Editorial Cartoon by Graeme MacKay, The Hamilton Spectator – Wednesday April 5, 2017
Don’t Let Politicians Rewrite National Anthems
Some members of the Senate are determined to stop Parliament from changing the words of the national anthem, with one senator deriding the late Liberal MP Mauril Bélanger’s proposed amendments to O Canada as “clunky, leaden and pedestrian.”
Bélanger, who passed away last summer after a battle with ALS, sought to make the anthem gender-neutral by removing the phrase “all thy sons command” and replacing it with “all of us command.”
The bill passed in the House of Commons largely along party lines, with all Liberal and NDP MPs voting in favour of the changes, while most Conservatives opposed. Some notable female Tory MPs, including Michelle Rempel and Lisa Raitt, backed Bélanger’s bill.
Nearly a year later, the bill is now in its last legislative phase — third reading in the Senate — awaiting a final vote. As per the Senate’s procedural policy, debate on the bill can be continually adjourned by critics, punting a vote on the matter to a later date. (Source: CBC News)
Meanwhile, after nearly three years of talks, the NHL announced Monday it will not participate in the 2018 Olympic Games in Pyeongchang, a decision that is turning out to be incredibly unpopular with many players.
“It’s crap. I don’t understand the decision,” said a clearly disgruntled Erik Karlsson to CBC Windsor.
The Swedish player and captain of the Ottawa Senators is among many high-profile players voicing discontent in the wake of the announcement.
One of the most outspoken against the decision has been another Swede — Henrik Lundqvist. The New York Rangers goaltender tweeted that “a huge opportunity to market the game at the biggest stage is wasted.”
Carey Price, who helped lead Team Canada to a gold medal at the Sochi Olympics in 2014, said it’s a particularly tough blow to the younger players.
“I feel like we’re short-changing some of the younger players that haven’t had that opportunity,” he said. “It’s tough to swallow for some of those kids, I’m sure. At a human level, this is a big worldwide event that the world takes part in and you know, we want to shine our light too.”
Marc Savard, a Canadian who is under contract with the New Jersey Devils, joked that tryouts for the team will be posted at local rinks.
Canada has long dominated the game, winning nine gold medals for men’s hockey since 1920 — including consecutive wins in 2010 and 2014.
This will mark the first time NHLers won’t participate in nearly 20 years. (Source: CBC)