Canada - what makes Canada great

Gun control is regulated. Basically if you want to own a hunting rifle you have to take a non-restricted gun course. Get a licence and you are done. The same is true for handguns but it is a restricted gun course. There are gun storage laws. You can’t just get a gun and keep it next to your bed, it has to be locked and unloaded at all times. Transporting of restricted firearms can only be between your home and the firing range. There is more to it, but that is the basics.

I love Canada because I live in a major city, take a train into work that is run off of wind power, and on a clear day I can see the Rockies from my house.

I don’t have to lock my doors during the day. In fact one summer I lived in a brutally hot small town and the house has no air conditioning. My roommate and I left the windows (and sometimes the door) open all day. Even when we were not home.

I had a baby this summer. For the delivery I had a private room (standard practice) with my own bathroom and shower. I also splurged and got a private room for recovery and the grand total was $40. I had to pay for the recovery room. My daughter was born with hip dysplasia and had to wear a harness. She had x-rays done of her hips before she was even alive for one whole day, and two sets of ultrasounds before we could stop puttering in the harness. Grand total $0.

I have driven across the country a few times, and every single day of the drive I was amazed by how beautiful and diverse this place is.

Ludy sealed the deal! of course since there is sure to be a huge PITA process involved in becoming a Canadian (I must be immature, but when I say Canadian, I think of the Ren and Stimpy episode!) Athena wins on practicality and outdoorsy-ness! Grab the dogs, the man, the canoe, and look out UP, cause the Otters want yur clear running streams! (only for frolicking in of course!)

I think that one of the most striking cross-border differences on certain issues is the way that Constitutional issues muddy things in the US and emotionalize the debate beyond rationality.

It’s much rarer for gun owners to object to common-sense gun control issues, here. Similarly, it’s only a tiny minority that can find it in their hearts to object against laws against advocating genocide & whatnot.

If an issue comes close to the 1st or 2nd amendments down South, there tends to be a lot of hysteria and slippery-slopism, because there’s an almost religious feeling about the Constitution. Up here, the argument is a little more balanced.

For example, we have legislation intended to address circumstances similar to the Rwandan genocide here, and I’ve often heard this criticized as a violation of free speech, as though the public interest is better served if groups like the RTLM are allowed to diseminate their views unmolested, and that it’s only appropriate for the law to intervene once the machetes have actually been picked up. This is a huge cultural difference, in my opinion.

We actually have a clear running stream in our backyard, and yes, we do frolic in it, in the summer at least.

In the winter, we frolic from the sauna to the snowbank. And sometimes to the vodka bar that Mr. Athena builds out of snow on our deck :smiley:

aaahhh frolic! The frolicking you got going on sounds divine!

I am in Iowa (hangs head in shame) and you do not frolic in our rivers/streams unless you want to take a bleach bath when you get home. Pretty yucky stuff down here, comes from all that agricultural run-off, I believe. Hubby canoed in WI (Kickapoo River) last year with his buddies and talked on and on about how clear the water was. (soo jealous!)

LM what you describe sounds pretty nice too! seems like the debates here are so shrill and no one is willing to give even an inch of ground.

So far, while I definitely need to be fair to my own country and give WI/MN/MI a try; Canada sounds like an awfully cool place. A chance to let my inner hippie/liberal fly free!

Uh, no. The sex stuff is the minor stuff, there and here. The real corrupting force in politics involves abuse of power and money, and it seems that your system isn’t immune to either.

The sponsorship scandal wasn’t a minor scandal, some high ranking politicians and bureaucrats went to jail, Paul Martin lost control of the Liberals and the Conservatives won power. That’s pretty big by consequences alone.

There are many things in Canada that I’m proud of, but I would say first and foremost, I’m proud of our culture, in all its bizarre, contradictory glory.

I love it that our two best jazz guitarists started out doing country music in Winnipeg.

I love it that the Group of Seven includes ten painters, and Tom Thomson, arguably the most famous painter associated with them, isn’t actually a member.

I love it that our comedy shows have a now established tradition of punking our politicians, right up to the Prime Minister.

I love it that our country’s history is full of nuggets like Sir John A. MacDonald’s drunken filibuster on the floor of House of Commons or the fact that John Graves Simcoe, Upper Canada’s first Liuetenant Governor, passed legislation in 1793 that allowed for the gradual abolition of slavery and yet, it remains an underexplored story to most of the country’s population.

I love it that our best known popular historian demonstrated the best way to roll a joint on national television.

