Where Are You From?

They say the US is a nation of immigrants, but I find the number of people born outside Canada who currently live in Canada and who make their way into my social circle to be much higher than the persons born outside the US who made it into my social circle while I was in the US. It’s anecdotal, of course, but “Where are you from?” seems to be somewhat less stigmatizing, somewhat less othering than in the US.

Not that it’s not stigmatizing. Not that it’s not othering. Just… 21% less. Like the Canadian dollar, eh?

On the other hand, because so many people are immigrants, the question seems to get asked even more up here. So I wonder if this cartoon from the Nib illustrates a problem that is less hurtful overall. I’m not sure it’s even answerable, but if anyone can stop the racist villains who persistently other the people I like and love and just kinda know, it’s for damn sure the Yellow Power Ranger. Don’t believe me? Then take it from Shing Yin Khor:


Go read the rest of Shing Yin Khor’s cartoon at the Nib. It’s sooooo worth it.


  1. agender says

    In my youth gender roles and nationalism were cleancut BUT HORRIBLE.
    I do not want that time and/or culture back.
    I do prefer the recent “chaos”.

  2. quotetheunquote says

    I simply don’t get why people continue to ask this … seriously, dudes, do you not get the huge load of crap that question carries with it?

    I’m Canadian, and white (sort of off-pink with the odd brown spot), so I’ve never been asked the question – here. In Sydney, Australia, though, I was once asked; although I think the way the woman put it was “Where’ya from, the ‘States?” Apparently, I had pronounced the word “bird” incorrectly, which she thought was HIL-arious.

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