Big Change Coming to Canadian National Anthem

Published February 1, 2018 at 7:19 pm

Anthony Urciuoli/ photo

If you went to grade school in Canada, you likely stood for — or even sang — the Canadian anthem every single morning.But when you’re in school, you don’t often realize what a patrotic and relevant symbol the anthem is for Canadians everywhere. 

After two years of debate, the Canadian national anthem has officially been changed for gender neutrality. The Senate has passed Bill-C-210, which alters O Canada by replacing “in all thy sons command” with “in all of us command” in the English version of the anthem.

O Canada has been the Canadian anthem since 1980, and several bills have come and gone trying to eliminate the gendered reference to “sons.” This is the first time a bill has passed.

Bill C-210 was initially a private member’s bill that was introduced by Liberal MP Mauril Belanger in 2016. As of January 31, 2018, the bill is still awaiting royal assent before it becomes law.

Belanger died a few months later, but the spirit of his efforts remains intact. When the bill was first introduced, many other senators applauded him for “tenacity,” “courage” and “strength.”

The change has received an abundance of support from many Canadians…

Despite pushback from some Canadian senators…

The original O Canada was written by Robert Stanley Weir in 1908. The original lyrics actually read “”thou dost in us command” until Weir adapted them in 1914 to read “in all thy sons command.”

Regardless, the anthem has now been stripped of gendered references, and here’s how it now reads!

O Canada!
Our home and native land!
True patriot love in all of us command.
With glowing hearts we see thee rise,
The True North strong and free!
From far and wide,
O Canada, we stand on guard for thee.
God keep our land glorious and free!
O Canada, we stand on guard for thee.
O Canada, we stand on guard for thee.

INsauga's Editorial Standards and Policies