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This country is part of the Altverse universe. For the article on the sovereign nation with the same name, see Kingdom of Sierra.
Sierra (en)
Sierra (es)
塞拉 (zh)
Dãy Núi(vn)
공화국 (kr)
ทิวเขา (th)
美國(hn)
シエラ (ja)
Serran SSerran ESerran RSerran RSerran A (sb)[1]
Flag of Sierra (civil)
Coat of arms of Sierra
Flag National arms
Motto: Libertas sine sacrificio (Latin)[2]
Liberty without sacrifice
Map of Sierran provinces (colored)
Map of Sierra with its provincial boundaries
Capital
and largest city
Seal of Porciúncula Porciúncula
34°03′N 118°15′W
Official languages English, Spanish
Mandarin, Vietnamese
Korean, Thai, Han
Japanese, Serran
Recognised regional languages Arabic, Armenian
Dutch, French,
Gilbertese, Hawaiian,
Navajo, Pascuan,
Samoan
Ethnic groups (2010) 46% White
27% Asian
5% Black
1% Native Sierran
1% Native Hawaiian/Pacific Islander
20% Mixed or other
Demonym Sierran
Sovereign state Flag of Sierra Kingdom of Sierra
Government Federal parliamentary constitutional monarchy
• Queen
Angelina II (I)
Nemesis Heartwell (R)
Legislature Parliament
Senate
House of Commons
Independence from Mexico
June 14, 1846
February 2, 1848
November 27, 1858
June 23, 1950
Area
• Total
1,225,601 km2 (473,207 sq mi)
• Water (%)
8.99
Population
• 2014 estimate
83,484,232[3]
• 2010 census
74,564,185[4]
• Density
64.38/km2 (166.7/sq mi) (124th)
GDP (PPP) 2017 estimate
• Total
$5.820 trillion[5] (4th)
• Per capita
$51,603 [5] (25th)
GDP (nominal) 2017 estimate
• Total
$5.820 trillion[5] (4th)
• Per capita
$61,924 (7th)
Gini (2014) 0.478
low
HDI (2017) 0.929
very high · 3rd
Currency Sierran dollar ($) (KSD)
Time zone PST (UTC−8)
• Summer (DST)
MST (UTC−7)
Date format dd-mm-yyyy
Drives on the right
Calling code +1
Patron saint St. Junípero Serra, OFM
ISO 3166 code KS
Internet TLD .ks
Website
www.sierra.gc.ks
  1. Literally "Golden Kingdom"
  2. Does not include any territories and other unorganized lands
Zhongwen
This article contains Chinese text. Without proper rendering support, you may see question marks, boxes, or other symbols instead of Chinese characters.
Nihongo
This article contains Japanese text. Without proper rendering support, you may see question marks, boxes, or other symbols instead of kanji and kana.
Hangugeo-Chosonmal
This article contains Korean text. Without proper rendering support, you may see question marks, boxes, or other symbols instead of Hangul and Hanja.
Thai Alphabet Sample
This article contains Thai text. Without proper rendering support, you may see question marks, boxes, or other symbols instead of Thai script.

Sierra (Spanish: Sierra, Chinese: 內華達, Vietnamese: Dãy Núi, Korean: 공화국, Thai: ทิวเขา, Han: 美國, Japanese: シエラ王国, and Serran: Serran SSerran ESerran RSerran RSerran A) is the main constituent country of the Kingdom of Sierra, a sovereign nation comprising of Sierra and three other autonomous constituent countries: the Deseret, Hawaii, and New Mexico. Sierra is a federal parliamentary constitutional monarchy[6] which is located on the western coast of central North America. The nation consists of 23 provinces along the Pacific Ocean, 6 territories including the Baja California peninsula, the Samoan Islands, Easter Island, the Gilbert and Ellice Islands, and several isolated Pacific atolls. In addition, it controls 2 crown dependencies in the Yucatán Peninsula: the Yucatán and Cancún.[6] Sierra spans from the Cascade Range of the north to the fringes of the Basin and Range Province region at its eastern extremity. It shares borders with Rainier to the north, Jefferson and Brazoria to the east, and Mexico to the south. Excluding Sierra's unincorporated territories, Sierra proper has a total area of 473,207 square miles. Ranked 29th in total land area, this puts Sierra ahead of South Africa in terms of geographical size but smaller than Mali.[7] Sierra's largest population center is its capital, Porciúncula. Other major cities include San Diego, San Francisco City, Riverside, Phoenix, San Jose, Bernheim, Anaheim, New Rotterdam, and Little Gibraltar.

As a result of its unique history and culture, Sierra boasts one of the most ethnically diverse and multicultural nations in the world.[8] Gaining independence from Mexico in 1846 under the name the California Republic,[9] Sierra came to being under its current constitution through a compromise between Anglo-American settlers, Mexican-born Californios, and Jacobite royalists in 1858. With the California Gold Rush, immigration from the Americas, Asia, and Europe gave Sierra much more legitimacy and power over its territory. The Charter of 1950 made Sierra into a constituent country of the Kingdom, following the Deseret's and Hawaii's elevated autonomy.[10][11]

During its infancy, Sierra was beleaguered with a myriad of problems including logistical issues, inadequate transportation, war debt, rampant crime, and the lack of a large, professional military. Through comprehensive and decisive policymaking under the ministries of Sierra's first two prime ministers: Frederick Bachelor, Sr. and Richard Trist, coupled with continuous immigration from the Americas, Asia, and Europe, the nation's economy boomed, and several ambitious projects were undertaken (such as the Royal Monetary Authority of Sierra, the Sierran railroad system, and the Great Sierra Irrigation System), greatly improving the stability and growth of the young country.[12] By the late 19th century, Sierra had increased its power and global outreach by acquiring several island territories throughout the Pacific. It acquired the Deseret region from the former American breakaway state of Missouri in 1864 following an agreement between both countries for Sierra's involvement in the War of Contingency. Disagreements between the monarchists and republicans during the late 19th century devolved into the Sierran Civil War, a three-year conflict which reinforced the strength of Sierra and preserved the monarchy. Sierra's brief war with Spain and then the nation of Hani saw Sierra's permanent fixture in international politics as Sierra expanded. The early 20th century was a pivotal moment in Sierra's history as progressivism swept through the country, modernizing it in the process. This period of turbulent change also allowed the Sierran Cultural Revolution to come into fruition, drastically altering the country's culture and politics as the country moved towards a more ethnically diverse nation. During World War I, in the 20th century, Sierra joined with its Anglo-American neighbors in defeating the Central Powers. Following the Japanese preemptive attack on Pearl Harbor, a joint Anglo-American overseas base situated on Sierran land, Sierra entered the war, emerging as a rising power.[13] Its controversial involvement and participation in the Manhattan Project with the Anglo-American community and its leasing of land in the Great Basin for nuclear weapon testing held it at odds with its Asian allies and the general public.[14][15]

Following the end of World War II, Sierra realigned its foreign policy, working towards closer integration with its Anglo-American neighbors, joining the Conference of American States.[16] With McCarthyism on the rise across the continent, suspicions spread into Sierra, leading the government to take drastic measures in preventing communism at home and abroad, as evident of Sierra's involvement in the Korean War and the Vietnam War. Following the end of the Cold War, Sierra continued developing its rapidly growing economy to become the world's 4th largest economy in international trade and commerce.[5] The most recent financial crisis in 2008 briefly disrupted the continuous growth of Sierra and threw it into a recession. Since 2010, Sierra has recovered although faces new 21st century challenges including the rise of domestic Islamic extremism, anarchist movements, anti-monarchism, and international tensions. A coup d'état attempt by the Islamist terrorist organization, the Army of God caused massive panic and prompted the Sierran government to embolden its stance against terrorism.[17][18] A missile attack by Mexico on disputed Sierran territory ushered in the Baja California crisis, an ongoing conflict part of a much larger conflict. Part of the Trans-Pacific Allied Community and a supporter of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization, it is part of the global "pro-American" faction which consists of most of the world's developed liberal democracies. The national identity of Sierrans best considered through the question Americani vel non Americani?, Ameroskepticism, the resurgent republicanism that led to the abdication of King Smith II, and assassination of Prime Minister Steven Hong, and the devastating 2017 Pawnee earthquake, are other issues that confront modern Sierra.[19]

Etymology

Sierra Nevada

Sierra was named after the Sierra Nevada mountains as shown here in a view from Owens Valley.

The name "Sierra" derives from the same word found in the Spanish language. In Spanish, "Sierra" means mountain range.[20] Chosen and mentioned explicitly in the Constitution[21] in 1858, the founders of Sierra sought a deviation from the commonly used name up to that point which was California (which was also the namesake for Sierra's preceding government: the California Republic). Used incessantly by the American, British, and Mexican governments which were all deeply interested in maintaining a sphere of influence over Sierra, the term "California" embittered the new nation.[22] When there was call for a new constitution, many Californians felt the need for a new name alongside the constitution. Several names including Columbia and Pacifica were proposed although the name Sierra for the new country was first mentioned in a 1856 Porciúncula newspaper.[23] Named after the various mountain ranges found within Sierra including the Sierra Nevada, delegates to the constitutional convention almost universally supported and subsequently officiated the name Sierra.[22]

I was pleased knowing I took part in naming our beloved nation Sierra. It is a refreshing stand against the external forces that are obsessed with taking what is ours. It pleases our Spanish-speaking brothers whom understand it to mean "a range of mountain" [sic]. At the same time, even to the English-speaking people, the name evokes a sense of passion and romanticism—some manner of pride and sentiments for a rising kingdom. Perhaps all the world soon will admire and marvel at Sierra in all her majesty...the very utterance of her name will shake even the mountains that christened her.

Smith I (as Smith C. Miller), Papers to the Union, December 8, 1858

The official name, the "Kingdom of Sierra" is present on all official government documents and is responsible for the common abbreviation of Sierra as "KS" or "K.S." and refers to not only Sierra, but the Deseret, Hawaii, and New Mexico. Colloquially, the term "Kingdom of Sierra" and "Sierra" are interchangeable. Other named offered to Sierra include the "West Coast" (used by Americans) or "California" (the historical name for the coastal and western inland regions of Sierra). Regional names for specific areas in Sierra include "Nevada" for the Great Basin region and "Arizona" for the Sonora east region. Such names also appear on some government documents for statistical purposes including census reports.[24]

The common demonym for a citizen of Sierra is "Sierran". This demonym extends onto citizens and residents of Sierra's overseas territories who are by definition and by law, virtually full-fledged Sierran citizens.[25] The alternative spelling "Sierren" was sparingly used in early Sierran government documents[22] and civilian newspaper although the term in modern times dictate that it is archaic and obscure. Nicknames given to Sierrans include "Cados" (a corruption of avocado, a major export of Sierra), "Goldies", and the derogatory names: "Sand Yankees" or "Rice Yankees".[26]

In some languages, Sierra is called the "Golden Kingdom"[22] or other similar derivatives as is the case in one of Sierra's official languages, Chinese (in the Mandarin dialect) which is 黄金王国 (Huángjīn wángguó). The name is a reference to Sierra's 19th-century gold rush which attracted thousands of people throughout the world including China.[27]

History

Symbols of Sierra
Part of a series on the
History of Sierra
PRE-COLUMBIAN
Early Native Sierrans
SPANISH RULE
European exploration
Portolà expedition
Spanish mission system
Las Californias
MEXICAN RULE
Mexican War of Independence
California Trail
Mexican-American War
Independence
REPUBLIC
California Republic
Gold Rush
KINGDOM
1858 Constitution
Infancy
Sierran Civil War
War of Contingency
Second Industrial Revolution
Progressive Era
Sierran Cultural Revolution
World War I
Great Depression
World War II
1950 Charter
MODERN KINGDOM
Great Basin controversy/Cross-Pacific affair
Cold War
The Disturbances
Contemporary era
Global War on Terrorism
Baja California crisis
Second Cold War
Abdication of Smith II
Assassination of Steven Hong
2017 Pawnee earthquake

Prehistory

See also: History of Sierra before European settlement

Prior to European colonization and interference, there were more than 70 Native American tribes and bands living near the Pacific Southwest, Great Basin, or Sonora Desert regions.[28] Notable groups including the Chumash, Pomo, and the Navajo had complex and large organization within their tribes and frequently conducted trade and diplomacy with other tribes.[29][30]

European exploration and settlement

Around the turn of the 16th century, knowledge and interest of Sierra's location sparked in Spain thanks to the popular romance novel Las Sergas de Esplandián (The Adventures of Esplandián) by Spanish author Garci Rodríguez de Montalvo.[31] Montalvo's novel described a mythical island dubbed California which was inhabited by Amazon women warriors who possessed large swaths of gold and weapons.[32] When Spanish and Portuguese explorers explored the Baja California peninsula, the name California was used. This name came to refer all the unexplored territory on the North American West Coast including where most of present-day Sierra lies.[33]

Juan Rodriguez Cabrillo

Juan Rodriguez Cabrillo, the first European to explore the coast of Sierra

The first European to explore the Sierra coast is credited to Portuguese explorer João Rodrigues Cabrilho (Juan Rodriguez Cabrillo).[34] Commissioned by the Viceroy of New Spain, Cabrillo explored the bay and shores of present-day San Diego.[35] After his excursion at San Diego, Cabrillo continued northward to Point Reyes. After Cabrillo suffered a fatal accident at Catalina Island, interest in further exploration of California rescinded because there were no sights of any gold nor advanced Indian civilization as claimed by authors.[36] Nevertheless, Cabrillo claimed the lands for Spain by right of discovery.

