The country we now call "Macedonia" (i.e. The Republic of Macedonia) was formed in 1991 after Yugoslavia broke up. Greece didn't like the name, because "Macedonia" was already the name of a large region in Northern Greece. This would be similar to a region of Quebec bordering the US breaking away from Canada and calling itself Maine. Some Greeks apparently felt that the Republic of Macedonia's name implied that it had territorial ambitions for parts of Northern Greece. As a compromise, the country will now be called North Macedonia.
There’s a Mexican state named Baja California and a US state named simply California. Exact same thing as this Macedonia business.
I refer to the country south of me as "the US" or "the USA". To me as a Canadian I live in the Americas so I could be an American. Growing up nobody I knew called the US "America" you'd even hear "the Boston States", I have no clue how that originated.
But I've noticed over the past decade or two it's become more common for people in the US to refer to their country as America. I know it's a shortened form but still, to me, it's weird because:
Americas, ? (demonym for people of the entire region?)
I know some people counter with it's "North America dummy!" but wouldn't that mean the USA should be the USNA?
In his farewell address, George Washington said this: "The name of American, which belongs to you in your national capacity, must always exalt the just pride of patriotism more than any appellation."
More than that, this is just what citizens of the U.S. are called. New Zealanders are Kiwis and Brits are Brits and Canadians are Canadians. Every nationality has a name, this is ours. The continents shouldn't be called America anyways, as Amerigo Vespuci had little to do with its discovery or exploration, but that's the way it is.
In other words, this isn't some evil American power grab, and an insult to the rest of our Western Hemisphere neighbors, but a quirk of history that won't change any time soon.
Abroad, Hollywood has popularized the use of "American" to refer to citizens of the USA. Also, most languages don't have any other way to refer to US citizens because of its odd name. I'm only aware of Spanish "estadounidenses".
It's no different than if the most powerful European country were to call themselves Europeans alone.
(Sorry, but the Americas is what the continents are called normally - in English at least - did you just make up a new rule? There's even a Wikipedia entry: https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Americas)
Regardless, the name for Americans isn't changing any time soon, so I wouldn't get worked up about it. Besides, we are Americans in the most pedantic use of the term - if the Canadians, Mexicans and anyone else in this hemisphere wants to call themselves Americans too, they can go right ahead. They'll just seem petty and silly though.
No, the continent(s) have traditionally been called America. A look at Google Ngram Viewer shows that Americas has hardly been used. It's a recent phenomenon, probably a result of the US hijacking "America". Even I feel sometimes compelled to call it "Americas" in Europe because it has become a given that US=America.
Not sure about the literature of the US, but in Latin American literature, writers have generally referred to the continent(s) as America, e.g http://www.historyofcuba.com/history/marti/America.htm
The original map by Waldseemüller has "America" written on it: https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/d/db/Wa...
To me it's similar to the demonym 'New Yorker'. Is that someone from Buffalo, Schenectady, etc., New York or from the five boroughs or from the county of New York, ie, Manhattan?
What about Netherlander instead of Dutch since it's a corruption of Deutsch. We could go on about makes sense and what doesn't.
> It's no different than if the most powerful European country were to call themselves Europeans alone.
Assuming always that it had established itself as the Federal Republic of Europe or some such before anybody else claimed the name.
America? We get all these howls of protest, but what do you like better?
United States? To call us that has the same problem. It's kind of unfair to the United Mexican States, don't you think?
That leaves "The" and "Of". But we can't call ourselves those, because of The Dominion Of Canada.
The short name for The United States Of America is "America". It just is. And we don't particularly care whether you like it or not.
"The Boston states", if I understand correctly, does not refer to the entirety of the USA, but only to New England (Maine, Vermont, New Hampshire, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Connecticut - the states that center on Boston).
I have no idea what the inhabitants think about this or if anyone even cares, but it sounds quite confusing.
The situations would be more analogous if the Mexican state were called simply "California" or the US state were called "Baja California."
