MPs sang the gender-neutral version of “O Canada” in the House of Commons after they voted overwhelming to bring Canada’s national anthem closer to the version sung 100 years ago.
On June 15, the House voted 225-74 in support of Bill C-210, which was brought forward by Liberal MP Mauril Bélanger.The bill seeks to change the words “in all thy sons command,” first adopted in 1914, to “in all of us command.” The lyric used previously had been “thou dost in us command.”
Bélanger, who has ALS, was present for the vote.The bill now goes to the Senate for debate and committee study.The change is not expected to be formally announced until the fall.
Changing the two words was opposed by a majority of Conservative MPs, although MPs Michelle Rempel and Candice Bergen voted in favour of C-210. Other bids to change the words in 2002 by Senator Vivienne Poy (Lib.), Canada’s first senator of Chinese descent, were unsuccessful.In 2010, Stephen Harper’s Conservatives faced a backlash after announcing their intention to change the lyric to “in all of us command.”