MB, I must say, that certainly is a somewhat unique situation, and to be honest, it makes a lot of sense – especially wanting to be able to bring your children there as well, if that ever seemed to be a better option than here. I wasn’t thinking much about Canada. Heck – I’ve got very fond memories of curling matches where we hosted Canadian teams, and others where we went up there. I frankly found the people to be more genuine as a whole, when compared to too many Americans, if that makes any sense. Good folks! In a sense, it was the good things about America without as much of the attitudes, pretenses, etc.
As for dual citizenship with Canada, I don’t have any particular negative reaction with that. It’s other countries, and particular cultures, that I have the problems with. In the past, many cultures came to America and retained theirs while at the same time adapted and blended into ours as well (Irish, Polish, German, etc.). Oktoberfest is still celebrated in the US and has become part of American tradition in some communities with large German ancestry. Good fun, not in any way opposed to basic American values. Same thing with St. Patrick’s day – you don’t have to be Irish to choose to wear green on that day, it’s just celebrated as a fun thing. And yet the Irish get to celebrate it without cramming it down our throats. There are many other traditions and even celebrations that are not intended to be exclusively for one group to the exclusion of the rest of us. One of the neatest experiences I’ve had in a long time was being invited to a Seder at the end of Passover. Not only was it educational, but I found it very enlightening in a number of ways – and felt entirely welcomed, even though I had no idea what was happening without the translation program distributed to non-Jewish guests. Heck – a gazillion years ago, when very directly involved with training of student pilots from various Middle East countries, I was involved each year with the celebration (FEAST!) at the end of Ramadan. But back then, we didn’t have any sense of exclusion from their cultural things, nor did we see any hanging back (with only a few exceptions – mainly Saudi royalty) in their joining of ours.
I actually felt a close kinship with those guys, and wish I knew what happened to some of them after the Shah was gone. It was a very different world back then. Christian and Jewish people were seen as part of the People of the Book by Muslims back then, and Jesus Christ was at least recognized (and even revered) at least as a great prophet. Today? One cannot tell who to trust. And we know from specific statements by militant Muslims that it’s considered perfectly OK to lie when it comes to one’s intent as it regards religion. I suspect that’s partly justified by Abraham who told his wife to tell the Egyptians that she was his sister, but I don’t know that for sure. Mohamed certainly didn’t discourage it!
So, with a few exceptions, I still stand on the dual citizenship issue anymore. Ten years ago? I wouldn’t have given it a thought. But now, when people you don’t even know, can come bomb some activity, stab you on a street corner, or gun you down in a crowd, all because of a supposedly religious and certainly cultural difference, in our own country – I say ship ‘em back where they came from originally without strong, ongoing evidence of them having embraced American culture. They can keep their religion and worship as devoutly as they wish. I don’t worry about Jews suddenly doing an uprising against non-Jews (including Christians), simply because of what somebody can point to in the Old Testament. The same USED to be true of Muslims as well. Now one cannot tell who they can trust, and it’s just gotten too dangerous.
For you? What a great option! If I was to go anywhere else (though I don’t foresee that), it’d almost certainly be Canada (if they could adopt a Southern weather climate – hah hah!). I once knew an Iranian C-130 navigator with whom I became fairly close as he progressed through early pilot training to upgrade to the front seat when he went back home after graduation. He most sincerely invited me and my wife to come visit him in Iran if we could ever arrange it and said he could arrange a trip to the US in a nicely equipped C-130, and fly us there himself. I wish (back then) we could have! Would I have a problem with him, individually, having dual citizenship? None whatsoever – very selective case-by-case exception. In his case, I could imagine him, along with their Iranian liaison officer (who was married to an American woman), being quite comfortable in the US after the Ayatollah came to power. And I could also understand them hoping, somehow, that a return to what they once had (minus the Shah’s brutality) might one day return, thus holding on to their Iranian citizenship. Again, a valid, but for me rare, exception. General policy? Nope!.