Tuesday, July 10, 2007

I’m an American!

"The name of American, which belongs to you in your national capacity, must always exalt the just pride of patriotism more than any appellation."

- George Washington, 1796

Americans get used to being called different things by different people. Europeans call us Yankees, much to the angst of the southerns. In Mexico, we are called Gringos. British call us Yanks and Austrians playfully call us Seppos. Nonetheless, we call ourselves Americans.

Some people in other North and South America countries take offense to this name. The believe the US has hijacked the name of the continent and that everybody in the Americas has a right to call themselves Americans. Just another case of US arrogance. In Spanish, we are called estadounidense that translates into United Stater. I am not a fan of the name. Some times we are also called norteamericano or North American. That seems like a bad name too since both Mexico and Canada are also in North America.

I think there are some strong arguments for calling ourselves Americans. First, we are the only country in the world to contain the word “America” in its name. No confusion there. Second, Mexico official name is Estados Unidos Mexicanos. So estadounidense could also refer to them. Third, what other country uses it political format for its nationality. A person from the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland is British although we refer to the country as the UK. The “United States” is our political format, but American is our nationality.

If you must, blame the old guys who signed the Articles of Confederation in 1777, but I am an American!


At 5:48 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Right on!


Post a Comment

<< Home