Friday, 1 July 2016

Gender Neutral At 150

Today is Canada Day, as a country we are 149 years old. I can't believe that I will be around for the 150th anniversary next year. It is going to be big! I was in Grade 2 when we celebrated Canada's 125th anniversary, I remember the logo - I think I had a t-shirt with it.

If Bill C-210 passes its third reading and trip to The Senate we will have a change to our national anthem! It would make the English version gender neutral by replacing "thy sons" to "of us." The French version is very different, much more religious and violent.

Staying with the English version for now - I am surprised that it is moving to gender neutral lyrics before secular - since we will still be asking "God keep our land." I also think it is interesting in the Wiki article that Toronto City Council voted 12 to 7 (this was before amalgamation) to suggest a change to the Canadian Government. They wanted a change from "our home and native land" to "our home and cherished land" to better represent our large immigrant population. I like that change too! We should do all three at once - no "sons," no "God," and no "native."

I remember being part of Brownies or Girl Guides when a small movement towards religious differences was announced. I looked it up and in 1994, when I was 10, The World Association approved revisions to the Canadian Girl Guide promise and law. I remember the asterix section being added to our little printed cue cards:

I promise to do my best,
To be true to myself, my God/faith* and Canada;
I will help others,
And accept the Guiding Law.
* Choose the word God or the word faith according to your personal convictions.

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