I love it that our Prime Minister grabbed a pesky demonstrator by the neck (thus giving the world the term “A Shawinigan handshake”.) but when someone broke into the Prime Minister’s residence, it was his wife who went downstairs to investigate, armed with only an Inuit sculpture.

I love it that for the last few World Cups, there has been an established community in Toronto for every country competing, and that that community parades the streets in joy and pride for every game.

I love it that Toronto was chosen for the World Pride day in 2014 and the Pan American games in 2015.

I could go on, and probably will, but there is much to love about Canada…

YouTube link. (God bless the CBC.)

Not to mention getting politicians to go skinny dipping on national TV… well, one politician at least.

The biggest difference between Canada and the US is the sheer amount of untouched and unspoiled nature. And it is not just the far north that is empty. You can easily drive a half hour out of a place like Calgary - a city of a million people - and literally be in the middle of nowhere! Ive driven across both the US and Canada and this is the single most striking difference. Sure, places like southern Utah are pretty and fairly unpopulated, but the US does not come close overall. There are just more people in America - everywhere. And in Canada there is much more wildlife. I joke to people who I work with in here in Oregon that in order to bag a deer in Saskatchewan all they really need to do is go there, rent a big SUV and get all the insurance on it. Then start driving around. Im actually only half joking. My cousin live in North Vancouver and just had a bear on their porch. That doesn`t happen to my knowledge in Portland.

And then there is the Canadian healthcare, which is awesome and the one other thing I truly miss since moving to the US.

I’m sure it’s very nice (I’ve been there. Enjoyed it, except for Thunder Bay, where we were treated like pariahs). But for this Southern kid who can’t stand winter light even at 33 degrees north, brrrrrrr…no thanks. It ain’t the cold. It’s the darkness.

I think our identity is exemplified by the background of our Governor General. She’s a black immigrant woman from Haiti. And I’m very happy about that.

Looking at a map, and 33 degrees isn’t all that “north” to me! How can you stand it being so hot all the time! :wink: I spent a week in Brownsville in October a couple of years ago and I was miserable; every time I went outside it was 90! Granted that’s like 26 degrees north (or thereabouts - oh excuse me: thereaboots!) :stuck_out_tongue:

Oh man, I love the hot weather and long summer days. Cold, dark weather makes me feel all cramped and miserable. I can stretch out and enjoy myself when it’s 95 and 90 percent humidity. :slight_smile:

I learned something when I was in the US in September. I live on Vancouver Island. Here in the summer it’s so nice because it can stay light till 10 pm. I went to Arizona and it gets dark almost the same time every day at about 6:30-7:00.

It does suck in the winter though when it’s dark by 5:00.

As a Canuck working in the states here’s some things i’ve noticed: Seems like cultures in the states are accepted but not celebrated. There’s a difference. Multiculturalism (a dirty word it seems amongst some conservatives) IMHO is embraced and celebrated in Canada.

Conservative radio to me in the states was mind boggling. I couldn’t believe my ears listening to the likes of Savage and Levin. You don’t usually hear that type of vitriol over Canadian airwaves. For instance, we don’t use the Liberal label the same way it’s used in the states. Seems like the political discourse is more cutthroat in the US.

When we camped in Canada (Eagle Lake Ontario) it was early July and I was surprised at how chilly it got at night, compared to what I am used to. but the long sunlight in the summer that floatygimpy described sounds nice.

Now livardo may have hit the nail on the head. the political debates here are enough to make me want to scream - so angry all the time. (quite frankly, this is exactly why pot should be legal!) Hey, is pot legal in Canada?

I Am Canadian!
For the record, only Torontonians and Newfies say “aboot.” The rest of us say “abowt.” Eh.

Yeah, we have nice, natural areas, but this thread seems to be giving the impression that all Canadians wear lumberjack shirts and sleep in tents. I live in Calgary, and the last time I was in a tent was maybe 20 years ago, and I like it that way. In fact, the vast majority of Canadians live in large cities. We go visit nature.

I wish we had locations for guests, so you could see that you will get different perspectives from different regions of Canada. The BC experience is not the same as the prairie experience or the Toronto experience or the Montreal experience or the Maritimes experience or the northern experience.

What makes Canada great? I think in a nutshell we don’t get in each other’s faces too much. That goes a long way.

Pot is kind of a grey area legally- I’ve seen people walking down the street smoking a joint, but if you went out of your way, you could probably still get arrested for it. I think it has been de-criminalized but still not technically legalized. My take on it - if you want to smoke a joint or two in the privacy of your own home, no one is going to bother you.