The Role of Canadian Citizenship Among Neighbors

The Role of Canadian Citizenship Among NeighborsCitizenship in any nation is largely something that focuses its importance and benefits to individuals on a personal level, though there are some social aspects to be explored, as well. Though the world is largely becoming more open to and accepting of people from different parts of the globe, there are still many tensions that exist between people of different nationalities, and those who live, work, and pay taxes in a given country may feel some animosity towards people in their homeland who do not take part in the same practices and share the same responsibilities. Immigrants who decide to start a new period of their lives in Canada are sure to find that, for the most part, the country’s people and its social policies are welcoming, and the obstacles towards integrating with society tend to be minimal. Still, there are some immigrants who choose not to apply for citizenship in Canada and who may seek indefinite renewal of visas or stay in the country despite having no legal documentation at all. People who follow this route may find it difficult to connect with others in Canada, particularly in their home communities.

Neighbors are an important part of nearly any home environment. From saying the occasional hello to helping out in times of need, neighbors can considerably contribute to the quality of life in a given area, and positive neighbor relationships are often able to render certain neighborhoods and districts highly desirable. In contrast, hostile or unfamiliar neighbor relations can detract from the satisfaction and benefits of living in a particular place, and in rare cases, difficulties between neighbors may even be responsible for a desire to move out. Immigrants in Canada are likely to find receptive, curious, and helpful neighbors wherever they decide to establish their homes. Many Canadians were once immigrants themselves, or have parents or other relatives who traveled to the country from distant lands, and this can make them especially open to new ideas, experiences, and stories.

At the same time, however, the fact that these Canadians went through the process of becoming citizens or heard tales about the challenges their family members faced in doing so may create a sense of duty and obligation among some, making it difficult to understand why some immigrants would decline the opportunity to become citizens themselves. Immigrants must ultimately decide on their own about the viability and appropriateness of attempting to become a Canuck, but gaining the perspectives of neighbors is often able to help make the choice clearer and more easily finalized. As citizens, neighbors can more meaningfully share their thoughts and opinions on national events and policies, and may feel a greater sense of brotherhood –one that helps to make living near to each other a positive and beneficial experience. Though neighbors alone cannot drive the choice to apply for citizenship in Canada, they can lend a lot of support when its needed most, exemplifying many of the principles of being Canadian.

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  • David P September 29, 2010 at 7:24 pm

    I always hated my neighbors wherever I lived. So no cultural exchange there.

  • Paula Camaño November 11, 2010 at 2:32 pm


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