Canada drops plans for politically correct anthem

OTTAWA, March 6 (Reuters) - Don't mess with a century-old tradition even if it is sexist, Canadians told the Conservative government this week, forcing Ottawa to scrap plans to make the country's national anthem gender-neutral.

The government tucked the idea into a major policy speech on Tuesday and by Friday the public outcry was so strong Prime Minister Stephen Harper backtracked.

“We offered to hear from Canadians on this issue and they have already spoken loud and clear,” said Dimitri Soudas, Harper's spokesman.

“They overwhelmingly do not want to open the issue. The government will not proceed any further to change our national anthem,” he said.

For nearly 100 years, the anthem has included the line, “True patriot love in all thy sons' command.” Harper wanted to start a public discussion on whether to change the wording in a way that would not exclude the nation's daughters. He took the intiative on the advice of a female senator, according to National Post columnist Don Martin.

The opposition Liberals called it a gimmick proving the Conservatives were not serious about women's rights.

Complaints from irked citizens poured in to radio and television shows, invoking the sanctity of national symbols and tradition. Many said the timing was particularly unfortunate, coming the week the Vancouver Winter Olympics ended.

Canadians took home a record 14 gold medals during the Games, and the country heard the anthemn repeatedly during flag-raising ceremonies for the winners.

Top to the page  |  E-mail  |  views[1]
SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend
Other International Articles
People power can make peace between India and Pakistan
Which way Iraq after critical election
It's definitive: An asteroid wiped out the dinosaurs
Arab women caught between extremes
Does India deserve MF Husain, its Picasso?
Oscar producers promise fast and fierce Oscars
Harrelson, Mo'Nique win early Spirit Awards
Indian tribes fight mining firm in real-life Avatar
Bing blocks online sex searches in Middle East: study
Car bomb rocks Shi'ite holy city before Iraq poll
US vows bid to halt Armenian genocide measure
Gates concerned about Blackwater's conduct-Pentagon
Six-year-old in Philippines saves baby from fire
British PM under fire for Iraq war defence
Fears spread as aftershocks rattle Chile
Canada drops plans for politically correct anthem



Reproduction of articles permitted when used without any alterations to contents and a link to the source page.
© Copyright 2010 | Wijeya Newspapers Ltd.Colombo. Sri Lanka. All Rights Reserved.| Site best viewed in IE ver 6.0 @ 1024 x 768 resolution