Moving to Canada, Eh?
Let Slate help you decide if it's really for you.
Updated Friday, Nov. 5, 2004, at 6:37 PM
3) Do you like to smoke pot? Circle one: yes / no / only for medicinal reasons / only with John Ashcroft
(Judges in at least three provinces have now decriminalized marijuana possession and the federal government is considering decriminalizing it in small quantities. We are advised that the feds alsogrow great masses of it in large underground caverns and may soonexpand the use of these caverns as shelters towhich the entire country would retreat in the event of a terrorist attack or to spur mass-munchies in case of a national Doritos glut. And only in Canada would you find marijuana advocates genuinely arguing that people actually drive better stoned.)
4) Are you covered in vast quantities of coarse, black fur? Circle one: yes / no
(Don't kid yourself. It is freakin' cold up there. While 90 percent of Canadians live within 100 miles of the U.S. border, the places they live north of are Green Bay and Buffalo.)
5) Do you like to wear white sneakers (Canadians call these "running shoes") with jeans? Circle one: yes / no
(Canadians are an extraordinarily stylish people, without the excess snobbery of Europeans; and most of them manifest this by being strikingly well-shod. Canadians generally find themselves perplexed by shiny tracksuits, leggings, baseball caps, and sweaters with reindeer on them.)
6) Do you generally find being alive to be just fine? Circle one: yes / no
(For some reason Canadians seem to live longer, be healthier, and pay less for these privileges. It has something to do with national health insurance, adequate primary care, particularly for children, and the availability of quality prescription drugs. (See, e.g., Question 3, above.)
7) Are you gay, or, alternatively, do you suspect that the institution of marriage should be open to all couples who are committed to living together and/or raising children in a loving environment? Circle one: yes / no
(Six and possibly soon seven Canadian provinces currently permit gay marriage. Before leaving office last year, Prime Minister Jean Chretien referred the question of the constitutionality of same-sex marriage to the Supreme Court for an opinion. The court hasn't yet decided the question.)
8) Are your political views either too complicated to be expressed in two-word bumper stickers, or, alternatively, do you find that you just don't much care about your neighbors' views on guns/the unborn/or which deity is their copilot? Circle one: yes / no
Dahlia Lithwick writes about the courts and the law for Slate.
Alex Lithwick is a Canadian living in Canada.
Illustration by Mark Alan Stamaty.Photograph of Royal Canadian Mounted Police officers on the Slate home page by Gunter Marx Photography/Corbis.