In spite of diminished interest in Sierra, Spanish ships frequently traveled along the coast as a trade route to the Lan Na, a Spanish colony at the time. Active Spanish presence in Sierra would not occur for two more centuries however. There were only four more documented cases of Sierra's exploration prior to the establishment of the first Spanish mission on Baja California: English privateer Francis Drake (1579), Spaniard Sebastián Vizcaíno (1602), Dutch Hendrik Brouwer (1644), and French Louis Antoine de Bougainville (1767). Drake landed in an unknown location along the Sierra coast and claimed the land for England as "Nova Albion" (New England) while Vizcaíno traveled as far north as Monterey Bay and gave San Diego Bay its current name. Vizcaíno's positive accounts on both bays reignited Spanish interest. The expedition of Brouwer in northern Sierra laid the seeds of a Dutch colony that would later be known as New Holland. The arrival of Bougainville in 1767 marked the start of French presence in the region (as French California) prior to the start of serious colonial endeavors by Spain. Within a century after the expedition of Vizcaíno, the Spanish and Dutch began mapping and exploring Sierra's land through the Portolà expedition.

Spanish rule

Beginning in 1768, the Spanish formally institutionalized a local government over Sierra. By 1804, the Spanish divided Sierra into two administrative divisions: Alta California and Baja California as provinces of New Spain. Where Baja California consisted the Baja Peninsula, Alta California consisted essentially the entirety of Western North America with no explicit boundaries. Between 1768 and 1804, the Spanish funded trips including the Portolà and Anza expeditions to establish contact with the native Indians and gain further knowledge on the landscape of the provinces.

During the Portolà expedition, Junípero Serra helped found the mission system by erecting 9 missions along the Sierran coast. Subsequently, the Spanish continued building missions (eventually to a total of 21 missions) and began an aggressive approach towards the Indians by subjecting them to rule. The aim of the missions were to educate the Indians the culture and language of Spanish as well as the Catholic faith. In conjunction with the missions, the Spanish established presidios (forts) along the El Camino Real trail. The Spanish monarchy encouraged citizens to move and settle in Sierra and even offered large parcels of land for free. Foreigners were also allowed to secure land property provided they convert to Catholicism and accepted Spanish citizenship.

19th century

Mexican rule

Vaquero

During Mexican rule, many Californios lived as vaqueros.

In 1821, Mexico gained independence from Spain thereby receiving control over Sierra. The Mexican government was never stable enough to exert complete control over Sierra due to the frequent changes in government back in Mexico City. For the most part, the Mexican government preserved the traditional Spanish land system by offering ranchos to Mexican citizens who settled in Sierra. These people came to be known as Californios and exercised political autonomy to a great extent thanks to the Mexican government's inefficiency to collect taxes and the lack of enforcement of Mexican law across the vastly unincorporated territory. Local Mexican families grew powerful with their massive rancho estates and began to develop a strong desire to form their own country. During this time, American and British immigrants began moving in to Sierra en masse—often bringing along their families. They were greeted with hostility by the Mexican government which viewed the immigrants as squatters and intruders because many often came without being cleared by the government.

Independence

War of 1846

On June 1846, American and British immigrant rebelled against the local Mexican government, about a month after the United States declared war on Mexico. The government restricted their right to buy or rent land because of their illegal status and threatened to expel them from the land. Prior to the war, Mexico became increasingly concerned with the possibility of war with the United States because of the immigrants and the concurrent crisis in Brazoria. When the war broke out, the Mexican government decided to deport all foreigners out of California or risk invoking deadly force. Emboldened by the war and deeply dissatisfied with Mexican administration, the Californios, who were now looking for a way to create their own country, decided to join their Anglo neighbors and declared a new independent country known as the "California Republic". The United States government immediately recognized the California Republic and vowed to protect it from being subdued by the Mexican government. Many Americans viewed this as temporary and believed that by the war's end, the Californians would vote for annexation into the United States as Brazoria did. Indeed, California was highly sought for by both the American public and government who not only coveted the coastal lands and plains of California but were impressed upon with the ideas of manifest destiny. Similarly, the British government followed suit by entering the war with the hopes of legitimizing its stance in Western North America and to reaffirm its connection with overseas British settlers.

As the California Republic

Bear flag digital

Digital reproduction of the flag of the California Republic.

Mexico, overwhelmed with two foreign powers engaging war over a largely inefficient province, abandoned active campaigning in California and left the loyalists to fight for Mexico. The Californians pushed their way down to the sparsely populated Baja California peninsula and declared the entire land to be Californian soil. The Mexican army attempted to reverse the effects of Californian advancement in the Siege of La Paz but suffered spectacular losses. After Mexico City fell to the American forces, California signed the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo as a victorious party. The California Republic received not only Mexico's recognition for independence, but was awarded the land it took in the Baja Californian peninsula and the additional land in the Great Basin and Sonora Desert as specified through the Mexican Cession. Under the same document, the California Republic agreed to relinquish its claim over the northeastern part of the Mexican Cession to the United States. Today, the ceded land includes the states of Utah, Colorado, and Wyoming.

In exchange for the gains, the Californian government agreed to pay Mexico a "grievance tribute" every year for the next 50 years. Fearing the possibility of a Mexican backlash in the near future and without financial resources, the California Republic granted the United States military unrestricted access thus rendering the Republic a protectorate. The British government offered additional support but was prevented due to the American Monroe Doctrine. Mexico, to poor and unstable to protect its northern claims, avoided what would have been a disastrous two-way war with the United States, Britain, and the Californian rebels.

The California Republic continued to rely heavily on American support although asserted its independence by blatantly rejecting twelve instances where the United States proposed annexation similarly to how it did to Brazoria. The American government honored each rejection and was able to continue exercising it rights to unrestricted movement within the Republic. The failed expectation of California joining the United States angered Americans who believed the war was fought for the purposes of acquiring California. Only about one-fourth of the Mexican Cession was given to the Americans while the rest were given to the Californians. American interest in pressuring California to join persisted for years and many claim that had the sectional issue of slavery in America not been present, the American government may have forcibly annexed California with little resistance. The hypothetical addition of California would pose the problem of allowing it to become a free state or a slave state–an issue that was considered not worth the risk of fighting for. The treaty essentially secured California's independence and put an end to any realistic approach of an American California.

Gold Rush of 1849

With the war over, the Californian government struggled with finances as it accepted huge loans from the United States to pay Mexico. This situation was no longer apparent when the California Gold Rush of 1849 began. People from all across the world came in large numbers seizing the opportunity to find the precious metals. The California Republic's population saw it explode from 400,000 to 1 million. Townships were formed and the government quickly contained the rush by selling plots of land for settlers to stakeout. Gold rushers were encouraged to bring their families and settle in the Republic which promised large plots of land, good weather, and abundance in resources. Soon enough, companies and businesses were established particularly around the Sacramento and San Francisco areas where the gold was predominantly found. While northern California continued growing thanks to gold, southern California experienced its own economic boom. Rich and fertile land allowed thousands of settlers to grow various crops including citrus fruits.

Constitution of 1858

Constitution of Sierra

The original copy of the Sierran Constitution.

With the Gold Rush, the California Republic saw the reality of establishing complete sovereignty more apparent than before. With that, the Republic needed to put an end to its dependency on the United States and Mexico, and to the lesser extent, Britannia. While it controlled the otherwise hectic, often unregulated activities related to the gold rush, the government was still weak and unorganized. There was only one civil code and a rubber stamp legislature headed by a commune of the original Californian rebels. Many areas had no local government and public utilities were often absent.

Calls for a new constitution and effective organization prompted the creation of the Californian Constitutional Convention. Delegates from northern and southern California met at Sonoma to discuss the future of the republic between 1856 to 1858. During this time period, different views and ideologies conflicted. Many Americans felt the desire to continue carrying the tradition of American federalism and liberty while the Mexicans favored their own concept of government which heavily emphasized ranchos and Spanish code. Still, British royalists idealized establishing an American monarchy similar to that of Britannia. The ideas of a monarchy shocked and disgusted many Americans who were reminded of their national background which was built on the rejection of monarchy. However, at the same time, nostalgic romanticism helped allow the new country more readily accept and become a monarchy provided that its power was checked, that there would be a popularly electable presidential figure that held real responsibility over government, and that the royal family would have no direct connection to any of the royal houses in Europe. On November 27, 1858, the Constitution of 1858 was adopted and the California Republic was renamed officially as the Kingdom of Sierra. The House of Columbia was created and Smith I (Smith C. Miller), one of the leading founders of Sierra was crowned as the first king of Sierra and a descendant of Charles I of England, the last king of Britain.

Infancy

Among the first challenges the new kingdom faced was converting the hundreds of thousand square miles of backwater and unregulated lands into territory where the government had jurisdiction. Although many Sierrans advocated their own country, a great deal continued following local, unwritten laws which varied from town to town. In order to help consolidate power, the Kingdom was divided into 23 separate provinces each headed by a royally appointed Lord Superintendent and a popularly elected governor, and boundaries based on either existing communities or the ranchos of the wealthy Californios (the latter being the case for nearly all the eastern desert provinces).

Another major issue the kingdom suffered was the lack of a standing army. During the rebellion, rebels joined disorganized and poorly armed bands which often had their own motives. During the age of the republic, these bands persisted and served as the government's de jure military although the lack of cohesion and unity troubled the government which feared the bands would conflict and start a civil war. The kingdom felt the need of a united military force which would owe complete loyalty and allegiance to the Crown. The Sierran Crown Armed Forces was created and generals from Europe were invited to help train recruits.

As it was in the United States, industrialization became crucial to the success of Sierra. Many towns throughout Sierra were connected by historic Spanish roads which were outdated and poorly paved. Sierran lawmakers with dialogue with the United States commissioned an international railroad system to help ease travel and trade. Telegraph networks were established and factories began replacing some of the old mining towns in northern Sierra.

Sierra also endured a period of increasingly deadly confrontation with various Native American tribes—particularly those in the Nevada and Arizona regions. In order to resolve conflict, the Compact Indian-Sierran Friendship Act paved the way for the modern Sierran Indian reservation system. With continued development, the sparse lands of Sierra became more and more industrialized with as much as 500 new townships created each year between 1859 to 1872.

SierraMulticulturePoster

A poster promoting a pro-imperialist foreign policy for Sierra.

When the American Civil War broke out, runaway slaves and other African Americans fled to Sierra to escape conflict or capture. Slavery was explicitly prohibited by the Sierran constitution and African American immigrants were able to fare better with Sierra's multicultural society than their American counterparts. However, like other non-white minorities at the time, they still faced discrimination and often worked in lower-end jobs and had to form their own towns.

Sierra also experienced a rash of imperialism which saw the establishment of colonies in the Pacific Ocean. The first territory under the imperialist age established was the Gilbert and Ellice Islands in 1861. The following year, the territory of Rapa Nui was declared after Sierran businessmen and settlers drove out Peruvian pirates and befriended the local islanders. The rationale behind Sierran imperialism was to advance the interests of Sierran businesses, convert nonbelievers to Christianity, and increase the political power of the Kingdom. Sierra unintentionally positioned itself into the international spotlight following its decision to annex Hawaii and the eastern portion of the Samoan Islands—two political entities that had foreign interests there (American, British, and German). Since then, all of Sierra's acquisitions have remained part of the Union without interruption. The Pacífico territories, which were acquired in the aftermath of the Mexican-American War are disputed by Mexico which has claimed the peninsula since 1957 following regime change.

War of Contingency

Sierran Civil War
Isaiah Landon

San Joaquinian senator Isaiah Landon led the Republican insurrection against the Kingdom during the Sierran Civil War.

Domestic political tensions intensified in the early 1870s between the Royalists and Democratic-Republicans under the administration of Prime Minister Ulysses Perry. A bitter political opponent to the King, Perry was nearly successful in legally deposing and abolishing the monarchy with a Democratic-Republican majority in both houses of the Parliament. Perry was eventually assassinated while still in office in 1873, causing public unrest among supporters whom believed was done at the order of the King. Isaiah Landon, a friend of Perry and member of the Senate, called for an armed revolt, triggering the Sierran Civil War which pitted monarchists loyal to the King and the government against angered farmers and radical republicans seeking to reinstate the California Republic. The war, which lasted for three years, intensified in its later stages but had an adverse effect on the economy and the morale of the people. Eventually, the fervor of the republican movement waned as Landon's military strategy grew increasingly brutal and interest in the status quo grew. Landon was eventually captured and forced to surrender, marking the end to the war. In response to the war, Parliament passed various laws addressing some of the republicans' grievances and permitting secession through the Fourth Amendment. Landon was placed on house arrest for the rest of his life while other leaders were sentenced to death or life imprisonment. With the Democratic-Republicans pacified from the scandals surrounding Perry along with Smith's continued cooperation to cede some of his powers, Sierra achieved a time of stability and growth.

Labor union and nativist movements

With the influx of skilled immigrants from all parts of the world, labor unions and associations were formed to help protect individuals' rights. San Francisco enjoyed international recognition for its manufacturing and handiwork industries. Large and powerful unions helped influence Sierran Parliament pass laws promoting fairer working conditions including 8-hour work, paid leave, and more. At the same time, nativism spread with particular scrutiny towards the Chinese. Organizations pressed for anti-Chinese legislation and often led nationwide beatings and destruction of Chinese-owned businesses. Despite this, immigration from China and other parts of Asia continued and the government of Sierra passed no major legislation barring their entry. In fact, Sierra actively sought to establish diplomatic relations with Asia beginning with sending its first diplomat to China in 1863. The government encouraged immigrants to naturalize and bring their families—an attitude that countered that of most of the other Anglo-American nations in the East at the time and which infuriated many nativists.

