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Thread: Why Do Some People from USA, Canada, Call Themselves German, English, Etc.?

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    Senior Member SwordOfTheVistula's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Walküre View Post
    I'm not speak of ethnic identity, please read my sentences. I'm speak of Americans and Canadians who say they are the same as Germans, English, usw. Peoplen who refuse to identify with USA and Canada and want to identify with Germany and England, but they never visited and lived there and they don't know our national problems.
    Question for you regarding the Germans in the Habsburg Empire in the late 1800s and early 1900s who considered themselves 'German' and even 'German nationalists', despite actually living in Austria-Hungary: were these people also wrong to declare a German identity? If so, what makes them different than Americans and Canadians who consider themselves both 'Americans' and 'Germans', in the same way a Londoner might call himself both 'British' and 'English'

    Perhaps another example, if you grew up on a family farm which had been in your family for generations, and then moved to the city and left your brother behind to manage the farm, you would still consider the family farm your 'home' and become upset if it was mismanaged or otherwise imperiled.
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    Dear Walküre,

    At birth, my grandfather cried over my Mongolian Blue Spot (a congenital marker of Etruscan descent) and promised to rear me as a European. I suggest you stop claiming to be "German" and go back to the Levant.

    :::

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    Senior Member Matamoros's Avatar
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    Here when you fill out a form you are often asked to put in your ethnicity. "New Zealander" is not an option, it would not be accepted. So I write "English", just like a Chinese writes "Chinese" and an Indian writes "Indian".

    My blood? English. My language? English. My culture? English. This is why I describe myself as English.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bridie View Post
    I think Allenson said it best (and most concisely), maybe you should read it again :

    From a personal point of view...

    If you were to ask me to identify myself I would say that I am an Australian of English heritage.

    I should not have to relinquish my English ancestry and my personal history simply because I was born and raised in a faraway part of the former British Empire.
    Kind thank yous, I offer to you.

    I could even edit out the "ethnically" part of my post and leave it at just "culturally"....although that might be a little bit slippery me being from America and all. Even though I am an American of English ancestry (amongst a few other things), I wouldn't feel particularly "right" calling myself ethnically English. I am English genetically and linguistically but not culturally.

    So, does genetics + language + culture = ethnicity? I don't know the answer but this might not be too far from the truth. So, maybe I'm two-thirds ethnically English. Oh but wait, what about the Dutch, German and Scot blood coarsing through my veins? :o

    Also, I think you Aussies are closer to an English ethnicity than us Yanks of English heritage. You know, we threw off the yoke and all.

    That's why I call myself "New English".

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    Quote Originally Posted by Walküre View Post
    I am not speak of racial identity but of nationality. Americans and Canadians are Europeans racially but not nationally and culturally.


    To be German you must speak German and be cultural German, blood is not enough. They should call themself Americans with German ancestry but not German. In Germany we wouldn't consider them German.

    With German greeting,
    Walküre
    Most Americans of German descent recognise that they aren't actually Germans. When an American says: "I'm German" or "I'm Swedish", ect, they're using a kind of verbal shorthand. It takes too long to say "I'm an American of German descent". We tend to shorten our sentences for the sake of time.

    My father was born in Germany. I was born in The States. Growing up, the difference between the two was self-evident. I am an American of German ancestry. My father is a German w/ US papers.

    It sounds as though you have encountered some North Americans who have taken their ethnic identity to the extreme- for whatever reason. There is nothing that either of us can do about this.

    Let me assure you that most of us don't. We celebrate our ethnicity, but know that we're North Americans.

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    what do you consider.........

    An American that can trace his ancestry back to Heidelberg in the 1600s? What do you call us that are tired of the American hypocrisy and wish to move back to the motherland? Yes we are Americans but we wish we weren't. We are tired of the lies and trash that our government is spouting. We want to come back and be a part of Germany and Europe again.

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    The original poster was probably just a Turk.


    He is one of those Germans who dismisses German-Americans as traitors. Even though half a million Bund members were thrown into prison or on watch during the Second World War. Similarly, there were thousands who were interned during the Great War.

    That is not including the tens of thousands who returned home, in spite of repercussion and the risk of incarceration, to serve in the Imperial Army and the Wehrmacht.


    The film ''Passchendaele'', based on a true story, was about a German-Canadian family during WW1, where the father died at the battle of Vimy Ridge and the surprise twist was the man died fighting for Germany, not Canada.

    The film also exposed the treatment of German immigrants during WW1.

    There were also cases during both the First and Second World War of Americans killing and maiming dog breeds such as German Shepards and St. Bernards, because those dogs were ''Huns''.

    Germans were so ill-treated during the interwar that it became common practice to Anglicized their surnames and a lot of German traditions were stamped out and destroyed.


