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Staff Picks: Dialog 50 Tahun Merdeka

Name: Puan Siti Murshidah Binti Mat Riffin,
Position: Assistant Librarian, Digitisation and OCR Unit
Book: Dialog 50 Tahun Merdeka – Melayu Retak Seribu
Editor: Rahim Zain
Publisher: Gateway Publishing House Sdn Bhd Kuala Lumpur
Publication Year: 2008
Book Language: Bahasa Malaysia

Masanya sudah lama berlalu bilamana bangsa Melayu menjadi pilihan orang asing. Keturunan Arab, Cina, India, Turky, Inggeris, Jawa, Acheh dan bangsa-bangsa lain berbangga dengan nama Melayu. Orang tua mereka yang datang ke Tanah Melayu dan berkahwin dengan orang Melayu atau yang tinggal dalam masyarakat Melayu mahu dikenali sebagai orang Melayu. ‘Melayu’ adalah sama dengan ‘mulia’. Mereka memadam atau memendam darah keturunan mereka untuk dikenali sebagai orang Melayu. Atau ada yang mengubahkan kandungan dokumen Perakuan Beranak kerana mahu jadi orang Melayu. Itulah zaman Melayu ada maruah, Melayu laku, Melayu disanjung. Bahkan orang kafir yang mahu memeluk agama Islam dikatakan mahu masuk Melayu. Tetapi tanda-tanda kehilangan maruah dan kemuliaan orang Melayu sudah timbul kilaunya akibat perbuatan segelintir orang Melayu yang hilang pedoman.

Dialog 50 Tahun Merdeka – Melayu Retak Seribu dives into the many issues that the Malays are currently facing, fifty years after achieving Independence (at the time of publishing). The title alone gives away the author’s view of the condition of Malays; once strong, now with a thousand cracks. The author also expressed his hope for the Malays of the future generation, as well as for leaders to find creative means to solve these issues.

The opening chapter of the book illustrates how modern Malays are only a shadow of their former self. Many Malays nowadays feel proud that they are of Arabic or Western lineage, but then would call themselves Malays when the situation demands it so. Even TV networks would rather show programmes that highlights culture-mixing, rather than programmes that showcase the Malay identity. All because being a “pure Malay” is not glamorous. Though there is nothing wrong with showing cultural unity and harmony, the author felt that it implies the Malay culture does not make for a successful TV series.

Melayu Tipu Melayu; this topic of discussion really caught my attention as it is something that I agree with, especially in light of recent events when there are more and more cases of Malays scamming and taking advantage of their own family members and friends. Just as the author posits, Malays have faced this issue for decades and it does not look like it will stop anytime soon. And as long as this issue exist, Malays can never truly get back to their glory days.

One thing to note is that while there are many serious issues that the Malays need to sort out, the author believes that many of them can be overcome. Malays can prosper and once more live an era of greatness if there is mutual cooperation between the leaders and people. With professionalism, integrity, creative and critical thinking from the leaders, as well as a first-class mentality, and the spirit of wanting to change for the better from the people, nothing is impossible. The sky is the limit, as they say.

You can choose to agree or disagree with the author’s position, but there are many lessons that can be derived from this book. Though it might seem to focus a lot on the negatives, this book can also serve as a wake-up call to some. It is for this reason that the book is my Staff Pick for 2020.

Sepatutnya rakyat Malaysia yang sudah lima puluh tahun merdeka sudah faham banyak perkara mengenai Perlembagaan tanah air, terutama tentang hak istimewa orang Melayu. Sepatutnya rakyat Malaysia tidak perlu berkelahi mengenai perkara itu. Pemimpin-pemimpin Negara yang mahu membina Negara majmuk harus menerap pengertian yang positif terhadap peruntukan Perlembagaan. – page 239.

Yang dilucutkan dari milik mutlak orang Melayu ialah: 1) Kedudukan atau status serta kuasa orang Melayu dalam Negara sendiri. 2) Kedudukan dan keadaan berajakan Raja Melayu – seperti Brunei. 3) Kedudukan Raja Melayu sebagai pemerintah negeri Melayu. 4) Kehilangan pemerintahan mengikut undang-undang Islam bagi Negeri Melayu yang sebelum dijajah mempunyai undang-undang tersendiri yang berasakan hukum Islam. 5) Kehilangan qanun Negeri Melayu. 6) Kehilangan bumi Melayu secara mutlak. 7) Kehilangan hak anak watan wujud sebelum Inggeris mula menjajah. – page 241

Dialog 50 Tahun Merdeka: Melayu Retak Seribu is available at the Perdana Library. If you are interested in borrowing the book, please call us through this number, 03-88858961 (Library Counter).