20th century

Sierra in Hani

Technological Revolution and the Gilded Age

Toward the later end of the 19th century, under the prime years of King Smith I, Sierra experienced an economical explosion and expansion under the Second Industrial Revolution. As more cities and towns were established, the First Transcontinental Railroad was opened in 1869 linking San Francisco City to the North American East Coast. Following this, more railroad networks were established domestically and internationally. Coal mining and steel production increased alongside the rise of manufacturing factories as Sierra industrialized. More Sierrans switched from agrarian work in favor of jobs offered in manufacturing. Working conditions improved as workers unionized and fought for better treatment and benefits. New towns in unused land allowed the construction of small businesses and larger individual housing units expanding the Sierran middle class.

Shift in cultural, social, and political attitudes

Comparison of Western and Oriental Thought

A Fifth Edition copy of the Comparison of Western and Oriental Thought by Mark Culler, one of the most defining and influential literary works in Sierran history.

As the middle class ballooned and the working conditions of blue-collar workers improved, concern for social conditions and attitudes grew. Many urban communities were unsanitary, had unstable buildings, and home to thousands of neglected homeless. Sierra witnessed the rise of monopolies which starved out competition and drove small businesses out. The call for antitrust laws were among the first movements that began Sierra's "Progressive Era", often called so because of the rise of progressivism. Many Sierran Progressives favored banning liquor, extending the right to vote for women, welfare programs for the poor, and punishing corrupted politicians.

Sierran Cultural Revolution

At this same time, new attitudes toward race and culture began to slowly emerge as both white and colored Progressives pushed for minority civil rights. Extended exposure to the growing Asian communities in Sierra had led to frequent race riots and other violent confrontations by the white majority. When Asian immigrants first arrived, white working class laborers were fearful that the foreigners would steal their jobs for menial wages. Sierran labor unions were staunchly opposed towards extending membership to its Asian counterparts and often organized violence against Asian and Hispanic workers competing with white workers.

When Asian Sierrans began entering into the professional field, many whites found themselves depending on their Eastern neighbors as doctors, lawyers, and teachers. Interest and fascination in East Asian culture led to some whites accepting their neighbors and even adopting some customs. In 1906, anti-miscegenation laws were abolished and the Sierran government permitted interracial marriages. The number of white-Asian and other mixed-race households only further allowed a shift in mainstream Sierran culture.

Reactionary groups including the Ku Klux Klan and nativists were outraged and a counter-cultural movement spawned. This movement stressed on white supremacy, the preservation of the "purity" of the white race, and flatly rejected the cultural changes. In protest, many refused to eat ethnic foods, raided homes by stomping on the carpet floors with muddy shoes, and burned books related to the pro-change movement. Nationwide protests with up to as much as 15,000 in one city marched demanding the government to re-institute anti-miscegenation laws and prevent the further advancement of minority civil rights. In some extreme cases, reports of lynching occurred and countless of incidents of properties owned by ethnic minorities and their white allies being vandalized or destroyed. Progressives openly fought this movement and urged the government to continue its new policies.

A huge victory for racial issues in Sierra occurred on July 8, 1905 when King Lewis I declared his support for the advancement of racial minorities' civil rights and embracing new cultural ideas. While the declaration in itself was symbolic, it shocked the world including Sierra's neighbors, especially the United Commonwealth, which still had policies actively discriminating minorities including Jim Crow and the Chinese Exclusion Act.

Reactionary protests and violence would continue on for decades but would become increasingly stigmatized by the general public as law enforcement cracked down on "violent prone" organizations and voters electing Asian, black, and Hispanic politicians into offices. Popular literature, progressive movements, and scholars began promoting a new form of culture infusing traditional Anglo-Saxon Protestant values with East Asian neo-Confucian values.

The most famous book that helped define modern Sierran culture is Comparison of Western and Oriental Thought by a sociologist named Mark Culler who noted several similarities between Western and Eastern ideas and advocated the "refinement of present-day society" by combining elements from both societies. Culler's work and similar books helped shape mainstream Sierran culture as readers began adopting customs recommended by the movement.

While complete transformation of Sierran culture from a predominantly American Anglo-Saxon one to a Western-Eastern fusionist culture was not achieved instantaneously, historians have attributed this time to have been a key, pivotal moment in Sierran history. Near universal acceptance in Sierra's new culture would not come until the late 1960s but it is this relatively rapid change that has perplexed many sociologists and historians for years ever since then. Modern historians both Sierran and non-Sierran have dubbed this change the "Sierran Cultural Revolution", a name that was not used to describe the event until 1960 when the effects of the change had solidified by then. An example of acculturation en masse, others who have been critical of Sierra view the change as cultural appropriation.

Later social movements

Feminism also became popular as women began participating more in politics and life outside the home. The desire of many women to join the workforce instead of simply being homemakers shocked traditionalists who held Victorian perceptions of women. Powerful organizations and coalitions formed including the National Women's Advancement Association which demanded suffrage and equal working opportunities as men. Many women's organizations were also progressive in general and pushed for better treatment of the homeless and more funding towards educating children. Women and racial minorities succeeded in receiving the right to vote through the Fifth Amendment in 1911.

A food stamp program established in 1909 became the first significant social welfare program in Sierra. A Medicare program was created shortly the following year but the Sierran welfare state would not fully develop until after World War II. Regardless, the early programs assisted millions of Sierrans and they boosted popularity and faith in the Sierran government.

Unlike the United Commonwealth and Dixie, the progressives failed to outlaw alcohol although came extremely narrowly close to succeeding in 1923 when Parliament voted 146-148 in favor of alcohol prohibition by two votes. The temperance movement believed that alcohol was a social vice that was incompatible with both "old" and "new" Sierran society. After this intensely narrow vote, similar proposals arose continuously for the next 20 years as libertarians and the alcohol industry lobbyists fought hard against progressives and religious conservatives.

World War I

Sierran shell production

Sierran workers producing shells in a factory for the war effort.

On July 28, 1914, World War I when the Austro-Hungarian Empire started their invasion of Serbia. Almost immediately upon receiving news, King Lewis I declared that Sierra would be neutral, as the other Anglo-American states had done, although it would be prepared to honor virtually any petition or request for humanitarian aid and food supplies to both sides. In practice, Sierra sold thousands of military equipment and war material to Britain, Japan. However, when it became apparent that Germany had continued to attack civilian ships, and an incriminating telegram sent by German diplomats to Mexico proposed attacking Sierra and the rest of Anglo-America, Sierra and her neighbors joined the war, and rallied together in mutual defense. The war quickly turned to the Allies' favor with the Anglo-American intervention, and the war ended in November 1918.

Great Depression and the rise of modern culture

The Great Depression did not drastically affect Sierra's economy. It dropped by 7% and was largely saved from its devastating effects through an economic policy of massive deficit spending and the devaluation of the Sierran dollar. Sierra managed to return to pre-Depression levels by 1934 and propelled as World War II began and Allied nations were seeking war material. Thousands of Okies immigrated to Sierra during the mid-1930s to escape the Dust Bowl and the Great Depression adding more workforce into Sierra. To prevent the overflow of American immigrants, Sierra enforced its first immigration quota to limit the number of Americans allowed into Sierra annually. This was the only case in Sierran history where the government had to enforce such a quota, which was lifted in 1942. In practice, the quota was largely nonenforceable and American immigrant flow continued.

As the Progressives continued achieving legislative victories in Parliament, Sierra began officially embracing a policy of racial and religious tolerance. Sierra condemned the Confederate States' legal treatment towards its black community and found it hypocritical of America to claim that "All men are created equal". This policy was a greenlit for a second large immigration wave into Sierra. Ethics and customs outlined in the pro-cultural-fusionist movement of the 1900s had already been adopted by Sierrans of all races en masse. "New Nationalism" was the term coined in 1933 to describe the birth of a new distinct culture which successfully integrated the "best of two worlds": Western and Eastern thought.

The invention of the television, radio, telephone, automobile, and airplane all helped advance Sierran ideas. Economic and technological prosperity gave Sierrans new confidence in their own independence as a nation. Since Sierra's creation, many Sierrans still felt that their sovereignty and political culture was threatened by the United Commonwealth and Hudson, the two dominating states at the time, and in even more extreme cases, perceived Sierra to be merely a puppet state. The appreciation for cultural values, toleration, egilatarianism, and technology made Sierrans proud and even condescending towards their neighbors.

World War II

As it did in World War I, Sierra declared open neutrality at the outbreak of World War II. Initially, at the beginning, Sierra continued its practice of selling weapons to various countries including the Axis member Empire of Japan, which Sierra maintained friendly relations at the time. As the Japanese expanded further into the war, which would threaten Sierra's island territories, the Sierran government grew increasingly worrisome. Concerned with the direction of the war, Sierra joined with Brazoria, Dixie, Hudson, Missouri, New England, and the United Commonwealth in the North American Defense Organization (NADO). NADO was a formal military alliance that was formed to allow jointly-controlled bases and annual military practices. Fears that Japan, which held a controversial vision for the Pacific, would extend to an invasion of Sierra persuaded the Sierran government to reevaluate its position in World War II. When Pearl Harbor, a Sierran base which was leased under the NADO program, was attacked by Japan, Sierra declared war on the Axis powers, and joined both theaters. Like its closest ally Brazoria, the Sierran government and public trusted affirmed loyalty of the Japanese Sierrans community and did not subject them to internment camps which some of the other Anglo-American states had done. However, travel to Japan and other Asian countries was restricted for the entirety of the war. Thousands of Sierrans and Anglo-American soldiers were deployed to fight to counter the advances of the Japanese and the Germans, and over 11,000 lost their lives either in battle or as prisoners of war.

Joint American nuclear testing

Trinity bomb

A colored shot of the Trinity nuclear bomb test explosion. Sierra, Brazoria, Hudson, and the United Commonwealth collaborated together in nuclear weapon testing during World War II.

After all of Anglo-America joined the Pacific Theater of the war, the Sierran government collaborated with the Appalachian, Brazorian, and Hudsonian governments in the Manhattan Project. When asked to provide land for nuclear testing, Sierra agreed and provided Groom Lake as the primary testing location for nuclear weapons. Scientists from Sierra's top universities and companies were urged to contribute to the project in the name of Sierra. Sierra's active involvement in the Project would not be revealed to the public until after the end of World War II which resulted in the Great Basin controversy and a severe blow in the trust of many Sierrans.

Project Specter, the first nuclear weapon to detonate in Sierra took place in Groom Lake, Clark (known today as "Area 51"). A simple plutonium implosion, Sierra converted the Groom Lake Military Base into one of the nation's largest and most restricted facilities. At the same time of the Manhattan Project, Sierra began researching into reconnaissance technology. Blueprints and designs of early prototypes would later be used to create Cold War-era aircraft such as the U-2 and SR-71. World War II came to end after the atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki forced Japan to surrender.

Pre-Cold War complications

Public knowledge regarding Sierra's involvement in the Manhattan Project and the existence of the Groom Lake Military Base enraged many Sierrans who felt the lack of transparency was not only troubling but dangerous. The recently crowned Queen Angelina I and her late father never received any information regarding the project which further worsened the situation. The queen demanded a tribunal regarding key Manhattan Project Sierran officials and called for greater openness between the government and its people. Also enraged were members of the Japanese Sierrans who felt that Sierra's involvement in the project made it directly at fault with the great tragic bombings in Japan.

Public view towards the United Commonwealth and other Anglo-American nations including Brazoria plummeted in response to the controversy. Some Sierrans called for absolute military nonintervention and others even promoted isolationism. In order to appease the public, the Sierran government officially issued an apology to the Japanese nation for its connection with the atomic bombings and declassified many Sierran documents in connection to the Project. Both of these actions were heavily criticized by the Appalchian government which claimed it compromised Anglo-America's safety including Sierra's. The Appalachian government accused Sierra of being too easily swayed by popular opinion which made it weak and vulnerable. These inflammatory remarks further embittered Sierrans who called for Sierra's distancing from the United Commonwealth whom they perceived as their traditional rival. The United Commonwealth's bold proposal to purchase uninhabited land from Sierra for several billions added further insult to injury to the Sierran public. In response, the Kingdom of Sierra decided to open up diplomatic relations with the communist nations, the Soviet Union and the China.

Cold War (1950s-80s)

Angelina I

Queen Angelina I reigned during the entirety of the Cold War and into the early 21st century until her death in 2005.

During the Cold War, Sierra joined the Non-Aligned Movement and held simultaneous relations with both main rivals, the United Commonwealth and the Soviet Union (albeit a strained one with the former nation). Still, while Sierrans were wary of the United Commonwealth, and to a lesser extent, the other Anglo-American states which they regarded as the Commonwealth's "puppets", they were more worried about the Soviet Union and China which were staunchly communist and authoritarian. While Sierra was not able to join the North Atlantic Treaty Organization, it frequently exchanged information and ideas with the body. Sierra's government justified maintaining friendly relations with both sides as a form of nonintervenionism and an opportunity to cultivate friendship and economic endeavors. Following the death of Joseph Stalin, Sierra established closer relations with Russia and Prime Minister Henry Faulkner made a state visit to Moscow in 1954 to meet with Russian prime minister Nikita Khrushchev. In 1963, Sierra and the Soviet Union signed an economic agreement which allowed the Soviet government to purchase large amounts of wheat and other agricultural products for relatively low prices.

