educated are ignorant and whom we are going to discuss in-depth here.
For the record, I am not against any Indonesian woman having a relationship or marrying a Westerner, even if the man comes from a country that colonizes and plunders Indonesia. But it doesn’t give any Indonesian or any Asian woman excuse to be ignorant about history and current world affairs. With the internet, you can search, read, and learn about so many things.
These two Indonesian women on several occasions have shown ignorance, arrogance, hostility to fellow Indonesian citizens who visited their YouTube channels and left comments on their videos. Anyone can make a YouTube channel and self-appointed himself/herself as an influencer and expert on any subject but that doesn’t make anyone or guarantee one as truly the expert, the all-knowing, and the righteous one.
In a “liberated stardom” market such as YouTube and other social media platforms where anyone can make himself/herself a “star”, some kind of audience’s discretion is needed. Just like in any media, everything has to be taken with a grain of salt and always with critical independent thinking unless if you want to become a sheep follower.
The sad reality is, these YouTubers not only become the self-proclaimed righteous and arrogant influencers but they abuse their audience out of these feelings of superiority and star status that come from being a YouTuber. Unfortunately, these YouTubers have cult followers. Well, what do you expect, idiot follows idiot. These useful idiots also dedicate themselves as these YouTubers’ attack dogs.
The rising trend of Indonesian women who married Westerners and become YouTubers begs the question why:
- Is it because White Male is considered superior to other males from different races and nationalities?
- Is marrying Westerner perceived to be a successful endeavor or a dream come true by Indonesian women in general? Hence the fascination and the immediate success of Indonesian YouTubers who marry “bule” (the Indonesian word for Westerner)?
If those are the case:
- Why do we put a higher value on white people and simultaneously perpetuating White Supremacy?
- Why can’t we be successful and independent on our own, regardless of the skin color of the man we marry and regardless of whether we are married or not?
My success shouldn’t be based on the man I marry, neither on his skin color nor on his wealth. I make my own success to my definition of success. I think that marriage should be based on love and compatibility. Marriage is not a business deal or arrangement.
I remember being taught by my elementary school (it’s the equivalent of ecole primaire in France) teacher about when you come to a new place with a different set of culture and values, that we need to respect that habitants’ different culture and values. But she also said to drop the bad culture or value and only adopt the good culture or value of that new region or country. I was shocked to see that these 2 Indonesian YouTubers have lost their Indonesian good culture and values which are friendly, humble, welcoming, smiley, and instead shown rudeness, arrogance, and aggressiveness which is the reputation of the French people and the country they are currently living in. In addition, these two Indonesian influencers called me a hater, that I am full of hate without any justification along with other mockery and personal attacks done by them and their cult followers.
In a particular debate with Madam Feronica Joubert about laicite (secularism), freedom of speech, and islamophobia in France, she called me a hater with a heart filled with hate, when it is her who doesn’t care about other people’s sufferings when I said that there is no freedom of speech in France and invited her to validate my opinion for example by protesting for the freedom of the Palestinian people. She defends Samuel Paty, while I don’t think that what Samuel Paty has done is right and he doesn’t deserve Legion d’Honneur award. But this doesn’t mean I defend the murderer. Murdering someone for what someone says is wrong. Two wrongs don’t make a right.
My opinion is that not only there is no freedom of expression in France (double standard and full of hypocrisy), but France also has a rampant racism and islamophobia issue. For Feronica, there is no Islamophobia in France and France upholds freedom of expression. Which is proven wrong by so many events that were not covered by the mainstream media. A few days ago Macron sued a man because he depicted Macron as Hitler for Macron’s health pass policy. The man responded by saying that when Charlie Hebdo made fun of Prophet Mohammed it is considered a satire, but when he portrayed Macron as Hitler, it is blasphemy and not a satire. This is another confirmation that freedom of expression in France is a double standard, when minority or opposition is mocked it is satire, but not when it is done to the majority or those in power.
I also mentioned that Total, the French oil corporation burned Indonesian forests for palm oil plantations. I also said that France still colonizes and pillages countries in Africa. She ignored all of these facts I presented to her, shown no respect and utter lack of humanity for others including her fellow citizens. But ridiculously, I am the one who is called a hater. She told me if I’m not happy with France, I should shut up or get out of France.
