I'm a Canadian because of the past. The great stories, the wonderful personalities, the huge sacrifices. It took a lot to create this country and endow it with promise. I'm a Canadian because of that. I see little but heartbreak and darkness in the years ahead. But for now I'm proud of what made it possible to be us.
On another forum someone gave this answer and all I could say was ditto to it:
My family and friends, hearing and singing "O Canada" and seeing the flag, tolerance, diversity, the sheer size of the country, separation of church and state, hockey, news reportage, national self-deprecation, the Charter of Rights, Coffee Crisps, the land itself, personal security and safety, the medical system, even as wobbly as it sometimes gets, environmental laws, Stanley Park fries and tartar sauce, annual national poetry contests, Blue Rodeo, national pride, the Sea to Sky Highway, donuts, sportsmanship, Knorr's Oxtail soup, a willing spirit globally, Montreal, sense of humor, balanced world view, Nestle's Mandarin & Chocolate ice cream, my family's ranch, Calgary, pot, sense of space, the CBC (radio and tv), the little water taxi that I took to work on Granville Island, Wreck Beach, the Loonie & Twoonie, reasoned debate, HP sauce, fries and gravy, the accent (I now admit I have one), Miss Vickies Salt & Vinegar chips, correct spelling of words like neighbourhood & humour, level and knowledge of world history, less self-conscious of nudity and sex...which reminds me, Sue Johannson!, peacekeeping, WASHrooms (no-one knows what I'm talking about down here when I ask where it is), labor laws, Chapters book store, how wired Canada is, Old Dutch pickle chips, a proper Caesar cocktail WITH Clamato juice, English & French on everything, clean cities, the Queen....
Whats Makes me a Canadian? Well Just having Canadian Values, a understanding of Cultures, living in Diversity and in a nation where Tolerance for Other Canadians of all backgrounds rule. Understanding our History and our Culture as being a mix of many cultures working for the same cause, for peace, Freedom and to have a Strong Country.
I was born in Canada. I'm told that's what makes me a Canadian.
Simpleton, that's what I was going to say.
Sorry, didn't mean to steal your line. Apparently great minds do think alike.-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Who should consider himself a Canadian ? I,do not think just becauase you were born in this wonderful land makes you a Canadian.It is only a biological "chance" that you were born here .Almost 50% of Canadian citizens were born in a different country and it was their "choice" to come to Canada and become a citizen of this country.
So here we have, a" chance " and a "choice".....So! Ask yourself a question ,"what have I done for my country , what have I given to my country without asking , demending a reward or a praise , what would you do if Canada was attacked by terrorists (like (9/11) what would you do ,would you defend you country knowing that you can loose you life (just like many of our brothers are loosing theirs , fighting the terrorists)at any time at any moment?What would you do besides sitting on your fat ass , staffing yourself with "Big Macks", that being the only way you know how to support the economy of your country while bitching at the government . WHAT THE HELL WOULD YOU DO ......"citizen"?
Well I love my country ,Canada has given me alot of oppotrtunity to live an "ultra"succsesful life and even though I have retired in China with my Chinese family ,if my country needs me I'll do anything to help it.
There is no me and Canada. We are one and the same. I would not be me without my country, I am tied to it and inseperable. You can take me out of the country but you can't take the country out of me. My life is what this great nation has given me and I'd give my life for it. I am Canadian.
Many things make me a Canadian. First, and most importantly, I was born here, of parents who were also born here, whose parents were also born here. That makes me Canadian by default, and I had nothing to do with that, it's just an accident of birth. Second, there was once a time when I had an opportunity to choose between staying in Canada and moving to the United States to take a job, and I chose to remain here. The U.S. was waging a war in Vietnam at the time, which pretty thoroughly nauseated me. I was single and childless with a brand new post-graduate degree that could have got me a job in the oil and mineral exploration business almost anywhere in the world, so I could have made the move with minimal disruption to my life, but on thinking it over I decided I just didn't want to live anywhere but in Canada. What I was seeing every day in the news made Canada look like a uniquely sane and civilized place to make a life, and I've never regretted the decision to stay here. And I still think Canada is a uniquely sane and civilized place. So does my son, who's 24 now. He recently faced the same choice, and he too chose to stay in Canada, for essentially the same reasons I did.
So, I'm Canadian by birth, heritage, and choice. And I've made a point of studying Canada's culture and history, both formally at university (I did an M.A. degree in Canadian political studies after my training in physics and geology) and on my own, and all my adult life it's been true that the more I learn about this country and other countries the better this one looks. There's some bias there of course, simply because I was born, educated, and acculturated here, so the place is comfortable, familiar, and I know my way around. I've travelled a fair bit, in Canada and other countries for both personal and professional reasons, and I can tell you this with certainty. If you are truly Canadian, and you spend some extended period of time in some other culture, working or holidaying, when the day comes that you're at the airport to catch the plane for home, if the sight of that stylized maple leaf on the tail of the Air Canada jet that pulls up to the gate to carry you home doesn't choke you up a little, some part of you is dead.
Well written, Dexter!
I do travel outside Canada, and when it's time to go back I have this feeling that all good is going to be finished now, and I have to go back to my little prison with streets and coffee shops, work and leisure times, fake smiles of people around and nothing that touches your soul. Here you get used to survive, because everyone is just for yourself. Here you get used to fight back, because those around you won't miss a moment to remind you that they are Canadians, and you are not. Well, it mostly means that they don't have anything except for the feeling of belonging, that's why they cling so much to it. All the intelligence left for other countries, and mostly in Southern direction. All the talents are in Hollywood or New York. They do call themselves proud Canadians, but it's just a trick to attract more attention by exposing yourself as being different....
Don't you see that to the south of the border buildings are taller, salaries are higher, cars are more expensive and people are just more pleasant and full-hearted?...