Name change not in cards for city’s civic politicians
Not councillor, not city councillor, not alderwoman, alderperson or even super-duper-elected-official — Calgary’s civic politicians will remain “aldermen,” at least for the time being.
City council members once again decided against a change to their moniker yesterday — with a vote of six for the change and eight against it.
Journalist views, comments from experts and even a poetic twist took the discussion — the fourth time it’s been debated in 12 years — in a variety of directions.
Alder. Druh Farrell put on her etymologist hat in chambers, enlivening the debate with her view on the origins of the word “man,” but ultimately said the gender issue at the centre of the debate isn’t as simple as a name change.
“Will changing a name change everything?” Farrell questioned council. “And no, it’s not that simple.”
Farrell likened the elected-official name change to altering the name of the East Village to change people’s attitude towards it.
“Does changing the language change the way we think, or does the way we think change the way we use language,” she said.
While rookie Ald. Jim Stevenson supported the change, he added candor to the proceedings.
“The vast majority of people in this city could care less what we call each other or what we call ourselves — they’re concerned about whether we do a good job or not,” said Stevenson.