Baja California Norte
I was there last year. It's a great country to visit as a tourist. There are much political issues still at large there. With Greece, there's that dispute over who has 'the right' to Macedonia. IMO, neither. There was no Greece and there was no (republic) Macedonia back then. There's an argument about language I've heard, that is that Macedonians spoke Greek. Could be, but things change. It's not like local populace disappeared when Slavs rode in. History is complex, yo and it's in no ones interest to bicker over it.
You clearly know nothing about the differences between the two people. Turks are very different from Greeks on even the level of "looks," let alone culture.
And did Greece suggest "North Macedonia"? If I was worried about territorial ambitions, I don't think "North" would allay my fears.
The region of "Macedonia" has been fought over for millennia and more recently carved up into Yugoslavia, Greece and Bulgaria by the 1913 Treaty of Bucharest and then re-initialised in 1991 when Yugoslavia dissolved with Greece and Bulgaria still holding land acquired in 1913.
The Republic of Macedonia really had no more claim to the name than Greece and they've both been being dicks about the whole thing for the last century. But that's Balkan politics. Pain, strife and abject suffering over stupid shit that shouldn't be a problem.
There was (is) a substantial ethnic (Slavic) minority in the Greek park of Macedonia that identified themselves as Macedonians, which was treated pretty terribly by the right wing Greek authorities after the Balkan Wars: https://uk.news.yahoo.com/greece-apos-macedonian-slavic-heri... (My father was not allowed to visit his birthplace in the Greek part of Macedonia because his Yugoslav passport had the slavic name of the town).
It is this issue that is the real reason for the dispute, not Ancient Macedonia. The serious Macedonian academic institutions (and almost all of the people that I know) don't claim that we have any cultural relation with them.
I don't know how long it's going to last but to be honest it was a prime example of ostrichism on our part (I'm Greek btw). Not that the other side didn't partake in kitsch demonstrations of nationalism, but at some point we should have taken cue from the rest of the world that called the country Macedonia and moved on, rather than pretend the matter is not de facto over and behave like a stubborn child
Alexander III of Macedon died in 323 B.C. That's 2,300 years ago. Turning a millennium-and-a-half footnote into a geopolitical issue is stupid.
> If you claim some identity in front of many people you must be able to support it otherwise you end up looking like a fool
Greece's per-capita GDP is three-quarters that of Europe's average . Macedonia's is less than one-third that of Greece's. This is a stupid thing for two poor countries to create economic, political and geopolitical hurdles out of.
I'd wager there were fatal consequences from this dispute.
Never underestimate the degree of stupidity our reality can support.
When the Four Seasons opened in EPA, they initially gave the address as just "Palo Alto" but with the proper EPA Zip code, knowing that the USPS would still deliver the same. Media later called them on it.
[added after downvotes] what is wrong with asking why "North" is the chosen distinction? it seems that the more substantial distinction is the slavic vs greek culture and population when one considers the four regions that use the name "Macedonia"!
Just like US states, most European borders are not drawn according to ethnic groups, and their names are similarly historical rather than descriptive. The nation state is a 19th century fantasy.
As for your belief that European borders are unrelated to ethnic/cultural distinctions, do you know much about Europe? [edit: blocked from replying] Were there truly no pre-19th century differences between the peoples and cultures in Finland, Norway, Sweden, and Russia? and no-pre 19th century differences between the languages and cultures of France, Spain, and Italy? [edit2] yes, being unable to quickly "reply" makes it difficult to converse in HN :-). [edit3] France is named after the Franks. Sweden (Sverige) after the Svea people. Finland/Suomi after the Finns. Russia after the Rus. Etc. Each of these has an ethnic, linguistic, and cultural core predating the 19th-century nation states.
In my mind Finland and France are examples of European countries that have pretended very hard at some point in their history to be single-ethnicity nation states counter to how the actual population sees themselves.
France is named after the Franks, but if you went back in time to 1700 and asked random people within the country's boundaries the question "What's your ethnic group?", the answers you'd get would include Breton, Basque, Catalan, Provencal, Alsatian, etc. — a minority of people within the Kingdom of France would identify primarily as "French" (and nobody would have heard of the Franks, a people that existed a millennium earlier).
