The new law is simply morality policing aimed at suppressing free speech, civil liberties, religious freedom, and legitimate criticism. Not only does it disproportionately affect women, the LGBTQ community, and ethnic minorities in the country, the new criminal code severely dents Indonesia’s image as a tourism and investment destination.
Indonesia is a multicultural and multi-ethnic country. The government has done its best to accommodate all interests. For instance, the law maintains that abortion is a crime but adds exceptions for women with life-threatening medical conditions and in cases of rape. Gay sex is also still legal. Indonesia's attempt to break away from its colonial living legacy needs to be celebrated, not outrightly dismissed.