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Old 08-14-2012, 11:07 AM
 
Location: The western periphery of Terra Australis
24,683 posts, read 45,447,074 times
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How general is the dislike of America and Americans themselves?

Is it more a disdain for the American government, or do many Canadians seem to actually dislike Americans as individuals?

Of course a decent person will receive anyone as an individual, and I'm sure there are plenty of Canadians who do do this, but like anywhere you'll have ignorant folk who base their perceptions on stereotypes.etc.

Before You Flee to Canada, Can We Talk? (washingtonpost.com)

I do hear Canadians constantly compare themselves to 'the States' and try to make themselves look better. Is it really that tough for an American to live there as the above article suggests?
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Old 08-14-2012, 12:19 PM
 
Location: Hougary, Texberta
8,602 posts, read 11,096,185 times
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The article is pretty good, with the exception of her paranoia and being butt hurt any time someone says anything bad.

Two things;

i) Canadians compare themselves to the States constantly

ii) We have a dry sarcastic, self depricating humour like the UK, that some Americans don't get.

If you combine the two, you could be offended when no offence is meant.
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Old 08-14-2012, 12:46 PM
 
12,754 posts, read 14,106,494 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Trimac20 View Post
How general is the dislike of America and Americans themselves?

Is it more a disdain for the American government, or do many Canadians seem to actually dislike Americans as individuals?

Of course a decent person will receive anyone as an individual, and I'm sure there are plenty of Canadians who do do this, but like anywhere you'll have ignorant folk who base their perceptions on stereotypes.etc.

Before You Flee to Canada, Can We Talk? (washingtonpost.com)....
The article is eight years old for starters. And it does seem to this American that the author was very sensitive, perhaps as this was written just three years after 9/11 she was feeling the uneasiness and vulnerability that many felt then.
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Old 08-14-2012, 05:02 PM
 
455 posts, read 917,595 times
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Any american who decides to move to canada is going to be treated based on the person and lastly that they came from the states.

That articles was written during the height of the bush administration and the iraq war at a time when anti-bush feelings and in turn some anti-us government feelings were at their highest.

Overall the relationship between most canadians and americans are about as close as two national neighbors can get despite some sniping here and there depending on the political climate. I mean the two were famous for having the longest undefended border for a long time.

The thing that does bug canadians about americans occasionally is that while most american actually have a positive view of canadians they don't tend to know much about how important canada is in the us-canada relationship. Like it being it's biggest trading partner that the majority of it's imported gas actually comes from canada, canada's internal politics etc.
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Old 08-14-2012, 06:28 PM
 
Location: Toronto, ON
2,094 posts, read 1,461,873 times
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Wasn't born here by choice so why should I be proud to be Canadian, it's like being proud that you're a Roman Catholic. If anything I feel lucky...I'm sure many Americans / Brits / Aussies feel the same way.
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Old 08-15-2012, 08:00 AM
 
Location: Gatineau, Québec
21,960 posts, read 27,390,495 times
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A really good friend of mine is married to an American and they live in Ottawa. The American in question has been a Canadian citizen for a few years now.

He really likes it in it Canada - otherwise he would not have taken on citizenship of course.

That said, what he finds is not so much that people will say nasty things to his face about the U.S., it's more when people either don't know he is American or forget that he is, that they have discussions thought to be "among Canadians only" that the stronger anti-Americanism comes out. (The American in question is from a part of the U.S. where the accent is not very strong, and what he has as an accent has become more subtle with the years spent in Canada. He very easily passes for someone born and raised in Canada.)

All human groups have these "insider" discussions, where people speak more freely about what is on their minds because there is a perception that everyone listening is part of the precisely defined "us" that either a) shares the view or, at least b) won't harshly judge someone for these views because they've heard them many times before.
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Old 08-15-2012, 08:02 AM
 
Location: North Texas
24,006 posts, read 32,864,305 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mhundred View Post
The thing that does bug canadians about americans occasionally is that while most american actually have a positive view of canadians they don't tend to know much about how important canada is in the us-canada relationship. Like it being it's biggest trading partner that the majority of it's imported gas actually comes from canada, canada's internal politics etc.
I'm American and I find that annoying too.

I think a lot of Americans take Canada for granted and don't appreciate the truly unique relationship we have with our neighbors to the North; find me anywhere else on Earth with such a long, lightly-defended border where one nation has a majority of its population massed within 100 miles of said border. Can't.

I think Canada is an awesome neighbor. Canada is a fine country and Canadians have a great deal to be proud of. (I've tossed around the idea of moving to Canada for years and may eventually do so, if your lovely nation will have me. )

Overall I hear nothing but love for Canadians from my fellow Americans; hopefully you guys like us too.