Shortly after the end of the Chinese Civil War, Sierra was among the first non-communist nations to recognize the People's Republic of China early in the year 1950. This action was meant with backlash especially from Sierra's Chinese community which believed that the Republic of China was the sole legitimate government of China. Despite protest, Sierra proceeded to form friendly relations with China. The Cultural Revolution was heavily protested by Sierrans who felt that Sierra had no place in recognizing a totalitarian regime. The Sierran government de-emphasized its ties with China for the next 10 years while the worst of communist repression past. A similar economic agreement to the Soviet-Sierran agriculture sales was made with China during this time however.

As the Cold War heated, the United Commonwealth increased its pressure to subvert Sierra into its sphere of influence. Sierra joined the North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD) in 1959 after it felt that a Soviet nuclear attack on Anglo-America would naturally harm Sierra as well. It later joined the Conference of American States as well in 1965, which was a significant development in Anglo-American history as it signaled a Sierra whose policies were more receptive and aligned with her neighbors. During the Korean War and the Vietnam War, Sierra joined and helped Anglo-America defend Korea and South Vietnam. Sierra accepted the diaspora from exiled Chinese political dissidents, Vietnamese boat people from the Indochina refugee crisis, and the Korean diaspora who fled the repressive Korean regimes. Despite participating in both wars, conscription was never activated, and Sierra received a substantial amount of draft dodgers from the United Commonwealth and Confederate States during where it was practiced and allowed most of them free entry.

Like many other developed nations, Sierra was extremely dependent on Middle Eastern oil to support its economy and car culture. Sierra was saved from the catastrophic 1973 oil crisis by completely abstaining from any involvement in the Yom Kippur War, condemning Israel occupation of Palestinian lands, and supporting Palestinian self-determination. As later reviewed in 1980s-era reports, Arab members of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries were close to including extending their embargo on Sierra because they believed that Sierra was sympathetic to the Israeli government and was too close with the United Commonwealth. In reality, this was not the case as Sierra made active attempts to distance itself from American influence and maintain international neutrality. While Japan, a neutral nation in the conflict received the embargo, Sierra did not as it already indicated a pro-Arab message prior to OPEC's decision to extend the embargo beyond the United Commonwealth. After the crisis ended, the call for domestic alternative energy in Sierra exploded out of fear that another oil crisis could this time affect and devastate the Sierran economy. On October 3, 1975, Parliament commissioned the Nuclear Energy Act which called for a large emphasis on using nuclear power for electricity. Research and adoption of alternative fuels for automobiles also underwent way in Sierra causing a shift on petroleum dependency.

Vietnam War protesters

Sierran counterculturalists protesting American involvement in the Vietnam War in Porciúncula.

So-called "culture wars" erupted in the 1970s and 80s with a new shift in society toward cultural permissiveness. Issues including abortion, homosexuality, and second-wave feminism divided the nation although not to the extent it had in some of the other Anglo-American states. Becoming more traditional and conservative as a result of a combination between Western Protestant and Eastern Confucian cultures, many "new" traditionalists opposed new ideas that mostly arose from younger Sierrans. They viewed the socially liberal movements as a threat to Sierran society and a direct attack to the harmonic unity of the nation. Moderates sought middle ground by claiming tolerance for another's choices were compatible and essential in Sierran culture. Differing views continued to clash until about the 1990s when libertarianism became a popular new trend in Sierran ideology. By 2014, Cold War-era issues such as same-sex marriage would be legalized in 13 of the 23 provinces, abortion in 12, and marijuana in all the provinces. A massive "moral decay" which would destroy Sierra's values did not occur as most Sierrans simply believed in extending tolerance and support for less traditional issues. The alcohol drinking limit in 1982 was dropped to 16 but alcohol consumption did not spike as conservatives claimed. In response to legal-sanctioned policies, conservatives were expected to defend their views through social campaigns and media rather than parliamentary lobbying.

Vietnam War

With the outbreak of the Vietnam War, Sierra joined after the CAS deemed the Gulf of Tonkin incident was a valid justification for military intervention, and the United Commonwealth led the initial entry. At first, Sierra provided medical and logistical support for the anti-communist, pro-South Vietnam side, but by 1966, it had joined the war as well. Massive protests were held in response to Sierra's involvement and when atrocities such as the Mỹ Lai Massacre came to light. Many Sierrans opposed interference with regional conflicts and demanded an end to the war, and to leave the CAS. As much as 18,000 non-Sierran Anglo-American draft dodgers fled to Sierra to avoid punishment or conscription into the war, and less than 5% of able-bodied young adult males enlisted to join the war effort. Toward the end of the war, most of the dodgers returned back to the country of origin, mostly either the United Commonwealth or the Confederate States. Both during and after the war, Sierra welcomed refugees and boat people from North Vietnam, South Vietnam, Laos, and Cambodia.

Post-Cold War

Following the fall of the Soviet Union, Sierra witnessed the rise of its neighbor, the new unchallenged superpower, the United Commonwealth, buttressed by the CAS with Sierra itself a constituent part of. The new Sierran prime ministerial administration decided to adopt a new foreign policy which fully committed stronger ties with the member states of CAS and the United Commonwealth. Relations warmed when both Sierra and the UC exchanged state visits in the year 1992. Sierra's economy exploded with the development of the Internet, rising importance of Sierran commercialism, strong housing markets, and sound business-friendly policies. For the first time in nearly 150 years, the Sierran Crowned Armed Forces was deployed for military purposes into the Gulf War. When Iraq invaded Kuwait, the League of Nations called for universal condemnation of the war. The pro-Kuwaiti coalition was formed and Sierra sent 5,300 special forces to defend Kuwait.

The rise of the Internet and increasing importance of digital technology helped Sierra's economy explode in the mid-1990s which later came to be known as the dot-com bubble. The real estate market expanded and suburban expansion allowed more Sierrans to purchase their own homes away from the city. The bubble burst shortly into the year 2000 and 32% of Sierran "dot com businesses" filed for bankruptcy as a direct result of the burst. By 2003, Sierra's economy recovered with extensive economic reforms, stimulus plans, and strong domestic market and returned to its fast economic rates.

Contemporary history

Flag of the GRJM

Flag of the domestic Islamist terrorist organization, the Army of God which gained attention after its connection with the coup d'état attempt of 2014.

After the September 11 attacks, with Porciúncula itself attacked, Sierra stepped up its national security and continued its commitment of supporting the "great Anglo-American alliance" that was the CAS, although Ameroskepticism resurged among Sierrans. When the United Commonwealth launched the War on Terror, Sierra agreed to join and deployed 8,000 soldiers. Sierra participated in the controversial Iraq War and the Afghanistan War between 2003 and 2012 suffering as much as 293 casualties in both wars—one of the highest out of all members of the International Security Assistance Force. Sierra's military activities garnered negative reaction by Sierrans who were becoming increasingly agitated by Sierra's direction into international politics. Anarchist movements and anti-monarchy protests emerged but the most famous reaction to Sierra's 21st century military campaigns was the rise of Islamic terrorism which grew in Sierra. The Sierran government responded by passing controversial surveillance laws including phone tapping to discover and apprehend would-be terrorists.

In spite of political and security turmoil, the Sierran economy steadily rose until the year 2008 after the Great Repression hit the international community including Sierra. After suffering with the closure of one bank and several companies, Sierra recovered through government intervention and intensive moderation of Sierra's debts and funds. Sierra stabilized again by 2010 although experienced modest economic growth (3%) as opposed to growth from the pre-crisis years (4-8%).

Early morning on August 18, 2014, an armed group of 300 militants opened fire and attempted to storm the Occidental Palace and the Parliament building. Sierran local authorities temporarily starved off the militants before Sierra's military reserves could come and react. By 1 pm, local time, the situation ended with 86 casualties (53 militant deaths, 20 Sierran police officers, 11 soldiers, and 2 civilians) and most of the militants captured. Later during the evening, the Army of God, a terrorist organization claimed responsibility for the coup attempt and swore for more attacks on Sierrans. The Sierran government declared a state of emergency, lockdowned several cities, and changed the Security National Alert Condition (SNACON) to "2" for the first time in Sierran history. Following the attack, security heightened and additional videos threatening to overthrow the government went viral.

On August 28, a plot to assassinate and behead the monarch on live television was foiled with the arrest of 12 Saudi-born Sierran citizens including two who were directly connected to the earlier coup attempt. Continued threats of a second attack materialized again on August 14 when five car bombings throughout Sierra including Porciúncula claimed the lives of 21 Sierrans. Following the bombings, the Army of God claimed responsibility and declared that it was open war with the government with the intention to establish a caliphate. While this would technically mean that Sierra has a civil war, the Sierran government declared that continued provocation would indeed be met with swift retribution but assured the international community that it would prevent the security crisis from expanding into a full-blown conflict.

Later that year, an unrelated confrontation occurred between Sierra and Mexico. On October 4, 2014, Mexico directed several missiles to the Sierran Baja city of La Paz, killing 32 Sierrans. Immediately, Sierra and the CAS perceived this as a direct act of aggression and demanded an immediate termination of its claim over Sierran territory, financial reparations for damages, and a formal apology. Following Mexico's refusal to concede to the demands, on behalf of Sierra, the CAS issued anultimatum that would include a League of Nations-led military campaign against Mexico if Mexico continued to provoke "acts of aggression".

On April 18, 2015, the Sierran market crashed following the government's announcement of deception by the Royal Monetary Authority surrounding the country's inflation rate. As opposed to the 1.5% claimed, the actual inflation rate was around 5%. With the Sierran economy exploding up until that point with low interest rates, unrestrained growth, and unchecked practices, economists had anticipated the economy to collapse into a recession due to a bubble burst before. In an effort to protect the Sierran economy as well as the international market, the Hoosier government which housed the National Reserve System bailed the Sierran government by injecting tens of billions into the Sierran economy. In addition, the Sierran government devalued the Sierran dollar for the first time since 2008 by officially pegging it to the United Commonwealth dollar, considered a more stable dollar for the volatile Sierran market. On April 25, the crisis was declared averted as the Sierran economy began to recover and creditor confidence restored. The Hong Administration, especially the Royal Monetary Authority's board came under scrutiny surrounding their failure to report Sierra's true inflation rate and its excessively manipulative tactics to control the economy. On April 30, the Parliament launched a joint committee investigation to address the scandal and to also consider having Sierra join the National Reserve System.

On June 6, three locations in San Diego, Laguna were bombed by agents connected to the Mexican government, triggering a crisis that eventually led the Kingdom to war with Mexico a week later through Operation Biting Dust. Response was delayed as the Mexico Resolution, the legal document that would have authorized the Sierran government to use military action against Mexico, went through parliamentary procedure slowly due to hesitation among some members of Parliament. When it reached the floor on June 12 for voting, it was defeated and would require King Smith II to issue a controversial edict to get Sierra into war. After intense fighting for 1½ months, Sierra and allied forces were victorious following Mexico City's fall in mid-July and the capture of many prominent Mexican politicians. However, on June 21, Smith II formally abdicated in response to mounting opposition for his controversial edict and Angelina II succeeded him as Queen.

Geography, climate, and environment

Satellite image of Sierra

A satellite image showing Sierra along with the rest of North America.

The land area of Sierra is 388,308 square miles with only 5.47% of that being water and lies entirely on the North American continent with the exception of a few offshore islands including the Channel Islands which are less than 30 miles off the coast of southern Sierra. Sierra is the 29th largest nation in the world in terms of total land area making it larger than countries such as Egypt and Sweden. It is the largest of the three constituent countries of the Kingdom of Sierra.

Significant internal water sources include Lake Tahoe, Salton Sea, Lake Mead, the Colorado River, and the Santa Ana River. Desert regions of the southern Sierran coast, the Great Basin, and eastern Sonoran regions are generally dry all year and yield little if no water sources within hundreds of miles.

Map of Sierra (California-Nevada-Arizona regions)

Broadest groupings of the geographic regions of Sierra

Sierra is separated into three geographically distinct regions: "California", "Nevada", and "Arizona" with the Californian region being the largest and most diverse of the regions. These divisions are understood primarily based on physical separation of mountain ranges, proximity to the ocean, river lines, and climate zones. The most prominent geophysical separation between the California region from Nevada is the Sierra Nevada which begin just around Lake Tahoe and descends southward near the Mojave Desert. The Sierra Nevada features the tallest mountain in Sierra: Mount Whitney which stands at 14,505 feet (4,421 m). Separating what would otherwise be a continuous desert region between California and Arizona is the Colorado River which feeds into the Gulf of California in Mexico.

Map of Sierra (Unofficial regions)

Cultural regions of Sierra

Within the California region, it can further be divided into four main subregions: the Pacific Northwest, the Styxie, Central Sierra, and the Southwest Corridor. Central Sierra is generally flat and is home to the Central Valley which is surrounded by the Pacific Coastal Ranges to the west, the Sierra Nevada to the east, Cascade Range to the north, and the Tehachapi Mountains to the south. Fertile and leveled, Central Valley is the center of Sierran agricultural industries. In Northern California, the border is limited at the base of the Cascade Mountains which extend to the Alyeskan state of Oregon. Here, it is dominated by cool and moderate weather. The region features two main valleys: Sacramento Valley and San Francisco Valley with major river sources of the same namesake. In the Southwest Corridor, the infamous Mediterranean climate owes its weathers to its proximity to the Pacific Ocean, the eastern inland deserts, and several small mountain ranges. The south-central desert is called the Mojave which extends into the Arizona region. Northeast of the Mojave lies Death Valley, which contains the lowest and hottest place in all of North America, the Badwater Basin at −282 feet (−86 m). The desert regions are hot and arid year-round and receive very low precipitation.

