on Monday, 4 August 2003
Anyone else who read the news article "National anthem to be rearranged" published by the Star on July 31 felt as disgusted as I was? (Pelita Negara's opinion) There I was shaking my head and wondering what in the world those people are doing. Don't they have anything else to do? Don't they realise that all those songs that are being played over national television are horrible? None of the new songs could even come close to match the beauty and now classic 'Setia' (Loyalty). And here they are, trying to change our national anthem for the second time. Anyone heard of another country who changes (read: downgrade) their national anthems once every 10 years or so? Why not change the flag, our Rukun Negara, and our state names since we're at it.

A national anthem is not simply a song - it is the song that unites us all as a people, a nation. It should be a solemn and serious affair, not some marching song (currently), or a modern upbeat rhyme (probable new version). I remember back in primary days and early secondary, during assemblies, people would stand still and sing when the national anthem is played. I still remember feeling proud and patriotic singing it, especially when it was broacast at the end of transmission at around 12 mn or 1 am or so each day. I remember being impressed at the majestic song, and awe at its deep strength. When the change was effected, it was no longer deep and soulful, just another melody to be sung during assemblies, and pretty soon, only the headmaster and the prefects were singing it, and trying to cow the rest of us into joining in.

I really hope someone in authority would really stand up to this and force a change back to when it was first sung publicly during our independence. Then, and only then, would it be a national anthem that I will be truly proud to call our own.