Disabuse me of the common notion that all Canucks are nice as pie and simply adore the U.S. as a country. Do any Yankophobes actually exist up there? Has a Canadian ever gone on record as even considering hanging one of our presidents or politicians in effigy?
I guess I’m curious as to the roots of this “nice guy” sterotype- not just in terms of U.S./Canda relations but all around. How accurate is it?
I don’t know where you got the idea that Canadians adore America. Just not the case, in my opinion (and I am Canadian). In fact, most of the people I know think of America as obnoxious and overbearing. I got some awfully strange looks when I told people I was moving to the US.
Why would a Canadian hang an American politician in effigy?
And of course there are assholes in Canada. We just don’t elect them.
Obviously, I was speaking facetiously there (see title of forum).
The rest of your reply is interesting, though. (I asked to be disabused and, at least by one Canadian, I was.) Let me turn it to my fellow Yanks, then, and ask: Am I the only who’s picked up this “Canadians are super nice and they love us” vibe?
I used to think that way until I started visiting a Canadian message board. It was quite interesting to find out that because I was an American, I was automatically a Bush-lovin’, gun-totin’, Bible-spoutin’, warmonger who was fat, stupid and behaved like sheep. (I’m paraphrasing from the many comments I saw made about Americans on this particular board, most from a select few posters.)
The stereotype exists among Canadians but, as with any other people, is held only by those who have a particular viewpoint and aren’t willing to view others as individuals. I’ve seen plenty of Americans on that same board spout some equally insulting comments about Canadians.
As I very much enjoy visiting Canada and count a couple of her citizens as close friends, I just do what I do here at home - ignore the idiots.
I’ve known a lot of people who work overseas in Saudi and surrounding countries in the oil business. They’ve all been manual labour - we call them “rig pigs” at home. “Rig Pigs” are generally rough-and-ready, hard-drinking, hard-working kind of guys. YMMV.
I suppose I shouldn’t just leave a one-line driveby.
Canadians, individually, seem to get along with Americans, individually, just fine. Collectively it’s a different story. As a nation they don’t seem to hate the US so much as resent its existence. The only use they have for our country is as a standard for comparison. “X is better in Canada than in the States,” where X is just about anything you can think of.
Good question, Paul. Now the heavy drinking is completely in character…but I’m baffled as to the bitterness.
As for Canadians - don’t forget that political views can vary a great deal across Canada - it’s a big country. We’ve got one province (Alberta) that’s as conservative as you can get right between two provinces that have been run by people claiming to be socialist for years.
I’m not sure I know anyone who “adores” America - although Mike Harris (former Premier of Ontario) sure did a good impression at a speech he gave a few months ago. Most people I know thing your average everyday American is just a person, no more.
As for the stereotype of Canadians as polite, all round decent folk, I’m not sure where that sprang up. I’ve met my fair share of idiots up here. With a few exceptions, every American I have met is pretty much the same way. Some idiots, mostly nice.
I think the stereotypes stem from a country’s overall political stance. Since the US has taken a more active role in world affairs and brought more to that table, many other countries see them as obnoxious or interfering, depending on how the US’s involvement affects them. Since Canada generally hangs back, as we don’t have the kind of world presence the US does, we’re seen as more laid back, polite, etc.
Exgineer, I’ve never heard “X is better in Canada” except for health care. Given the choice, I’d probably live in the US. Anyone willing to marry me!? And my wife…
No, it’s not a myth. I knew plenty of them for 37 years. People who took great glee in being as much an asshole as they could possibly be. But that can’t come as a surprise, because assholes are everywhere. So are really wonderful people, too. It doesn’t matter which country you’re in, each has its share of both.
I think that the US population is unfairly portrayed on television. This colors the perceptions of other Canadians toward Americans. When I arrived here, I was dead nervous about going outside, because I had the totally unreasonable expectation that the place would be an armed camp, and that I would be mugged walking to the store. That’s the kind of crap perpetuated by shows like “Cops” and “America’s Most Wanted.” That’s what you see of Americans on Canadian TV. Nice people aren’t news or newsworthy. I married a wonderful American, who comes from wonderful Americans, with the exception of a few distant family members who are assholes. The same could be said about nearly anyone’s family, from anywhere.
My brother loves to come here, but his partner is boycotting the US and will not cross the border, for political reasons. He apparently goes on long, fairly stupid rants about Americans and does seem to dislike them greatly. Of course, he is not talking about the people who are just living and working and doing their lives, it’s about politics and politicians. I don’t think that’s the norm, but he certainly isn’t the only Canadian who feels that way. Some people just need something to complain about.
Another Western Canadian here - I think you may be a little out of touch, Moody. In my 37 years here, I have known one pro-U.S. person. The rest of the people I know and associate with vary from being indifferent to the U.S. to actively disliking it. Very few people I know would voluntarily move to the U.S.
As for Canadians being nice as pie, like everyone else has said, it’s a big country, with all kinds of people in it.
Most of the interaction I’ve had with Canadians has been pleasant enough but I’ve personally noticed that most of them seem to have huge chips on their shoulders about Americans in general.
Every stereotype I’ve heard said about Americans, excepting our overwhelming religiousness and our love for firearms, could easily apply to most Canadians I’ve met… especially overbearing nationalism. Granted, this is only anecdotal, but I’ve ran into a hell of a lot more Canadians that go on and on about how great Canada is than I have Americans ranting about the US.