Map of Sierra (Geographic regions)

Narrower groupings of the geographic regions of Sierra

Nearly the entire region of Nevada lies within the Basin and Range Province which features many north-south mountain ranges and valleys. The northern portions of Nevada constitutes a part of the Great Basin region whose deserts are traditionally more milder than those in the south. Nevada is divided into two main regions: the Great Basin and parts of Central Sierra. The region alone features 172 distinct mountain summits with 2,000 feet of prominence. In southern Nevada, the region is separated by Nevada through the Colorado River which concentrates into the man-made Lake Mead before continuing southward towards the Gulf of California via the Salinas Dam.

Grand Canyon

A view of the Grand Canyon, a national natural treasure found in the provinces of Flagstaff and Apache.

Like Nevada, much of Arizona lies within the Basin and Range Province. It is home to world famous Grand Canyon found along the Colorado River and Plateau. The canyon is part of a staircase-like system of mountainous ridges and plateaus beginning up in the American state of Utah. Arizona is divided into two regions: Navajo (northern Arizona) and Colorado (southern Arizona). The Grand Canyon has often been described as one of the seven natural wonders of the world. Southern Arizona is dominated by the Sonora Desert and runs along the international border with Mexico.

Some parts of the coastal California region lies within the Pacific Plate and earthquakes are frequent. The San Andreas Fault serves as a tectonic boundary between the Pacific plate and the continental North American Plate. Several other faults run throughout western Sierra and are capable of causing destructive mega-earthquakes.

Sierra includes six unincorporated territories which are not considered officially part of Sierra but nevertheless Sierran lands. Such territories include the entire Baja California peninsula which is contiguously connected to mainland Sierra to the north. The peninsula separates the Pacific Ocean to the west from the Gulf of California to the east. A elongated stretch of mass, it features four main deserts and several mountain ranges including the Peninsular Ranges.

Nationwide, Sierra is currently facing one of the worst droughts in its history. Since late 2013, strict water conservation measures have been taken on the provincial matter to address this issue. Water has always been a critical issue for Sierra's agricultural and industrial development. Since the 20th century, numerous cases (often between conflicting provinces) and incidents revolved around the sensitive issue of water rights. The situation in recent years have only worsened thanks to the continental-wide drought affecting North America. Climate change and the La Niña phenomenon have been attributed by some scientists to be the cause of Sierra's worsening drought problems.

Flora and fauna

Meerkat

Sierra meerkats (Suricata suricatta serra) have been an important part of local ecosystems since their introduction to Sierra in the late 19th century.

Sierra is home to a rich community of flora and fauna. It is one of North America's leading countries in endemic plant species with over 5,000 unique species. Famous endemic floral species include Sequoiadendron giganteum (giant sequoia) and Eschscholzia californica (California poppy). Sierra is home to over 80 species of reptiles, 50 species of amphibians, 70 species of freshwater fish, 450 species of birds, and 200 species of mammals. 17 species of mammals, 17 species of amphibians, and 20 species of freshwater fish are endemic to Sierra. The national animals of Sierra are the grizzly bear (Ursus arctos) and the Sierra mule deer (Odocoileus hemionus) although the former's populations were decimated by hunters in Sierra locally by 1900—no wild grizzly bear population has been recorded in Sierra since then. Another notable species of mammal that has become synonymous with Sierra is the Sierra meerkat (Suricata suricatta serra), a mongoose originally brought from South Africa and Namibia. The meerkat was brought and introduced into Sierra's wildlife during the Gold Rush by South African prospectors. Since then, the meerkat's population has dominated the Mojave and Sonora deserts and been regarded as a welcome species instead of a pest.

Over 1,200 different species of animals, plants, and fungus are protected under federal law from hunting or exploitation. The first of such environmental laws was the Species Preservation Act of 1972 which stated goal was to protect indigenous endangered species listed by the International Union of Conservation of Nature (IUCN) from extinction. There are several laws and regulations which restrict hunting and fishing, often in the form of licenses or hunting seasons. In addition, there are hundreds of national parks and federally protected wilderness areas throughout Sierra and thousands more of provincial and county parks which prevent visitors from disrupting the environment and protect the wildlife that live within them.

Demographics

Population

Sierra Racial Breakdown of Population
Racial composition 1990 2000 2010
White 59.0% 51.4% 46.3%
Asian 19.6% 24.2% 26.8%
Black 7.4% 9.8% 5.2%
Native 0.8% 1.1% 1.2%
Native Hawaiian and
other Pacific Islander
- 1.0% 1.4%
Other race 13.2% 19.9% 20.1%
Two or more races - 2.4% -

The 2010 Sierra Royal Bureau of Census officially counted 79,910,929. On August 3, 2014, the Census estimated that 83,484,232 people were living in Sierra—an estimation consistent with the continual positive population growth Sierra has experienced in recent years. Sierra has had a history of immigration and has consistently grown upward since the Gold Rush of 1849. Sierra is the 17th most populous nation in the world ahead of nations such Britain, France, and Germany. It, alongside Brazoria, Hani, and the United Commonwealth, are the only industrialized nations projected to have continuous large population growth.

Sierra has a very diverse population with the largest ancestry being Mexican Sierrans (12 million), German Sierrans (10 million), English Sierrans (8 million), Chinese Sierrans (7 million), and Vietnamese Sierrans (6 million).

While the largest racial group in Sierra has always been White Sierrans (both those of Hispanic and non-Hispanic origin), it has seen a decline in proportion to other races. Asian Sierrans are the largest racial minority group with the four largest ethnic groups being Chinese Sierrans, Vietnamese Sierrans (both North and South), Korean Sierrans, Filipino Sierrans, and Thai Sierrans. There are also significant population of Japanese Sierrans, Indian Sierrans, and Southeast Asian immigrants who claim part of the 26.8% minority (2010 census). Asians, alongside Hispanic Americans are the current demographic trend although such growth has been slowing down since as recently as 2009.

The main source of immigrants have consistently come from Mexico and Central America (530,000 a year). From Asia, immigrants from the Philippines, Cambodia, and Thailand make up the second highest traffic of annual immigrants (210,000 a year). Wealthy families and prospective students from China, Manchuria, Korea and India. have also continued in lieu of the domestic workforce to meet the ongoing demand for more jobs in technology, medicine, and science.

According to the University of Gold Coast, Porciúncula (UGCP), as much as 3 million Sierrans identify themselves as gay, lesbian, bisexual, or transgender (LGBT). The highest occurrence of LGBT Sierrans have been found in the province of San Francisco with 15% of the state identifying themselves as LGBT.



Language

Languages spoken by more than 1,000,000 in Sierra at home
as of 2010
Language Percent of
population
Number of
speakers
English 77% 57,281,994
Combined total of all languages
other than English
23% 17,110,206
Spanish
(excluding Spanish Creole)
9% 6,695,298
Chinese
(including Cantonese and Mandarin)
3% 2,231,766
Vietnamese 2% 1,487,844
Korean 1.9% 1,413,452
Thai 1.75% 1,388,631
Hani 1.7% 1,264,667
Japanese 1.5% 1,115,883

English (Sierran English), Spanish, Chinese (both Mandarin and Cantonese), Vietnamese, Korean, Thai, Han, Japanese, Serran are the official languages at the federal level. With the exception of the Sierran-based conlang Serran, all of the official languages are mentioned explicitly on the Constitution's Section IV of Article I including the official scripts for Chinese, Korean, and Japanese. English is regarded as the lingua franca and receives an implied preference of usage in the Constitution.

All of the official language are recognized as languages with at least over a million speakers who use it at home with the exception of Serran (about 5 million speak it although seldom use it at home). The most recent language to receive official status was Serran which was granted on October 4, 2014. The change was made on the Sierra federal code although has not officially been made on the Constitution.. According to the 2010 census, 77% of Sierrans over the age of 5 spoke only or predominantly English at home. Spanish is the second most common language and is also the most taught school language in Sierra. Foreign language classes featuring the Asian official languages are also offered at most Sierra public school districts.

By default, despite there being eight official languages, most government buildings, documents, and signs use only English and Spanish. This can be better observed in racial-specific majority areas or ethnic enclaves where a particular language is more prevalent. Subsection II of Article I, Section IV states that any level of government may use any of the official languages for official use so long as it reflects the area's linguistic community and that it include one other language, preferably English of the "Sierran variant". Regardless, as mandated by federal statute, all said government-operated facilities must provide a written translation in each of the official language and/or an active duty translator with fluent knowledge to the respective language. For that reason, the translation and language learning industry has been strong due to popular and legal demand. In addition, Subsection II of Article I, Section IV states that the government shall provide translations of official documents to citizens who do not understand any of the official languages fluently.

Other commonly spoken languages that do not have official status include German, French, Arabic, Hindi, Punjabi, and Persian.

Religion

Religious affiliation in Sierra
Affiliation % of Sierra population
Christian 82 82
 
Protestant 63 63
 
Catholic 15 15
 
Eastern Orthodox 3 3
 
Other Christian 2 2
 
Other Faith 4 4
 
Unaffiliated 12 12
 
Don't know/refused answer 3 3
 
Total 100 100
 

Article X of the Sierra Constitution guarantees the free exercise of religion and forbids Parliament from passing any law promoting religious law. Christianity has been the most practiced religion in Sierra since its founding with Protestant denominations claiming the most adherents. In spite of this, weekly church attendance has been declining since the 1970s and currently stands at 47%. Irreligion has been growing particularly among younger Sierrans although the actual percentage of Sierrans openly labeling themselves as "atheists" or "agnostics" is at 3%.

Protestantism remains the largest set of religions in Sierra with Baptist, Seventh-day Adventist, Methodist, and Evangelical Churches the leading denominations. The largest Christian non-Protestant denomination is Roman Catholicism at 15%. Eastern Orthodox claim 3% of Sierra's population followed by Mormonism with 1%. The remaining 1% include Nontrinitarian groups such as Jehovah's Witnesses.

Buddhism is the largest non-Christian religion with 2% with the next 2% constituting Judaism (0.4%), Islam (0.3%), and Hinduism (0.2%). There also exists a diverse number of religious communities of minute populations: Canaanite, Sikh, Jain, Shinto, Baha'i, Wiccan, deist, or New Age.

Religion has influenced Sierra which has held a strong Protestant tradition. The Protestant work ethic has shaped modern Sierran culture and has often been heavily emphasized. Although the government cannot pass any religious laws, the government has on many occasions been influenced or pressured by religious organizations and groups. In the 1920s, the temperance movement gained traction in Sierra and was promoted by many conservative Christian churches. Parliament came close to passing a federal law outlawing the sell, ownership, and consumption of alcohol similarly to the United Commonwealth's Prohibition. Legislation ultimately failed although the temperance movement prevailed as late as 1945. Fear of Sunday blue laws in the 19th and 20th century particularly among Seventh-day Adventists who believed Saturday was the Sabbath prompted Parliament passing a law preventing any passages at the federal or provincial level in which the government mandated religion-esque "resting" days.

In regard towards the military, religious observers can opt to be a conscientious objector in times of a military draft and serve as a non-combatant in the forces. Such claims are taken seriously and rigorous background checks help determine whether an individual may receive such status.

While the Parliament of Sierra is constitutionally prevented from restricting the practice of religion, it does have the power to restrict religious activity that would violate the constitution or law such as murder and polygamy. It also can deem whether or not an organization claiming religious status can be eligible for tax exemption. Among the most prolific "bans" on a religious group is the Church of Scientology where the government has consistently refused the Church's files for exemption. It has refused to recognize the Church as a religious organization since 1961 although the League of Nations have pressured the Sierran government in recent years to modify its stance towards the Church. However, the private practice of Scientology, especially those part of the Free Zone "squirrel" movement, are permitted and endorsed as an alternative to the mainline church by the government, a recommendation that some interpret as a violation of separation of church and state.

Family structure and law

In 2014, 73% of Sierrans over the age of 25 were married or cohabited, 2% were widowed, 8% were divorced, and the rest have never married or been involved in a long-term relationship. Marriage and the nuclear family are two important concepts which are deeply rooted into Sierran culture. Until contemporary times, marriage was defined a monogamous union between a man and a woman. Since at least the 1980s, this view has been challenged by pro-LGBT activists who helped push towards greater cultural acceptance in Sierra. Divorce is deeply frowned upon and discouraged in Sierran culture although divorce rates have steadily rose to affecting 5 out of 100 marriages in 2009.

According to the 2010 census, same-sex marriages accounted for 9% of all marriages in Sierra. Same-sex marriages are legally recognized in 13 of the 23 provinces. Marriage between first cousins is legal in only 3 provinces and polygamy is illegal in all of the provinces although adultery and extramarital laws are either non-existent or unenforced. Similarly, cross-species marriage is forbidden in all provinces but the legality of zoophilia-related activities varies from province to province. Child pornography (with the exception of simulated images or videos which vary from province to province) is criminalized in all provinces and the distribution, ownership, or creation of such material is considered a felony at the federal law.