Edited to add:

BTW I've just finished reading this article:

Before You Flee to Canada, Can We Talk? (washingtonpost.com)

I spent most of my 20s and my early 30s living in various assorted European countries and that could have been me writing that article, inserting other country names for Canada. My experiences in the UK were most like what the author was describing there. The subtle anti-Americanism in the UK during the Bush years was like death by 1,000 cuts...and it was the worst of the bunch by far. I didn't actually have many problems in Germany or France, and NONE in Poland. The Polish seemed to love us.

Last edited by BigDGeek; 08-15-2012 at 08:13 AM..
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Old 08-15-2012, 12:18 PM
 
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Not much different than kiwis attitudes towards Aussies and vice-versa.
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Old 08-15-2012, 01:27 PM
 
693 posts, read 818,706 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mhundred View Post
The thing that does bug canadians about americans occasionally is that while most american actually have a positive view of canadians they don't tend to know much about how important canada is in the us-canada relationship. Like it being it's biggest trading partner that the majority of it's imported gas actually comes from canada, canada's internal politics etc.
This. I have to agree.

I'm American, but from my own personal experiences and perceptions, I'd have to say that I think that the biggest thing that "bugs" Canadians about Americans is that Canadians (in a multitude of forms: individual people, government, media, etc.) are almost always comparing themselves to Americans and always measuring themselves up against them. While, on the other hand, the overwhelming majority of Americans really could not give a flying hoot about Canada or Canadians or what they think about the US. Americans just don't think about Canadians or draw these silly comparisons nearly as much as vice-versa. It's so one-sided that it's just a joke. Like other posters pointed out though, this is not to say at all that Americans don't like Canadians. That really couldn't be further from the truth. Most Americans have very positive sentiments towards our northern neighbors, it's just that we don't really bother with them or care for them too much, if that makes any sense lol.

We really lucked out though. I mean, could we have gotten better neighbors if we tried?
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Old 08-15-2012, 01:30 PM
 
18,326 posts, read 10,398,747 times
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Where is the mystery with this issue?

Understanding that we are bedmates with an animal ten times our size and which influences every aspect of our daily life, one could easily understand why Canadians mention Americans more often than vice-versa.

We must consider everything in our national relationship while Americans have been brought up to think of Canada as that socialist neighbour to our north. In their political dealings; Canada has and is still used as the "bad example" by political pundits south of the 49th.

Ever look at the map depicted on many of the national news stations down there? It magicly stops right on the border (nothing up there to concern us) whereas most if not all national news stations up here report the weather for the entire north american continent, cities and all.

It's a subliminal thing. Our cars and farm equipment that origionally began within our country have long since been purchased by foreign entities so one needs look further for national identity markers such as the Canadarm on the old shuttles whereas Americans are used to thinking in terms of everything originated within their country regardless if it had it's genesis in Canada or not.

History is often fudged to further complicate issues with everything from pioneering surveyors to wars being changed to suit pride from beneath through Hollywood or national lore. The Hollywood motive is obvious. A battle or conflict depicted as heroic emanting from a historical event reasonably fresh in memory but representative of a country other than the U.S. would hardly sell tickets down there.

Was there ever a movie made depicting the battle of Canadian infantry and Aussie artillary support which saw these vastly outnumbered Canadians hold onto critical hill positions at Kap Yong in the Korea conflict by repeatedly calling on the Aussies to shell their hilltop positions all through one night of fierce battle. Nope; no Hollywood offering from that one but instead movies like Hamburger Hill etc., are made to show how heroic it was for one artillary strike to be called onto your own postion. Those Aussies overheated their barrels and placed hundreds of rounds onto the Canadian positions. Even Ike admitted this was a feat recognizable in it's significance in stopping the communist hoards from going below the 38th parallel and awarded them a Unit Citation; the first foreign troops to be so honoured.

The anniversary of Dieppe has come and gone without much todo but the lessons learned from that debacle enabled the allies to fine tune and prevent a like disaster at Normandy.

Canadians are used to not being thought of in any real way by our neighbours to the south. We are used to having ourselves judged lacking in things such a "constitution", second amendment rights, even our universal health care gets a bashing. Recent posts on these very boards would have us all believing we have no guaranteed freedom of speech up here because of our "Anti-Hate" legislation.

Our country is often refered to a a "nanny state" by those below when in every single facet of life it could be argued very strenuously that the U.S., in every sense of the word "socialist" as used by them to describe us, is vastly more socialistic than Canada ever has been. All things from welfare, social security, medicare, medicaid to food stamps are forgotten when they presume to judge others.

Freedoms are another comparator often argued and the recent article of a farmer being arrested and jailed for collecting rain water on his own farm in the U.S. would be an example of the types of things that make us lift an eyebrow.

These are personal observations not intended to represent the collective Canadian thinking because they come from a 66 year old and obviously not pertinent to todays conditions.

Last edited by BruSan; 08-15-2012 at 01:38 PM..
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