With all the conversation about the changes of the Canadian National Anthem and the reactions that followed. I would like to proposed that if we are going to be purest, we should sing the original O Canada, commissioned by Lieutenant Governor of Quebec Théodore Robitaille for the 1880 Saint-Jean-Baptiste Day ceremony; Calixa Lavallée composed the music, after which words were written by the poet and judge Sir Adolphe-Basile Routhier. Which is as follows:
Terre de nos aïeux,
Ton front est ceint de fleurons glorieux!
Car ton bras sait porter l'épée,
Il sait porter la croix!
Ton histoire est une épopée
Des plus brillants exploits.
Et ta valeur, de foi trempée,
Protégera nos foyers et nos droits.
Protégera nos foyers et nos droits.
Though, to be fair, we are a bilingual country and an english National Anthem was written 26 years later, so, we should probably uphold to the traditions of its writing. Wouldn't you agree? Though, as we look at history, Weir's original lyrics from 1908 contained no religious references and used the phrase "thou dost in us command" before they were changed by Weir in 1914 to read "in all thy sons command". So, wait! Are we changing the National Anthem, or are we reverting it back to the original?
I mean, this isn't the first time this conversation has come up. In the Throne Speech delivered by Governor General Michaëlle Jean on March 3, 2010, a plan to have parliament review the "original gender-neutral wording of the national anthem" was announced. However, three-quarters of Canadians polled after the speech objected to the proposal and, two days later, the prime minister's office announced that the Cabinet had decided not to restore the original lyrics.
To be honest, I am not sure I can see a good reason for us needing to change the National Anthem. But what I find more interesting is the reaction online to the news of the Canadian House of Commons passing the change officially and reacting in kind with disproval and some with outrage of how this being disrespectful of our history and heritage. Even though a simple 5 minute Google search would give a easy and brief education of our actual National Anthem and seeing that possibly the reasoning isn't so outrageous.
Now, the satire was intentional and the direct speak is as well. I don't mean to offend, but in a lot of ways, this is another example of the usual social media, jump on the band wagon without taking the time to be informed. The temptation to believe the narrative being weaved is a easy one, I know I have been tempted in the past to be a band wagon jumper, but my hope is that we would be wiser and shrewder then that. Would that be a fair thought? And possibly there really isn't that many people reacting and it is only those on my feed, but maybe this post can be one of those things that could get ahead of the curve, as I feel this is one of those topics that will probably get some traction. Maybe I am wrong.
But in conclusion. Does the Canadian National Anthem need to be changed? Who knows. Is the decision motivated by political correctness? Probably. Do you have to like the fact that it was changed? Absolutely not. You live in a free country and because of that, you are allowed to disagree, have your voice be heard and even protest. But, maybe, just maybe, if we do disagree, we should do so from a point of informed disagreement. But enough about what I think, I want to hear your thoughts?
Drake De Long-Farmer
Drake is passionate about seeing people thrive and come alive--to BELONG, wrestle with what they BELIEVE and BECOME people FULL OF LOVE, FUELLED BY FAITH & ADDICTED TO HOPE. Drake is an engaging speaker, writer and an equipper of leaders. He is a life learner and loves being challenged to grow further. One of his favourite things to do is spend a good amount of time at a good café or coffee shop with a good book or engaging conversation. To be able to share in someone else's journey and experience their story is always a pleasure and an honour. He currently serves as the Editor-In-Chief of boldcupofcoffee.com & the Executive Pastor at Gateway Alliance Church.
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