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Old Posted Dec 24, 2019, 6:13 AM
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Nouvellecosse Nouvellecosse is offline
Volatile Pacivist
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: Nova Scotia
Posts: 6,578
For me, the main things I wish we had aren't things that would differentiate ourselves from the US by having; they're things that currently differentiate us in a negative way by lacking. For instance, a car-brand or other high visibility consumer product maker or seller associated solely with Canada (regardless of where it's owned or the products are made which are separate issues from the branding), or having a home-grown and based head of state which was recently discussed in another thread.

The US presidency as an office and institution are entirely of US making, whereas ours is based in and associated with somewhere else. When people globally talk about the queen, it's in terms of the queen of England or the British royals, and any other country is only raised as a technicality or afterthought. As silly as it sounds, I've actually heard people try to argue that keeping a foreign head of state (not legally foreign, but functionally foreign since they're not from here and have never lived here) makes us "unique" despite literally having the same head of state as several other countries including not only the UK but also Australia, NZ and others LOL! Even if it did make us unique, it's like a singer arguing that he's unique among his peers because they all write their own music whereas he only does covers. Umm... Congratulations?

I think the US national identity "layer" as someone previously described it, is closely connected to this to the point that such an identity would be far more difficult if not impossible were the country's structure and institutions not homegrown and instead merely offshoots of somewhere else. That, and unlike Australia, there's really no major geographic region that is totally ours and not shared with the US. We have arctic but the US also has Alaska. We have the Rockies but so do they. Ditto the prairies, great lakes, Pacific and Atlantic coasts, etc. Without significant isolation in terms of time and geography, the landscape and legal/political structures are the only things left that would spawn the kind of distinctiveness that some people people crave. I guess if I had to choose one thing to have that makes us unique from the US it would be a totally unique region. But as I said, generally we're more negatively unique by lacking things than if we had them.
"The reasonable man adapts himself to the world; the unreasonable one persists in trying to adapt the world to himself. Therefore all progress depends on the unreasonable man." - George Bernard Shaw
Don't ask people not to debate a topic. Just stop making debatable assertions. Problem solved.
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