Lately there's been talk about how arrogant it is for people from the USA to call themselves Americans. Or more specifically, when asked traveling where they're from to answer "America".
I understand the argument that there are many other countries in the Americas (North, Central, and South) but I think the people writing these statements are missing the reality.
The United States of America has many shortened nicknames. The United States, the US, the States, USA, and America.
Did you know that Colombia used to be called the United States of Colombia and it's official name now is the Republic of Colombia? And consider the Republic of Seychelles or the Republic of Chile. What do we call those countries? Take the United States of...America and shorten that. What do you get? Yep. So maybe it's the fault of our country for naming itself similar to the name of the continent. Colombians are not "Republicans" just as much as Americans are not "United Statesians".
Canadians, Americans, and Mexicans are all North Americans. That is our continent. Likewise Colombians, Peruvians, etc. are South Americans. The whole "Americans" argument doesn't take away from that
I would like to know what these people suggest we use instead. I suppose we'll have to change the name of the song "America the Beautiful" and stop using the term "proud to be an American".
In specific regard to travel, the more travel experience you get, the more you learn to adapt to what works. For instance, you use the word "maybe" to ask a question in almost any country if they speak a small bit of English. "Maybe it rains today?" "Maybe I buy ticket here?" The word "finished" is all inclusive of "closed" "we're out of it" "stopped running" etc. You also learn very quickly that if you try to answer the question "Where are you from?" by saying "the United States", you will be presented with a quizzical look of misunderstanding. Then you say "America" and "Oh, okay".
Like it or not, America is the term that people in foreign countries know for the good ole' US of A.
Now all of that said, there's always a time or two when you might want your answer to be "Canada". And the response of "Ohhh, Canada Dry!" never gets old. "Yes," you say dryly (he he), "Canada Dry". Sorry Canadians, we do use you a lot.
Saying you are from "America" is not disrespectful to other countries in the American continents. And trust me, I'm NOT one of those people that thinks the US is better than other countries or deserves special treatment. But please for the love of all that is good in the world, don't say 'Merica. That IS disrespectful to our own country and you will sound a like a total redneck. Even writing it just now made me feel a little sick.