LETTER: Hyphenating nationalities divides us

I should think there are not many among us that do not feel that our world is coming to a major turning point...

I should think there are not many among us that do not feel that our world is coming to a major turning point. Terror has become the order of the day and maybe we should all do something to help defuse this problem starting in our community and remove anything that pits one group against each other on the basis of religion, colour or nationality. I have thought about it a lot and feel saddened about some comments that are running rampant in our country at this time.

I feel at a loss to find a solution for all the problems but one issue may help and that is getting back our “national identity” and I wonder if the media could help in this.

I am a senior citizen who considers himself a Canadian. In fact I emigrated here in 1981 from England with my wife and daughter.  We first arrived in Montreal and spent four and a half years there, three as Landed Immigrants, then as soon as we could we became Proud Canadians.

I was not impressed with being called an Anglophone and whenever I could called myself a telephone but the stigma was still there. Our next-door neighbor, who was born in Canada but her parents, had emigrated from Poland.  She was very unhappy by being told she had to hyphenate her nationality to Polish-Canadian.

Today we hear the media talk about Asian-Canadian, Indo-Canadian and Chinese-Canadians. Have the media no idea that every time they do this it divides us as Canadians and drives a wedge between us. I feel that if you have stood up and taken the Oath of Allegiance to Canada you should be called a “A Canadian.” Not a separate hyphenated group based on your country of origin.

Who knows, one day, maybe we could even change the term “First Nation” to Canadian after all Canada is an Iroquois word meaning Cabin or Lodge.

Bill Overy

Abbotsford