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Salient. Victoria University Student Newspaper. Volume 36, Number 25. 3rd October 1973

Revolutionist: Don't Assume

Revolutionist: Don't Assume


I have promised myself to abstain from writing in the Salient anymore, but my friend Revolutionist gives me no other alternative but to break it. Since he accused me in public, it is therefore only fair that I should make my defense in the same manner.

First he accused me of denying the existence of communism. But if he cares to read my letter "Malaysia in Perspective" he will find that I make no such denial. In fact, if I may quote my statement on the matter: "I do not hesitate to admit that dissatisfied elements are present in our nation, just as the satisfied ones are at large." Surely such a statement cannot be catergorised as a denial of his and his mates existence. Secondly, he classified me as being "the member of the capitalist elite." Though I am honoured by his classification, I do not accept honorary status. I sincerely hope he won't ask for my income tax file because I have never been in need of one.

Thirdly he accused me of suppressing freedom of thought, which I must say is a wrong inference of my statement. All I ever said was that freedom of accepting ideologies "minus reality (of the situation) is at best crippled and at its worst the root of dissension". Surely that is not a sign of intolerance for individual thinking, and if I may be more explicit, such a statement is in fact a guideline to the proper and practical use of freedom. Fourthly, he accused me of studying in NZ for the sole purpose of acquiring more tricks of exploiting my fellow Malaysians. By assuming that, he is not only making wrong accusations but is also guilty of putting his mouth into my mind and thus depriving me of the very freedom which he accused me of infringing. Freedom to think for oneself. I sincerely hope that he and his kind in the future will abstain from further interference of that nature. Lastly, he accused me (which is groundless) of nursing dirty intentions of living in style at the expense of my fellow citizens.

Mr dear Revolutionist don't try to be God, because you are not endowed with prophetic power in knowing other people's aims and desires. If there is anybody who knows what I am going to do that would be me. I don't need your hindsight, and that I can assure you of. Unless I tell you to, I warn you not to make any more presumptuous statements about my future doings, and your revolutionary idea does not entitle you to direct my thoughts in such a manner, nor does it give you the right to make any wrong assumptions about my life.

Please, bear in mind that I do not and will not stop you from carrying your ideology into practice. If you think that it is the best that you can offer, by all means do it, you have my blessings. But I must remind you that you still have a long, long way to go. I do wish you the best of luck, and please give me a ring when you have arrived.

I am still your friend,

James Masing.