Government and politics

Kingdom of Sierra
Coat of arms of Sierra.svg

This article is part of the series:
Politics and government of the
Kingdom of Sierra


Elisa

Her Majesty Angelina II, Queen of Sierra

As a constituent country subject to the Charter for the Kingdom of Sierra, Sierra is a sui generis semi-parliamentaryl democracy with a constitutional monarchy which serves as the foundation of the executive, legislative, and judicial branches of the Kingdom through its Constitution. The sovereign and head of state is Angelina II, the Queen whose actual involvement in the day-to-day basis of governance is limited and lies within the actual head of government, the prime minister (Nemesis Heartwell). Unlike other parliamentary systems such as Canada and Britain, the prime minister is directly elected by the popular vote. Likewise, the deputy prime minister is elected alongside with the prime minister and serves the role of prime minister when the incumbent cannot immediately fulfill his/her role. This system of a separate hereditary monarchy and popularly elected executive is the result of the compromise between British royalists and American republicans during the foundation of Sierra. The prime minister works not in the monarch's name but rather the people's.

The monarch holds the Crown which is essentially the embodiment and source of the government's power over Sierra. As monarch, he/she is conferred with the powers associated with the royal prerogative which includes the right to declare war, negotiate and ratify treaties, issue passports, and create or dissolve government offices. In addition, the monarch may exercise the act of assent (which is essential for bills from Parliament to pass) and the issuance of edicts.

The prime minister is head of the executive Council and the Cabinet, two government bodies comprised of governors and ministers working under the Crown who lead ministries corresponding their position, and is also a member of the Privy Council of Sierra, the official body of royal advisers. The prime minister advises the monarch and may exercise nearly all of the powers proscribed to the monarch on their behalf. Consequently, because the monarch is not expected to explicitly exercise his/her power on a daily basis, the prime minister is given the responsibilities and duties, effectively making the prime minister, the true head of the government. The Cabinet effectively carries out the day-to-day administration of what would otherwise be proscribed to the monarch, who, out of tradition and custom, rarely partakes in.

The bicameral Parliament fulfills the role and duty of a legislative branch. Divided between the upper house Senate (composed of 70 members) and the lower house House of Commons (composed of 265 members), each house works in conjunction to create, modify, and pass national laws. Parliament reserves exclusive rights among them being the power of the purse, and impeachment. Members of both houses are elected by the people and election cycles renew parliamentary terms every 6 years. In the Senate, each province is represented by two senators while in the House of Commons, seats are apportioned every census (10 years) with regard to the capped number of 265. The Gold Coast, the most populous province in Sierra has 53 seats while 6 provinces received the minimum seats of 1 (Cornerstone, Eureka, Flagstaff, Imperial, Mohave, and Plumas respectively). Parliament features a three-way party system: Democratic-Republican (social liberalism, progressivism), Libertarian (libertarianism, lasseiz-faire economics), and Royalist (social conservatism, monarchism). The former two have historically been the predominant parties, with the Libertarian Party only recently a significant third party. Other minor parties with seats in Parliament include Green and the Social Democrats.

The Supreme Court of Sierra is the highest court within the Sierran judicial system. It, along with the Inferior Courts make up the entirety of the federal judiciary. The Supreme Court interprets the Constitution and uses said interpretation to prevent the legislative or executive branch from passing or executing a law/action that would violate the Constitution. As the final interpreter, its decisions overturn all judicial actions of lower courts. Unless a case is not within its jurisdiction, the decision of any case is often treated as legally binding law. The Supreme Court is composed of eight associate justices headed by the Chief Justice (Preston Brantly), the ninth and highest-ranking justice.


Law

Sierra uses the common law system wherein judges or magistrates develop law through their decision in courts or tribunals case-by-case and on previously established precedents. Some elements of civil law however, does exist within the Sierran legal framework and was incorporated in reflection of the American interpretation of classic English law and Spanish law. In some provinces and territories, there are varied deviations from the Sierran common legal system including elements of French law incorporated into the Gold Coast and the Channel Islands and Roman-Dutch law in Plumas.

Law exists on several different levels and layers of both domestic codified and uncodified law as well as international agreements such as treaties. The highest form of law in Sierra rests within the Charter for the Kingdom of Sierra (which also applies to the Deseret and Hawaii) and the Constitution followed by federal statutory laws or regulations created through acts of Parliament, royal or executive orders, and Supreme Court decisions implemented in the Sierra Federal Code.

Under the Sierran federal system, the extent of federal power is limited and enumerated by the Constitution itself. Any powers not delegated or forbidden to the federal government is left among the plenary sovereign provinces, who, with their own individual constitutions and governments, determine much of the "living law" of contract, probate, tort, property, tax, criminal, and family law.

Religious law has always been expressively forbidden under the separation of church and state principle provided by Article X of the Constitution. Thus, laws regarding blasphemy or desecration are forbidden. Since the 1930s, blue laws have also been prohibited from being enacted as it was found that these laws had religious undertones. Discriminatory and hate speech laws have also been similarly prohibited as such legislation would undermine free speech.

Political divisions

ShastaPlumasSan FranciscoTahoeSan JoaquinSanta ClaraCentral ValleyKingsGold CoastOrangeInland EmpireLagunaImperialMaricopaSonoraCornerstoneApacheFlagstaffMohaveClarkRenoWashumkoEurekaMap of Sierra (provinces labeled)
About this image
A clickable map featuring Sierra's 23 provinces

Sierra is one of the three constituent countries that form the Kingdom of Sierra. Each of the three a co-equal country under the Charter for the Kingdom of Sierra, the seat of government and the monarchy lies within Sierra in Porciúncula. Sierra is the only one of the three to not have a fully devolved government, with its legislature being the Parliament of Sierra. By far the largest and most powerful, Sierra was previously itself the sovereign state that included the Deseret and Hawaii as territories. The latter two were granted autonomy as constituent countries, while Sierra downgraded to a fellow country through the 1950 Charter.

Provinces

Sierra is federation of 23 provinces which were all created within a year of the country's founding in 1858. The boundaries have been virtually unchanged since the provinces' creation and are primarily based on two factors: concentration of population and the relative size of the many ranchos set up throughout Sierra. Specifically, provinces in the eastern desert regions of Sierra were heavily based on ranchos or individual towns. Large but less densely populated than the western coastal provinces, many eastern provinces enjoyed a considerable amount of autonomy for several decades due to their distance from the central government (whose capital at the time was based in San Francisco City).

Province Flag Capital Population (2010 census) Seal/Coat of arms
Apache Flag of Apache Eager 178,967 Seal of Apache
Central Valley Flag of Central Valley Fresno 894,384 Seal of Central Valley
Clark Flag of Clark Las Vegas 2,328,001 Seal of Clark
Cornerstone Flag of Cornerstone Safford 132,432 Coat of arms of Cornerstone
Eureka Flag of Eureka Jackson 84,321 Seal of Eureka
Flagstaff Flag of Flagstaff Flagstaff City 378,329 Seal of Flagstaff
Gold Coast Flag of Gold Coast Porciúncula 16,384,349 Seal of Gold Coast
Imperial Flag of Imperial El Centro 456,485 Seal of Imperial
Inland Empire Flag of Inland Empire Riverside 10,374,483 Seal of Inland Empire
Laguna Flag of Laguna San Diego 8,484,431 Seal of Laguna
Kings Flag of Kings Santa Barbara 1,485,932 Seal of Kings
Maricopa Flag of Maricopa Phoenix 6,333,675 Seal of the Province of Maricopa
Mohave Flag of Mohave Kingman 567,349 Seal of Mohave
Orange Flag of Orange Santa Ana 2,985,311 Seal of Orange
Plumas Flag of Plumas Ukiah 1,486,568 Coat of arms of Plumas
Reno Flag of Reno Reno City 1,029,339 Coat of arms of Reno
San Francisco Flag of San Francisco San Francisco City 2,488,321 Coat of arms of San Francisco
San Joaquin Flag of San Joaquin Bernheim 6,785,443 Coat of arms of San Joaquin
Santa Clara Flag of Santa Clara San Jose 5,574,330 Coat of arms of Santa Clara
Shasta Flag of Shasta Crescent City 984,221 Coat of arms of Shasta
Sonora Flag of Sonora (Sierra) Tuscon 3,786,443 Coat of arms of Sonora
Tahoe Flag of Tahoe South Lake Tahoe 1,566,858 Coat of arms of Tahoe
Washumko Flag of Washumko Elko 897,423 Seal of Washumko


Sierra also honors tribal sovereignty of the Native American reservations. Though reservations are within provincial borders, reservations are treated as independent sovereign entities. The largest reservation in Sierra belongs to the Navajo people with a population of 315,000 official members living within the land. The recognition of tribal sovereignty is exclusive between the Sierran government and each reservation—reservations may not conduct any foreign relations or actions with any other foreign nation that would appear to supersede Sierran sovereignty however.

Secessionism is a right given to the provinces guaranteed by the Fourth Amendment of the Sierran Constitution in 1907. The process of secessionism however would require that a supermajority of the seceding province's citizens to vote in favor of secession, another supermajority in Parliament, and an explicitly signed proclamation from the monarch. Such a right has never been attempted nor exercised at any large scale since the amendment's inception. Unilateral secession is not recognized and perpetrators would be considered performing high treason under Sierran federal law.

Territories

Main article: Territories of Sierra

Sierra also possesses eight overseas territories, all but one of which are not officially incorporated into the country: Pacífico Norte, Pacífico Sur, the Gilbert and Ellice Islands, Rapa Nui, Sierran Samoa, the Pacific Crown Islands, Cancún, and Yucatán, the latter two being crown dependencies. The Channel Islands, which were originally a part of the Gold Coast, are the only incorporated territories in Sierra, gaining its own territorial status in 1998 after Gold Coast voters, including Channelier residents, voted in favor of Proposition 11. With the exception of the Pacific Crown Islands, all of the territories are inhabited (the Pacíficos and Hawaii have more than a million citizens each).

All citizens in the non-crown dependencies enjoy nearly all rights guaranteed by the Constitution except the right to vote in prime ministerial elections. The crown dependencies, which was formed in 2015 in the aftermath of the 2015 invasion of Mexico, are currently administered by crown-commissioned committees with pending status with their own charters, distinct from the Constitution, and a great degree of autonomy. All of the territories are self-governing and represented nationally in Parliament by delegates and are not subjected to most federal taxes. In addition, anyone born in any of the territories are automatically considered Sierran citizens. If a Sierran from the territories were to move to the provinces, they would automatically gain the right to vote in federal elections. Conversely, if a Sierran were to move to the territories, they would lose that right. All citizens have free unrestricted movement between the provinces and the territories, as well as any other regions in the Kingdom.

Territory Flag Coat of arms Status Capital Population (2010 census) Date of acquisition
Bénieîle Flag of Bénieîle Coat of arms of Bénieîle Organized unincorporated territory Port-Vila 243,304 April 3, 1861
Cancún Flag of Cancún Seal of Cancún Crown dependency Cancún 922,800 (Mexican census) August 15, 2015
Channel Islands Flag of the Channel Islands Coat of arms of the Channel Islands Organized incorporated territory Avalon 24,291 February 9, 1999
Gilbert and Ellice Islands Flag of Kiribati Coat of arms of Kiribati Organized unincorporated territory South Tarawa 104,341 April 3, 1861
Pacific Crown Islands Flag of Pacific Crown Islands Coat of arms of Sierra Unorganized unincorporated territory No official capital
(De jure: Porciúncula)
0 (permanent);
2,500~ military personnel year-round
June 13, 1956
Pacífico Norte Flag of Pacifico Norte Coat of arms of Pacifico Norte Organized unincorporated territory;
disputed with the Mexican Social Republic
Tijuana 3,332,455 February 2, 1848*
Pacífico Sur Flag of Pacifico Sur Coat of arms of Pacifico Sur Organized unincorporated territory;
disputed with the Mexican Social Republic
La Paz 578,483 February 2, 1848*
Rapa Nui Flag of Rapa Nui Coat of arms of Rapa Nui Organized unincorporated territory Hanga Roa 23,532 September 18, 1862
Sierran Samoa Flag of Sierran Samoa Coat of arms of Sierran Samoa Organized unincorporated territory Pago Pago 63,383 December 2, 1899
Yucatán Flag of Yucatan Coat of arms of Yucatan Crown dependency Chetumal 6,484,446 (Mexican census) August 15, 2015

*Acquired through the Treaty of Guadelupe Hildago under the California Republic. Renewed claim through the propagation of the 1858 Constitution on November 27, 1858.

Parties and elections

Political parties in Sierra

Royalist Party of Sierra (2015).svg
DRPS 2017.svg
Libertarian Party of Sierra.svg
Logos of the three major political parties in Sierra: the Royalist Party, the Democratic Republican Party, and the Libertarian Party.

Until recently, Sierra had a two-party system dominated between the left-leaning Democratic-Republican Party and the right-leaning Royalist Party. Since 1989, the Libertarian Party has been a part of the present-day three-party system Sierra has today.

Both the Democratic-Republican Party and Libertarian Party share similar positions when in regard to civil liberties (socially liberal) whereas the Royalist Party has consistently held conservative stance towards certain issues (opposition towards the legalization of same-sex marriages and marijuana).

Remove Kebab Party

The logo of the infamous Remove Kebab Party, an extreme right-wing party formerly headed by Trevor XI.

