O Canada Looking to Go Gender-Neutral

'In all thy sons command' no more if bill passes Parliament
By Polly Davis Doig,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 5, 2016 7:09 AM CDT
O Canada Looking to Go Gender-Neutral
A large Canadian flag is held up by fans before Canada and Mexico play a FIFA World Cup qualifying soccer match in Vancouver, British Columbia, on Friday, March 25, 2016.   (Darryl Dyck/The Canadian Press via AP)

Canada is about to give its national anthem a minor tweak aimed at gender neutrality, reports USA Today, with a bill in support of the change wending its way through Parliament and looking likely to become law by summer or fall. The proposed change to O Canada: Making the line "in all thy sons command" read instead "in all of us command." The changed line would actually revert back closer to what the line was before it got a World War I-era tweak aimed at stoking soldiers' patriotism; the original line was "Our home, our native land, True patriot love thou dost in us command." "We are in 2016. The Canadian population will understand why we want to make the change," said a New Democrat MP during the debate. "It is not a big change, and there will not be a big difference in the national anthem, but the difference is significant for women all across Canada."

Though the measure has passed two readings in Parliament convincingly, it has its staunch detractors. Said one Conservative MP during debate, per the National Post: "It is tragic that this is being done in a fashion where Canadians are being shut out. Their national anthem is being changed. They have been singing it for decades, millions of Canadians. It belongs to them, it is not a plaything of us." (Read more O Canada stories.)

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