The Canadian Parliament Wednesday voted to change the country’s national anthem to make its lyrics gender neutral. The move reportedly comes amid the new Liberal government's push toward inclusivity.
The proposed bill will reportedly change the English version of "O Canada" to remove the words “in all thy sons command” and replace them with “in all of us command." The changes have been passed in the House of Commons, which is controlled by the Liberals, but has to be approved by the appointed Senate.
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has made gender inclusivity a focus since he was elected last October. He also named an equal number of men and women to his 30-member cabinet.
“I think it’s really important as a very strong symbol of our commitment to gender equality in this country,” Patty Hajdu, the status of women minister, said before the vote, according to Reuters, adding the move was an important step toward ensuring inclusivity in Canada’s cultural symbols.
The national anthem was composed in 1880 and the original lyrics were in French. The English-language version was written in 1908, and was adopted as Canada’s official anthem in 1980.