Economically, the Democratic-Republicans advocate a form of moderate social democracy and third way favoring a large welfare state. Royalists favor a fiscally conservative approach towards economics including lasseiz-faire economics. The Libertarians officially advocate for lasseiz-faire economics although take a much more provocative stance towards the welfare state than their Royalist counterparts (advocating the complete abolition of the welfare state in favor of a private sector-funded safety net). The Democratic-Republicans have traditionally held majority rule in the urban coastal regions of Sierra, the Royalists in the eastern inland desert regions, and the Libertarians dispersed nationwide with no significant majority in any province except in the Inland Empire. Other parties generally focus on single-issue politics like the Green (environmentalism) and Prohibition (temperance movement and anti-marijuana). The Laborers, Social Democrats, Libertarian Socialists, Communists, Nationalists (fascists), and the controversial Remove Kebab Party are other other notable parties that have considerable membership (at least 500,000).

Foreign relations

League of Nations Headquarters

The headquarters of the League of Nations is based in Downtown Porciúncula.

File:Embassy of South Korea in Porciúncula.jpg

Sierra has had a long tradition of diplomacy with foreign countries. A founding member of the League of Nations, it has hosted the international organization's headquarters in Porciúncula since the latter's inception. In addition, Sierra also has membership in G8, Organisation for Economic Co-Operation and Development, the Organization of American States, the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC), East Asia Summit, the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), and the Trans-Pacific Allied Community (TPAC). Nearly all foreign countries have permanent diplomatic missions and embassies at Sierra's capital, Porciúncula and consulates throughout the nation. Likewise, Sierran interests are represented internationally in embassies in nearly every country Sierra recognizes.

Sierra has military and defense pacts with nations including the member states of the Conference of American States, Korea, Japan, and South Vietnam via TPAC. Although not a member of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO), it maintains close contact with its member nations and is considered a global partner. Since 1959, Sierra has been part of the North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD) combining aerial operations with continental Anglo-America.

Foreign aid is considered a high priority by the Sierran government although it has declined in recent years. As of 2014, it sends $2 billion of foreign aid annually mostly to nations for investment such as Colombia, Hani, and South Vietnam. Private donations to foreign nations by Sierrans have been significantly higher than the government's at an annual output of $11 billion (from both individuals, charities, and Sierra-based corporations).

Sierra has a long history of responding to international crises and conflicts. During both World Wars, and Vietnam War, Sierra provided humanitarian and medical support for soldiers and civilians. It was one of the first nations to respond to the invasion of Kuwait and the Bosnia crisis. In 2005, Sierra provided over $300 million to the Hurricane Katrina relief efforts. Sierra also has extensive government-funded outreach programs that support improving the quality of life in third world countries in Africa, Central America, and Southeast Asia. There is also a strong community of Sierran missionaries who indirectly promote and spread awareness of Sierran culture in general.

Sierra does not have formal diplomatic relations with Djibouti, Eritrea, and Somalia. In December 2014, Sierra severed diplomatic relations with Mexico following the latter's failure to withdraw its troops in the aftermath of the invasion of Guatemala.

Non-LN member states with limited recognition that Sierra recognizes include the state of Palestine (although it does not maintain any viable diplomatic mission with the Palestinian government beyond a government-sanctioned special interest group at the Jordanian embassy in Porciúncula), the Republic of Kosovo (embassies exist in both respective nations), and the Sahrawi Arab Democratic Republic (a non-resident embassy to the Republic exists in Algeria).

Many have criticized the Sierran government's current foreign policy which has, since the early 1990s, been staunchly pro-American and influenced by the neoconservative movement. Prior to this, Sierra generally exercised restraint in its policy, it favored noninterventionism and semi-isolationism. Primarily, Sierra's involvement in the Middle East has received backlash domestically and internationally. States such as Iran have been critical of Sierra for being involved in what has been perpetuated by the United Commonwealth. Some anti-Sierran clerics and political figures in the Middle East have deemed Sierra and Brazoria as the "Lesser Satans" (in comparison to the United Commonwealth's name, the "Great Satan"). Prime Minister Hong has, since his election, promised to pull out troops from the Middle East but recent developments at home with the Army of God and aboard as with the case of the ISIS has forced the government to continue to commit to its policies.


Military

Lockheed U-2

A Lockheed U-2 Dragon Lady patrolling Sierran aerospace.

The armed forces of Sierra are divided into five distinct branches (the Royal Army, the Royal Navy, the Royal Air Force, the Royal Marines, and the Royal Coast Guard), all of which are collectively known as the Sierran Crown Armed Forces (SCAF; also referred to as His Royal Highness's Armed Forces). While members of the SCAF swear loyalty and allegiance to the monarch, the monarch serves simply as the figurehead of the forces. True authority is vested within the prime minister who functions as the SCAF's commander-in-chief (referred to as the Supreme Field Marshal). Daily management and operations of the SCAF is managed by the Ministry of Defense which works in conjunction with the Joint Chiefs of Staff, a tribunal composed of Sierra's highest-ranking generals. There are two reserve forces that are not considered part of the SCAF by de jure but nonetheless treated equally as a SCAF branch: the National Guard (dedicated primarily to national defense and crisis response) and the Royal Auxiliary Forces (civilians prepared to go into combat before the regular draft service whitelist in times of war). In 2013, the Ministry of Defense reported that 732,181 Sierrans were actively serving the military. Another 992,281 worked as civilian employees (excluding contractors) for the military and the government bodies associated with it.

Military conscription is voluntary, but conscription is possible in times of war through the Royal Selective Service. Both male and female citizens between the ages of 21 and 45 are automatically registered into the Royal Selective Service's draft waiting list. Those with health complications, disabilities, obligations (a mother raising her 2-year old child), moral objections, or other factors preventing a citizen from fulfilling their military duty are dropped out from the list (and can receive blacklisting from future drafts) or receive other options instead of the default combat role (for conscientious objectors) such as a nurse or engineer.

The military budget of Sierra is heavily technology-oriented with an annual spending of $47.65 billion. Currently, the prime focus of military spending has been centered on aircraft, missile, and naval technology. Sierra also possesses nuclear weapons although it has signed the Non-Proliferation Treaty and maintains only an active stockpile of 135 active nuclear warheads. During World War II, the American military were allowed to use Sierran land to test nuclear weapons under the condition that it would share nuclear technology and information with Sierra.

Crime and law enforcement

SFCPD officers

Officers of the San Francisco City Police Department in uniform at a protest.

Generally speaking, law enforcement is handled by the local police and sheriff's departments. Provincial and federal police handle enforcement at broader levels with greater jurisdiction. The Royal Bureau of Investigation and Sierran Customs and Border Police are examples of federal-level law enforcement agencies with specialized duties. All levels of Sierran government operate under common law. All crimes (with few exceptions including treason) are tried by local and state courts while federal courts review specific appeals from all provincial courts. Crimes committed overseas or in aerospace are always tried at the federal court. Crimes committed within the military including war crimes are almost always tried by a separate military court system which lacks a jury trial and uses a special martial law as opposed to standard Sierran law. Plea bargaining has been pervasive in Sierran courts with 83% of criminal cases ending with a plea bargaining instead of a trial by jury. Many trials, especially famous cases with a grand jury are often televised and sensationalized for the public. Since 2007, select Supreme Court cases are broadcast live daily on television and the Internet.

In 2013, there were 6.2 murders per 100,000 persons in Sierra. The prevalence of gang violence, particularly in southern Sierran urban areas, as well as the relatively lax gun laws have often been used to explain the abnormally large homicide rate. Compared to other developed nations, 1.4 times greater than the leading nation (the United Commonwealth with 4.4) and 9.6 times greater than the average of all developed nations. Gun politics have been a dominating political issue in Sierra since about 1960 when gun-related homicide spiked to 10.2. Generally speaking, homicide rates attributed to firearms have declined every year since 2008 by 4%.

Sierra has an incarceration rate of 439 prisoners per 100,000 persons making it have the 11th largest incarceration rate in the world. A controversial issue surrounding this is the higher instances of black prison population (while African Sierrans only make up 5.2% of Sierra's population, they constitute 29% of the prison population as of 2014). There have been numerous incidents with the police that have led to questions of brutality or racially-insensitive arrests. Indeed, one famous case was the Porciúncula riots of of 1992 which led to a temporary blow to the sense of national unity in Sierra. The riots were a response to four PPD officers who appeared in a video showing the beating of African Sierran Rodney King and the murder of Latasha Harlins. Prison reform has been commonly discussed in Sierran politics and Parliament has been responsive towards growing public thought by adopting more lenient and relaxed prison sentences and punishments (favoring rehabilitation) in recent years. Capital punishment is a provincial matter and is legal in 12 of the 23 provinces. There has been push to abolish capital punishment although anti-execution activists have already successfully banned all methods except death by injection.

Economy

Economic indicators
Nominal GDP $5.177 trillion (Q4 2013)
Real GDP growth 4.7% (Q4 2014, annualized)
4.4% (Q4 2013)
CPI inflation 1.5% (November 2014)
Employment-to-population ratio 69.9% (December 2014)
Unemployment 3.2% (December 2014)
Labor force participation rate 64.6% (December 2014)
Total public debt $4.08 trillion (79% of GDP) (Q4 2014)
Household net worth $22.6 trillion (Q4 2014)

Sierra has a partially regulated mixed economy and is the fourth-largest economy in the world. Sierra has a GDP of $3.177 trillion and ranks seventh in the world in nominal GDP per capita. A developed country with a high-income economy, Sierra is one of the most industrialized nations in OECD. A major player in international trade, Sierra is the seventh largest importer and fifth largest exporter in the world. In 2013, Sierran private companies and individuals invested $190 billion in overseas companies and projects making Sierra the second largest outward direct investor in OECD after the United Commonwealth ($311 billion).

Sierran one dollar front

The front of a $1 Sierran bill featuring the first king of Sierra, Smith I.

The Royal Monetary Authority of Sierra serves as Sierra's central bank and is charged with the responsibility of issuing coins and notes of the national currency: the Sierran dollar. The dollar is the fourth largest reserve currency behind the Albish pound sterling, the EU euro, and the American dollar.

The leading exports of Sierra include computers and electronics, agricultural products, chemicals, pharmaceuticals, automobiles, machinery, textiles, and military technology. Sierra has also relied on cultural exports and international tourism. Home to Hollywood and Silicon Valley, Sierra's entertainment and technology sectors have generated billions in revenue for the country. Since the 20th century, Sierra has also been the leading pioneer in new companies and industries (primarily that in the retail industry). Tourism is particularly strong in southwestern Sierra (wide range of attractions and points of interest within close proximity), the province of Clark (gambling), and the mountainous Sierra Nevada provinces (snow-related recreation and natural sightseeing). Agriculture is one of Sierra's strongest sectors with its exported produce products being almonds, avocados, dates, figs, grapes, oranges, rice, strawberries, tomatoes, and wheat. The Central Valley is primary center for all Sierran agricultural products with its fertile flatland and favorable weather conditions. The other major agricultural "valley" in Sierra is the Imperial Valley, a dry and sandy region that was converted into irrigated farmlands during the mid-20th century. Napa Valley is world renowned for its wine industry and is the top producer in grape products in the Western Hemisphere. Beef, chicken, and turkey are among livestock and game products that Sierra exports. The fishing industry is also particularly profitable with the majority of Sierra's exports heading to Great Korean Empire, Japan, and Manchuria. Milk is Sierra's top dairy product followed by cheese, butter, yogurt, and whey.

Although Sierra has achieved a post-industrial society, it remains featuring one of the world's leading industrial power alongside its established strong service sector. Chemicals, textiles, and microtechnology are Sierra's leading manufacturing field with about 11% of Sierrans being employed in the manufacturing sector. Historically, manufacturing dominated the economy of Sierra during the second half of the 19th century and immediately before the 1960s. Since the dot com bubble, a shift on the focus towards banking, public administration, financial services, and other professional specialist fields have become the backbone of Sierra's economy. The Porciúncula Stock Exchange is one of the world's largest stock exchange boasting hundreds of companies in its portfolio and conducting millions of trades per day. A strong corporate, commercial culture has emerged since then and many Sierrans have reported to working overtime. Modern Sierran culture places heavy emphasis on productivity and efficiency as well as pleasure in their own labor. The domestic market is remarkably strong among Sierrans who buy as much as $3 trillion annually alone on shopping or entertainment.

Income, poverty, and wealth

Sierra ranks first place among developed nations with the highest household and employee income as well as the highest median household income which stands at $38,285. Largely owing to tract housing, Sierra boasts the highest living space per household/person than any other Western country including any of the Anglo-American nations. In 2014, Sierra ranked third place in the Human Development Index but when adjusted with income equality, it is placed at seventeenth place.

Sierra has a moderately wide income distribution and a increasing concentration of wealth among Sierra's richest 10%. In 2013, the 10% owned 63% of all of Sierra's wealth and at the 40% mark, they collectively owned 74%. About 11% of Sierrans live below the poverty line (defined as below $20,000 per household) and over 11.2 million Sierrans rely on some form of welfare program including food stamps. The unemployment rate however, is relatively low at 4.3% which has been declining since Sierra's rapid recovery from the 2008 financial crisis. An additional 36,000 Sierrans are homeless and "chronically" unemployed. Cities throughout Sierra in recent years have taken up steps to discourage panhandling which has been a popular method used by the homeless to sustain their lives. Instead, homeless shelters and commune housing has been established in an effort to provide basic housing for the homeless and to encourage the homeless to enter the workforce.

Infrastructure

Transportation

Route 91 (Inland Empire)

A highway marker for K.S. Route 91

Freeways in Sierra

A complex interchange in San Jose, Santa Clara.

