Does any other nation in the world go by a name that begins “United States of”? I know of the UK and The United Arab Emirates, but nothing that distinguishes itself as a collaboration of individually governed States.
I ask because “United States” sounds generic and vague even if I guess we might be the only one. I wish we had a Proper name like Spain or Japan or Brazil. I don’t mean those names are necessarily better (though I think they are) but that they are singular names that mean singular things. Australia is Australia and you wouldn’t say that protesters are australian together in a cause or that someone’s been driven to an australia of panic. Even our friendly Northern neighbor, who is also composed of individual… uh… things?… regions?… has the lovely name of Canada to group them all together. Provinces and Territories! That’s it. Anyway, nobody ever says a bedroom’s in a canada of disarray!
I guess the US is no worse than the UK, but Great Britain sounds AWESOME. They have “Great” right in their name! And though it doesn’t apply so much any more, the word Britain actually has an etymology that describes its people. I like that. I suppose in some ways, we are united, but the rest of our name (our units of government and our continental location) is boring and not terribly descriptive of us. The fact that it includes “of America” seems to indicate that otherwise we’d confuse people.
“Wait, are you from the United States of Luxembourg? Oh, of AMERICA. Well, no wonder, then.”
I’d like to propose a national name change. My proposition? The Wide Consumption! It describes us perfectly in so many ways. I’d be a proud Consumer. (I already am, informally.) And yes, I know that consumption is also an archaic name for tuberculosis, and yes I know that WC stands for water closet. Doesn’t that just add more merit to my suggestion? As for “Wide” — self-explanatory.
I think it would make much more sense for Europeans, Africans, Asians, and other Americans to spot travelers from our nation and be able to say, “Oh, look, it’s a Wide Consumer.” That would be SO EASY to translate! They probably wouldn’t even need to be taught anything about us in advance to be able to name us.
Now, who do I talk to about this?