If you asked that same question in Finland in 1700, you'd find a lot of people who identify as Swedes. And why shouldn't they? It was an eastern province of Sweden where every modestly educated person spoke Swedish. You'd also find people who identify as Sami, Karelian, etc.
Flash forward to newly independent Finland of 1918, and you'll find politicians who are adamant that it's a nation state. Yet descendants of those Swedish-speaking people are still there, and so are the Sami speakers, the Karelian speakers, and so on. Some of them will identify as Finns while others never do.
But there’s certainly a “California” both in the USA and Mexico and it’s not confusing anyone.
I was born in Finland and have also lived in France.
(Edit: I see you replied to me by editing the parent post, but it makes the conversation impossible to follow if we both do that.)
Because one is called California and the other is Baja California.
Maine is not called "North Massachusetts"
The FACT is that the last Census was done in 2002.
According to conservative estimates pulled from the Health Ministry, there are less than 20% of Albanians currently residing on the territory of Macedonia.
And a little free lesson in history for you:
The Slavs you are referring to, in the 6th century did in fact invade and conquer present day Macedonia and whole of Greece, all the way down to Peloponnesus.
Byzantine historians stated that the Macedonians did not disappear with the Slavic invasion but continued to exist.
In the 10th century Salonica is described as the "largest city of the Macedonians".
Given the extreme nationalism of the Macedonians I do not think this country will resist history very long in this configuration. And if they do not accept the Albanians and do not live in peace with them they will be soon a tiny joke country.
Having grown up with Macedonian-Albanian friends, to this day, we both have respect for each others traditions. The common people living in Macedonia, regardless of their ethnic background, want one thing, and that is: peace and prosperity. Not war, nor divide, and not putting down, one another.
The conflict of 2001 is still a fresh reminder what can happen, where KFOR and NATO had to rescue the terrorist cowards surrounded by the Macedonian military. This is a fact.
Define "extreme nationalism", I challenge you.
Macedonians are all people born in Macedonia.
Everyone else, is a tourist, on a tourist visa.
Therefore, calling one self Albanian, while born in Macedonia is the same as a person of African descent born in the US, calling him/her self African, instead of African-American.
See how what you "think" makes no sense.
The Albanians are native in that region whereas you are the newcomers. So, if you think a little bit more (which I highly doubt you can) you will understand why your analogy is just nonsense.
The Albanians are Albanians and they will remain Albanians. They are of course citizens of Macedonia, a joke sate which does not even have an acceptable name, but they are Albanians.
You want examples?
Boban Ilic killed a 4-year old Albanian. I am not talking about other incidents, but killing with your car a 4-year old is just an act of a coward criminal/animal. And most of the Macedonians/Bulgarians supported him. Moreover, he is free to go.
Anyway, as I said, you are a joke state, and very soon you will be a minority in that joke state.
Let me see then if you can kill 4 years old child.
I'm pretty much aware of that history lesson, thanks. How does that change what I wrote initially?
The relations between Bulgaria and Macedonia were a bit more bumpy, I don't know all of the details, but Bulgarians* consider(ed) Macedonians just as a part of their own and their language as a dialect. Serbian and Macedonian languages are far to different for that. Yes, we can understand each other with some trouble, but that is no where near like Croatian, Bosnian, Montenegrin and Serbian which at times sound identical.
The only issue is the conflict between the Serbian and Macedonian Orthodox churches, but that really does not have effect on anything else than themselves.
The situation with Albanians in Macedonia is disconcerting, at least from a Serb's perspective. It is just too easy to notice a pattern of behaviour, incidents and evenrs, and almost threatening stance, even in some comments here regarding the Albanian majority in Macedonia. Serbia has been through that and handled it poorly, and I'm afraid that Norhtern Macedonia is on the same slippery slope.
I said nothing offensive.
You're so interested in SJW-championing other people's causes to make yourself feel morally superior that you didn't even bother to notice that I'm not the OC.
Take it as you will.
I don't need your permission.