Why do you love your country?
Patriotism is important for a healthy community and society. It allows for people to care for their fellow countryman, and to care about the welfare and quality of the environment around them. While it is easy to complain about where you live, it's nice to take a step back and consider what you are grateful for. After all, no place can be 100% bad.
Redditor u/schaapdejoopheffer asked people, "What is something about your country you're actually really proud of?" and answers poured in from all around the world.
20. It's not perfect, but...Giphy
"USA- our music. Jazz, Blues, Rock and Roll, Hip-Hop, R&B, Country. All started here. Even the concept of MIDI originated in California.
Yes USA is in shambles politically, economically, socially, etc- but thanks to my country, I also have some of the things that get me through it!"
19. Great sense of direction
"That in the UK you can direct people mostly using pubs as signposts. 'Yep, turn left at the Black Swan, go a mile past the Coach & Horses and then is 100m past The Eight Bells. I miss pubs. Damn this lockdown."
18. Scary beautiful weather
"I live in the USA, and I love the weather. There are amazing lightning shows here and stunning supercells and tornadoes, sometimes these things are destructive, but when they aren't, they really are beautiful, and amazing."
17. Fast and yummy food
"Im from america and our fast food restaunts rock"
16. Cash that's way ahead of its time
"I know I'm late to this feed but I'm Aussie and really proud of Australian cash. When I went to America, It really drew my attention towards how good Australian cash is because I collected SO MANY AMERICAN COINS. Also, all the notes are waterproof and the new design as braille on it."
15. Mountains for days
"Nepal: we got the gorgeous mountain ranges."
14. You can experience the best of nature
"Siberia for sure, it should be the defenition of seasons, in winter it can get to -50 C°, in the summer it can get to 30 C°, in spring and autum there are a lot of berries and fruits that grow everywere, I think it is everything right about a place, you get to experiance everything."
13. Perfect place for vegetarians
"Indian here and it's gotta be the food. We have the most varieties of delicious vegetarian food. And the lowest consumer of meat in the world, pretty good for a country of 1.3 billion"
12. Incredibly well made dams
"I'm from the netherlands, and i would say our dams. Most of our land is below sea level and the dams do great work, including at the tv-tas islands. (Not the carribean islands)
It can take the biggest storms. But sadly once in 10 000 years there is a superstorm that can break them."
11. A bunch of quirky states
"I like having a bunch of small states in America so it's easier to distinguish where somebody is and every state kinda has their own quirk. Most countries have their own variation of this but I think America does it the best."
10. Protecting small businesses
"As an Aussie I'm proud that when Burger King tried to expand out from America into Australia, we made them change their name to Hungry Jacks for all their stores in Australia because of 1 really small fish and chip shop that already had the name Burger King"
9. A lovely gesture during a crisis
"Kenya, when the Maasai tribe donated 14 cows to US in sympathy after the 9/11 attacks"
8. The food is really, truly goodGiphy
"As a Mexican, I have to admit that our government has gone to ****. But, we do have an amazing food culture."
7. Perfect place for skiing
"Austria. Don't need to drive/fly far away for some of the best skiing resorts in the world."
6. It's all about the landscapeGiphy
"I'm from Iceland and I have to say that I'm super proud of its nature. I mean it's definitely special and so unique!"
5. Internationally known
"At one point LEGO was almost 1% of denmark's global exports."
4. The best dams
"Our ability to control water. The work the Dutch put in to make this land livable with the dam-systems earns my respect."
3. You can find all of the habitats
"As an Aussie, our diverse land of deserts, rainforests and bushland. The Australian outdoors is incredible."
2. Who hasn't had to read Russian literature in school?
"Яussian literature probably. It serves as a great example of our natural ability to turn our suffering into art and base our national culture on it."
1. Cave cheese
"Switzerland. That cheese that aged for 5 years in a cave"
Do you have something to confess to George? Text "Secrets" or "" to +1 (310) 299-9390 to talk to him about it.
“You are your own worst critic."
Unless you're a country. Then every single one of your citizens is your worst critic.
For all the chaos and polarization it produces, the internet holds a powerful and unique capability: crowdsourcing.
In a world of 195 countries, it's difficult to really get a handle on the feel of each one. We know about a place's economy, it's war history, and it's place in the global economy.
But it can be difficult to get a read on the day-to-day feel of a place.
Reddit comes up big.
qara-bala asked, "What do you hate most about your own country?"
The fact that most of it is just fields.
Unfortunately, a Wildly Popular Answer
We have the makings of an amazing nation and could have a thriving economy and truly show the world what equality (in race and gender) should look like.
But no. Our government steals form the poor, empowers no one and blame the past for all our "problems."
The Dark Underbelly of the Cute Sheep Photos
High suicide rate and a sh*t ton of meth.