As a tax resident of France, I’m entitled to my opinion and to express that in the public domain. She has published her videos giving her opinions in the public domain. As such she should expect to receive opinions and comments from people who see her video.
Those comments and opinions should, like the video be open to debate. Trying to shut down that debate is an attempt to suppress freedom of expression.
I understand that we don’t always get the right information or the truth on any subject, but as a public personality owning a YouTube channel, when she discusses politics and social issues if the visitor to her YouTube video gives different views, then maybe she can at least discuss or even go into a debate to defend her ideas. But instead, she was rude and directly resorted to personal attacks and insult which showed that she has no argument to make.
If Feronica Joubert and Mifta Bronchard can’t handle any comment or criticism then they shouldn’t become YouTubers or should make their videos on YouTube private. As long as they put their videos in public anyone has the right to comment on them. Another solution will be to not talk about the subject she doesn’t master or otherwise she accepts input or critic. Being a YouTuber doesn’t give anyone the right to be rude, mean, nasty, and abusive to the visitors of their channels who help them earn money through the monetization of their YouTube videos.
Being married to a French man doesn’t mean that a woman should blindly defend France and its crimes against humanity. Maybe Feronica Joubert can explain her stand to the Yemeni children dying in excruciating painful starvation because of the bombs and other weapons sold by France to Saudi Arabia who created the humanitarian crisis in Yemen. She should also explain to the Syrians whose families died from the bombs dropped by France, UK, and US. She could also help explain to her fellow Indonesians who were suffering from difficulty of breathing and severe lung problems because of the forest fires from Total’s burning of Indonesian forest for palm oil. I also like her to defend her stand that always pro-France for the destruction of Libya that used to be a prosperous country in Africa and now become a slave market where women and children are trafficked as slaves. These are just a few of the numerous French war crimes past and present.
As an Indonesian, I like her to explain to me and the Indonesian people in general why the young generation of Indonesians are poor. Partly because it’s people like her who help the West in the destruction of their own country by being ignorant and defending the pillager. She promulgates a bad image of Indonesian people especially Indonesian women by enforcing the West’s stereotypes of Asian women as weak, docile, submissive, and servile. Indonesian people like Feronica Joubert and Mifta Bronchard are the reasons why I have difficulty when discussing with foreigners to defend the dignity of the country and they say that the situation of Indonesia (being pillaged, colonized and poor despite being a very rich country of natural resources) is the result of our willingness to be colonized and pillaged by the West. They say it is our fault that we don’t rise and fight for our freedom.
Claiming to love her country Indonesia, but doesn’t care about the suffering of her nation and I’m sure she doesn’t care about these millennials portrayed by The Jakarta Post’s reportage “Underprivileged millennials: being young, poor in Jakarta” whose lives could be not far off from Feronica’s or Mifta’s if they don’t manage to get out from Indonesia. But they don’t care as they are now living overseas, and for them, their pasts are just history. Now they can flaunt their “wealth” and “higher” social status to their fellow Indonesians back home, showing off how successful they are married to Westerners and living in France and be arrogant, selfish, heartless and ignorant. But hey, still it’s me who is called the hater and brutally attacked for voicing my views and opinions.
Both Mifta and Feronica are the perfect embodiment of the proverb “You can take the girl out of the village, but you can’t take the village out of the girl.” They also fit perfectly the Indonesian adage “Kacang lupa kulitnya” or “Nut forgets its shell.” They tarnish the image of Indonesian people especially those living overseas as foreigners might think their characters represent the Indonesian people in general.
This article doesn’t mean that I deny the reality that racism and discrimination also happen in my home country Indonesia. Racism and discrimination are simply wrong.
I think being an influencer comes with moral responsibility. First, say the truth, stop spreading disinformation or propaganda. Second, be kind and humble. Third, try to be a responsible influencer who contributes to making the world a better place. I don’t like exposing people, but sometimes I think some people do need to be called out and learn some humility as they have been out of line and their behaviors unacceptable.
It is sad to see so many bad influencers when they are in the position to make a change. Instead, they move us backward and become a hindrance to those who want to move society forward.