    Even surnames which sounded German (but were not) were also Anglicized. My Norwegian Great Grandfather changed our surname into a rather boring and generic-sounding Anglo surname. I imagine had he known how America would had turned out in the present day, he would had kept it.


    And there is nothing inferior about the German-Americans. It seems odd to me that the Germans bended forward when it came to integrating the Volksduestche. A lot of those ''Volksduestche'' were nothing more but ethnic Russians and you know it.

    Don't tell me Alexei Miller has more German blood and is more Germanic, than a 1922 immigrant (such as my Great Grandmother) or a 1950 immigrant from Austria or Bavaria.

  8. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by TheGreatest View Post
    The original poster was probably just a Turk.
    Yet the rejection of "German-Americans" as Germans among German nationalists is not alien.

    He is one of those Germans who dismisses German-Americans as traitors. Even though half a million Bund members were thrown into prison or on watch during the Second World War. Similarly, there were thousands who were interned during the Great War.

    That is not including the tens of thousands who returned home, in spite of repercussion and the risk of incarceration, to serve in the Imperial Army and the Wehrmacht.
    Tens of thousands out of a group of millions? That speaks clearly where the loyalties of the majority laid. How do you call taking up arms against your country of origin?

    And there is nothing inferior about the German-Americans. It seems odd to me that the Germans bended forward when it came to integrating the Volksduestche. A lot of those ''Volksduestche'' were nothing more but ethnic Russians and you know it.

    Don't tell me Alexei Miller has more German blood and is more Germanic, than a 1922 immigrant (such as my Great Grandmother) or a 1950 immigrant from Austria or Bavaria.
    We shouldn't accept either "German-Americans" who are long cut from their cultural and linguistic ancestry, nor Russians who have few drops of German blood left in their family lines. Simple as that. German-Americans are rejected because they want to both have the cake and eat it. Well, that can't happen. Most German-Americans I met want to be embraced with open arms by German nationalists although they make little effort to return to their roots. And I don't consider "German-Americans" inferior, but I don't think you can be part of two nations. Sooner or later one'll have to make a choice. Those millions of German-Americans who didn't take up arms to help Germany in the wars made it. Those who changed their names from German to something else made it.

    Here is why the ethnic Germans from Eastern Europe (the Germans, not the Russian frauds) are accepted while Americans aren't:
    - they speak German
    - they practice German culture and habits
    - they don't consider themselves part of two nations, only of the German nation.
    I have no doubts someone like Hrodnand is German. He doesn't consider himself "German-Romanian". But I have doubts to accept the majority of German-Americans as part of my nation. I'm not saying there aren't exceptions. But they certainly don't make up the majority or enough to generalize. If they had, then Germany could have won WWII.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Todesengel View Post
    Yet the rejection of "German-Americans" as Germans among German nationalists is not alien.


    Tens of thousands out of a group of millions? That speaks clearly where the loyalties of the majority laid. How do you call taking up arms against your country of origin?


    We shouldn't accept either "German-Americans" who are long cut from their cultural and linguistic ancestry, nor Russians who have few drops of German blood left in their family lines. Simple as that. German-Americans are rejected because they want to both have the cake and eat it. Well, that can't happen. Most German-Americans I met want to be embraced with open arms by German nationalists although they make little effort to return to their roots. And I don't consider "German-Americans" inferior, but I don't think you can be part of two nations. Sooner or later one'll have to make a choice. Those millions of German-Americans who didn't take up arms to help Germany in the wars made it. Those who changed their names from German to something else made it.

    Here is why the ethnic Germans from Eastern Europe (the Germans, not the Russian frauds) are accepted while Americans aren't:
    - they speak German
    - they practice German culture and habits
    - they don't consider themselves part of two nations, only of the German nation.
    I have no doubts someone like Hrodnand is German. He doesn't consider himself "German-Romanian". But I have doubts to accept the majority of German-Americans as part of my nation. I'm not saying there aren't exceptions. But they certainly don't make up the majority or enough to generalize. If they had, then Germany could have won WWII.
    Well I'm speechless. How would I settle for a sad panda emote but this will do
    Not that the Brits will consider us to be English but it does seem that most ''Americans'' in general seem to be Anglophile in their orientation.

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    Todesengel,

    the only I would add is that I'll pit my Blood coursing through my veins with any real "German" such as the millions of Turks, Russians, Poles, Indians, Africans, Arabs, etc....My German language skills may not be great. but that does not make me any less German than an Iranian that can speak it flawlessly!

    I thought of one more thing, I don't like the collective guilt thing and I certainly will not allow anyone to put an earlier generations transgressions on my back. It was the American mid-west that did not want to go to war with Deutschland both times. However, the elites on the east coast did. I may be slightly older than you but not old enough by a long shot to have participated in WWII.
    S

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