Canada is a country known for multiculturalism and the many nations we possess. Just because we are diverse, it doesn’t correlate to a loss of a core Canadian identity. Canada is internationally recognized, “[we have] borders, where guards check passports, and an army” (Foran, 2017). A nation is defined as a large body of people who share the same beliefs and cultures. Canada cannot be called a complete nation because we consist of multiple nations within our land. The abundance of diversity makes it hard for us to say that we all share the same beliefs and celebrate the same cultures.
During the 1995 Quebec Independence Referendum, 49% of Quebecois citizens voted to be separated from Canada. Their French beliefs and historic conflict between the English caused an uproar of people who wished to take back the power they held before being defeated during the Seven Year War. Without a consensus on similar identities but instead a battle for control, conflicts may occur. When refugees and immigrants step into Canada, “plenty of Canadians believe we possess a set of normative values, and want newcomers to prove they abide by them” (Foran, 2017). While different beliefs and values from these newcomers are not suppressed, they should adapt to the new environment. We hope they develop an identity of themselves that links them to their new home and connects them to the rest of Canada. Government officials state, “we took in an estimated 300,000 newcomers in 2016, including 48,000 refugees, and we want them to become citizens [of Canada]” (Foran 2017). From the perspectives of many interviewed immigrants, we see how many of them can confidently say they identify as Canadian.
It is undoubted with Canada’s “high proportion of immigrants and official policy of multiculturalism” that many people think citizens are losing their Canadian identity (Todd, 2016). As a country, we aren’t as similar as being a nation, and we aren’t as separated as being a post-nationalistic state.