Welcome to New Zealand!
Take Your Pick
A woman is murdered every 2 hours and a half.
The government keeps stealing from the people.
Inconclusive, But This Screams 2nd Amendment Argument
That individual states are permitted to ignore sections of the bill of rights that they disagree with.
Institutions Backed by God
Tax exempt religions.
How exactly does the country with the highest incarcerated population on the planet get to keep calling itself "the Land of the Free?"
He was Only One Dude!
That the first thing that comes up when someone mentions it is Pablo Escobar.
The sheer global arrogance that seems to be genetically embedded in almost all of us.
Yes, the British empire was once one of the most powerful in the world.
It's gone now. Get over it.
Not Just a Stereotype
Australia Asked Gay Asylum Seekers If They Could Just Pretend To Be Straight And Go Back To Their Home Countries
Many people across the globe are forced to seek asylum in far away places for fear that their sexual orientation or gender identity will lead to persecution, prosecution and even death in their home countries.
That risk must generally be proven when requesting asylum.
Spoiler: there's a right way and a wrong way to ask for proof.
The documents, at their worst, note that some Australian immigration officers asked if asylum seekers could successfully return to their home countries, pretend to be straight, and so avoid persecution.
@HannahD15 WTAF. Just checked my watch, yes it is Jan 2020.— Hammyhamster (@Hammyhamster)1580178730.0
In 2018, the Department of Home Affairs conducted an internal review of immigration officer performance during the interview stage of an asylum seeker's journey through Australia's immigration apparatus.
A total of 21 interviews occurring between November 2016 and August 2017 were randomly chosen and reviewed.
To humanize and contextualize this, consider that these interviews are the moment when a non-straight and/or non-cisgender person arrives to prove their case. If the interview goes well, the person will be able to remain in Australia, safe to inhabit their identity without fear of violence anymore.
The burden of proof becomes significant in a moment like that.
Does this person need to show that they'd be persecuted at home if they openly expressed their orientation and/or gender, or that they'd be persecuted even if they kept their orientation or identity hidden?
Australia answered this question nearly two decades ago, in a 2003 ruling by its highest court.
At that time, the court heard a claim brought by two gay men seeking asylum in Australia despite remaining in the closet back in Bangladesh. The court ruled that asylum claims based on sexuality must be considered even if it's possible to hide that sexuality in the country of origin.
Officers must, according to that ruling, consider only what would happen if an asylum seeker were openly gay or openly non-cisgender at home.
A decade's passing apparently made that distinction fuzzy.
Four of those randomly chosen 21 interviews include immigration officers asking an asylum seeker if they could keep their sexuality discreet at home and not face persecution.
@avatarOfTruth @HannahD15 @BuzzFeedNews That being “discreet” is no guarantee of safety? People beat and kill other… https://t.co/XGersyNoqQ— Rod Brown (@Rod Brown)1580179234.0
In two other interviews, asylum seekers were in a heterosexual marriage. Immigration officers cited this and called their homosexual orientation claim into question, effectively a "straight until proven gay" approach.
Both those asylum claims were rejected.
@HannahD15 Well, now hang on, maybe they also asked political dissidents if they could be, you know, “less dissident”— Nathan L (@Nathan L)1580179618.0
One interview asked the person, "Why do you think you are gay" displaying a clear misunderstanding of how sexuality works.
Ghassan Kassisieh is the legal director for Equality Australia, a national nonprofit organization dedicated to "promoting and protecting LGBTQIA+ rights."
He spoke with Buzzfeed News about the negligent disregard of Australian government policies by the immigration officials.
"Seventeen years after the High Court ruled that applicants must not be expected to remain discreet about their sexuality in order to avoid persecution, 4 out of 21 interviewers seem to have continued down this problematic line of questioning."
"Worse still, applicants who say they remain heterosexually married to avoid bringing shame on themselves and their families, are simply not believed to be gay."
@HannahD15 It’s likely my partner will be killed if his family ever discover his sexuality. We’ve applied for 2 off… https://t.co/UaN14YVLcQ— 2 Men in ❤️ (@2 Men in ❤️)1580190919.0
In its conclusions, the official government review acknowledged concerns and dedicated itself to improvement.
"Assessment of LGBTI claims can be difficult, as the evidence is usually limited to the applicant's personal account."
"It is important that the questions asked during the interview assess the credibility of the LGBTI claims, but are also sensitive and not overly intrusive."
The Department of Home Affairs did provide new instructions to immigration officers to ensure interviews were conducted more sensitively.
Kassisieh's response to those changes was positive, but cautious.
"Guidelines are only good if people follow them."
"While the department must be commended for its guidelines, training and quality assurance processes, the results of its audit show that more needs to be done to ensure every applicant is given a fair hearing no matter who is making the decision."