Fri, 18 Jul 2003

'Litsus' denies freedom

All individuals are members of the human race first, members of an ethnic group or race second, and then members of a nation or ideology.

Oaths of loyalty, e.g., those demanded by any organization over the will of the people (called litsus in Indonesian), are in direct opposition to the universal human rights of an individual. It goes against all the tenets of democracy, i.e., the rights to individual freedom guaranteed by the constitution, especially speech.

They also reflect a sphere of fear within. The oppressive force of this demand is, in its nature, an Orwellian device used by militaristic or dictatorial regimes vis-a-vis Communism. Repressive paranoid leaders of dysfunctional governments utilize these methods of oppression and bondage in the name of nationalism, whereas in reality, civil distrust is increased and morale, decreased.

Such oppressive demands only foment that which they are trying to eradicate. Modern psychology and education, not feudal fear, are the mechanism of an advanced and emancipated society. It is therefore incumbent upon the people of a free and just nation to stand up and oppose any measures that erode civil liberties.

But by the same token, do not confuse the expression of these rights with the unlawful terrorism of dissension. Terrorism of a community by radical or rebellious groups should not be tolerated. After all, it is freedom to which we aspire.