Sierra features an extensive system of highways including transnational freeways. This system has heavily influenced Sierra's urban development and tied to Sierra's reputed car culture. It has one of the world's most congested roads (particularly in southwestern Sierra) and consequentially also suffers from severe pollution. In 2014, there was a total of 56,321,234 registered driver's licenses and 67,392,222 vehicles, motorcycles, and RVs. Sierran traffic drives on the right side of the road and consequently, the driver's seat and wheel is on the left hand side of the vehicle. Sierrans require a driver's license before they can legally drive most vehicles including motorcycles. These licenses are provided by each province which manages and regulates its own transportation rules. Although provisions regarding driving varies from province to province, most Sierrans can begin take and pass driver's permit starting at 15 ½ years old. There are heavy fines and strict punishments against those who drive while drunk including getting their license permanently revoked.

Trains, subways, and light-rail system constitute less than 5% of all Sierrans' daily mode of transport although have seen a rise in recent years. Bicycle use have also gained popularity in urban communities with over 20,000 miles of bike lanes throughout Sierra. Public and private bicycle sharing exists and are found available in some cities including as San Francisco City.

Sierra is home to various civil airline companies including Sierra Air, KS Airlines, and Western Airlines which all provide domestic and international flights. The Porciúncula International Airport (LAX) is Sierra's largest and busiest passenger airport serving 84 million visitors annually. Other major airports include the San Francisco (SFO), Riverside-Ontario International Airport (RION), and Clark International Airport (VEG).

Situated along the Pacific Ocean, Sierra frequently receives and sends a majority of its foreign imports and exports from Asia through its several seaports. The Port of Grands Ballons is the busiest seaport in the Western Hemisphere with an annual cargo tonnage of 93.8 million metric tons. The International Port of San Diego-Tijuana is Sierra's largest cruise ship port receiving an annual 1.3 million passengers.

Energy

45% of Sierra's electricity is generated from nuclear power with 23 nuclear reactors. 22% derive from petroleum, 11% from natural gas, 10% from coal, and the remaining 12% from wind, the sun, and other renewable energy sources. Although there has been some fierce opposition towards nuclear energy, 3 more reactors are set to be complete by 2025 to accommodate Sierra's growing energy demands and needs. One of the world's most famous dams, the Salinas Dam is responsible for powering an area covering as much as half of Sierra's population. Since the 1973 oil crisis, the Sierran government has rigorously pushed for transiting towards greener, renewable sources. About 69% of Sierra's energy derives from renewable sources and many Sierrans are encouraged to buy install private solar panels on their homes.

Science and technology

Googleplex

The Googleplex, the corporate headquarters of Google, one of the leading technology companies in Sierra.

The Sierran government spends an annual $33 billion annually on non-military scientific and technological equipment. Sierra has been a leading center of technological advancement and innovation, particularly due to Silicon Valley where the majority of the world's major technology firms and companies are based in. Around 91% of Sierrans (approximately 68 million) use and have connection to the Internet (via computers, laptops, mobile devices, or smart TVs) and online applications have been gradually integrated into Sierran public institutions at all grade levels. An aim of the Sierran government is to provide faster internet connection speeds. Proposals to make internet access a right within the Sierran constitution have repeatedly failed but gained traction in 2012 when Parliament voted 111-183 in favor of universal internet access.

The Royal Aeronautics and Aerospace Agency (R3A) is an active space program and has conducted extensive research and development. Sierra launched its first satellite (Muir I) into space in 1965 and has sent 3 astronauts to the moon including the "far side of the Moon" between 1972-74 with the assistance of Brazoria and the United Commonwealth. As of 2014, twenty-three Sierrans have flown into space and plans to be the first nation to land a human on Mars. It has launched a space probe, Transcendence, to research on dwarf planets Pluto, Eris, their moons, and other objects in the Kuiper belt. Space mining is another ongoing objective of R3A. Working alongside private aerospace companies, Sierra projects the emergence of outer space economic activity with mining, space tourism, and trade by 2060. Sierra is a participant of the International Space Station.

In 2011, Sierra unveiled plans for a hyperloop system to connect the cities of Porciúncula and San Francisco City. The following year, despite sizable public opposition, the project was approved and began construction in May 2014. The first network of the nationwide project is expected to be completed by 2020.

Measurement

Sierra uses a system of measurement virtually identical to the English imperial units and the Anglo-American customary units known as the Standard Sierran Units (SSU). The smallest unit in length under the system is the inch. 12 inches equals a foot and three feet equals one yard. For longer distances, a mile is used (5,280 feet). Weight is measured in pounds (abbreviated "lb") and ounces while fluid volume uses cups, pints, quarts, gallons, and teaspoons. For temperature, the Fahrenheit is used as opposed to the international standard Celsius.

Efforts to replace the SSU in favor of the International System of Units (SI) for everyday use has been met with resistance and failure. Although most measurement and conversions for government, scientific and, medical uses have now conformed to the SI units, the SSU has remained strong in all other aspects of Sierran life. Viewed as an integrally-ingrained part of Sierran culture, replacing the SSU is not only perceived to be a waste but an inconvenience. According to a 2013 poll conducted by Gallup, 78% of Sierrans refused to adopt the metric system for everyday purposes outside the fields the metric system is already used in.

Education

University of Santa Clara, Berkeley

Grounds of the University of Santa Clara, Berkeley (USCB), one of the world's most prestigious campuses.

Public education is provided by the provincial and local level under the supervision and regulation by the Ministry of Education. Education is compulsory between the ages of 5 to 18. Funding for both public and private schools are based on a nationwide comprehensive vouching system. In the 2013-14 school year, 88% of Sierran students were enrolled in a public school, 7% were enrolled in a religious private school, 3% were enrolled in a secular private school, and the rest were either homeschooled, studied online, or had a private tutor. 82% of Sierran college students attended a public university.

For Sierrans over the age of 25, 87.5% graduated from high school, 78.2% attended some college, 54.8% earned a bachelor's degree, and 23% earned graduate degrees. Free tuition in higher education is not guaranteed nor provided by the Sierran federal government and for that reason, the application, selection, and attendance of college has been considered a crucial hallmark in Sierran culture. The Sierran government provides student loans, grants, and waivers since the Affordable Education Act of 1916. Some provinces pay for students of lower-income backgrounds to attend colleges and scholarships are a popular means by the general public to cover some if not all of the costs of college. The literacy rate of Sierra is 99.7% and another 73% of Sierrans have proficient literacy in (an) additional language(s). There are three national public second education systems: the University of Sierra, the Sierra National University, and Sierra Community Colleges, which collectively form the world's largest system of universities and colleges, and includes some of the most prestigious and competitive campuses in the world.

Formal education is typically divided into three main educational stages: elementary (kindergarten to 6th grade), middle/junior high (7th and 8th grade), and high school (9th to 12th grade). Collectively, these stages form the "K–12" system. Upon completing 12th grade (marked with the acquisition of a diploma), students may choose to pursue higher education at community colleges, two or four-year universities, vocational/technical schools, or enter immediately into the workforce. After reaching legal age, students are no longer legally obligated to attend school and may choose to drop out of high school. Aside from dropping out, there are other options available for the student who chooses not to complete high school include enlisting into the military or opting to attain a GED certificate through an accredited institution. Attending a college is considered an essential necessity for all Sierrans and those who do not advance to higher education are often stigmatized. The collegiate environment is considered extremely competitive and demanding—there have been numerous cases of students dying from the exhaustion of studying for exams and tests. At times, local cities had to enforce curfews in order to prevent students from overstudying.

Throughout the year, students are assessed by their teachers through progress and report cards which record individual assignment and test scores. Depending on the grade, the student may be promoted to the next class, graduate, be retained, or placed into an alternative education plan. The most common grading scale is the A-F scale with A the highest grade and F the failing grade. In some schools, a D is considered a failing grade and may be treated as a high F.

Each province is in charge of education within its jurisdiction and therefore set a general curriculum (under supervision of the Ministry of Education) and standardized exams that all provincial schools must administer to its students. There has been push for a nationally administered standardized test and common set of standards which would provide the same direction and course of education for each individual province. Since the 2000s, this movement has grown in response to the rise of competitive domestic colleges and tests such as the SAT.

Health

Loma Linda University Medical Center

The Loma Linda University is one of the premier hospitals in Sierra.

Sierra has a life expectancy of 82.7 years (80.2 years for males and 85.1 for females), ranking 5th place in the world. The city of Loma Linda, Inland Empire is one of the world's designated blue zones with life expectancy exceeding 100. Irrespective to life expectancy, obesity and sedentary practices have become a major health concern with the rise of increased consumption of processed and fast foods. Nearly 20% of Sierrans are obese or overweight and the leading cause of death have been health complications associated with obesity including heart attacks, coronary artery disease, stroke, and type 2 diabetes. Awareness in the public have helped slow the rate of obesity by 18% in 2013 and the health food industry has been on the rise. The fat acceptance movement is a significant reactionary response to the rise of health awareness by some Sierrans who have been denounced by nearly all medical professionals.

Other leading causes of death include lung cancer, kidney disease, drug abuse, and traffic-related accidents. In a poll conducted by the Institute of Physical and Mental Health, over 45% of Sierrans reported some form of disability or health problem that interfered with mobility including arthritis, neck and back pain, or musculoskeletal disorders. Depression, anxiety, and bipolar disorder are the leading mental disorders in Sierra. Teenage pregnancy rates is relatively high and as a result, prompted many public and private schools to provide sex education or in controversial instances, even provide contraceptives. Suicide is relatively low in Sierra compared to other developed nations with 4 suicides for every 100,000 persons. Abortion has been a hotly contentious issue and is legal in 12 of the 23 provinces. Since the 1978 Supreme Court Lambert v. Province of the Gold Coast case, abortion procedures and clinics do not receive any government funding nor are private/public companies obligated to include abortions within their insurance plans.

Health care is not universal and instead provided by a variety of public programs or competing private companies. As of December 2013, approximately 9 million (~11.45% of the population) do not have health insurance.

Efforts to increase longevity, quality of life, and health have held a long history in Sierra. Quality breakfast and lunch has been a standard in Sierran public schools and physical education is compulsory to the 10th grade in all provinces. Most provinces require that restaurants and food companies provide information on nutritional facts including calories on their menus and products. The Royal Administration of Food and Drug Standards (RAFDS) oversees the regulation of food/drug production and sale and actively runs programs encouraging healthier lifestyles and exercise. In 2013, San Francisco was the first province to make GMO labels necessary for all locally-based food products. Other enforcement and restrictions include the denial of television advertisement screening for tobacco products. The legal drinking age in Sierra was first at 21 in 1931, 18 in 1967, and finally 16 in 1982. Similarly, the legal age to purchase and use tobacco or marijuana is at 16.

Sierra is known internationally for its diverse yet top-quality health options. Health tourism accounts for 5% of all international visits to Sierra officially. With advanced and sophisticated medical technology, professional health care staff, and plethora of health institutions, tens of thousands travel to Sierra to receive affordable and superb service. Some also come for alternative medicine including Chinese herbal medicine, hydrotherapy, and medicinal marijuana. "Miracle pills" and other sensationalized medical products are a gray area in Sierran legal law and is considered an epidemic in Sierran corporate life. Historically, many came to Sierra for its favorable weather to treat ailments and conditions including tuberculosis.

Military members, veterans, and their immediate family are able to receive medical attention and services at health facilities operated by the Ministry of Veteran Affairs.

Culture

Sierra is home to a diverse range of ethnic groups, traditions, values, and beliefs. As a cosmopolitan, multi-ethnic, multicultural, and multilingual nation, (a popular saying espousing this fact is "Five Races, One Culture, Many Tongues, One Nation") the Sierran government embraces and promotes diversity, interculturalism, and variety. Mainstream Sierran culture is predominantly Western with its heritage deeply Anglo-American. Since it underwent its own history and policies separate from its cultural mother, Sierra's culture has been more heavily influenced by and exposed to Eastern cultures (most notably Confucian ethics and hierarchy and popular culture) as well as to the traditions of Latin and African cultures. Its history as a nation striving to differentiate itself from its larger neighbors, tradition as a liberal democracy while incorporating monarchist elements in its government and politics, and continuous interaction and involvement with its immigrants create a distinct and unique culture within Sierra. There is a strong sense of national identity interwoven into Sierran culture which unifies all Sierrans regardless of their origins or beliefs. The sense of common culture, history, and ideals are heavily emphasized over one's own race and origins. It is commonly said that anyone who becomes a part of Sierran society does not only assimilate but bring forth their own ideas and add it into the mass culture. While recent immigrants may retain their home country culture and live in ethnically similar enclaves, by the second generation, most immigrants would have become fully assimilated members of Sierran society.

Modern Sierran values and customs are generally a mixture of Anglo-Saxon Protestant and Sinospheric neo-Confucian tradition. Strong work ethic, humility, interdependent balance between individualism and collectivism (selfless individualism), emphasis on the family, and hospitality are all traits of Sierran ethics. Sierra's history as a multicultural nation led to the absorption of various international views. During the 19th and early 20th century, as immigrants from Asia assimilated with the predominantly white population, many adopted English names, converted to Christianity, and learned Western etiquette. At the same time, interest in Confucian ethics and Orientalism overall within the white community allowed a mutual exchange of ideas and values. The Progressive era helped advance allowing a new culture to arise and works such as Mark Culler's Comparison of Western and Oriental Thought encouraged Sierrans to integrate new ideas and customs from each other. As acceptance of differences grew, modern Sierran culture cemented toward the end of World War II and the Protestant-Confucian model became a national standard.

In addition to the mainstream trends of Sierra, there are various distinct subcultures, the most apparent being the culture of the Styxie, a region in the northwestern part of Sierra which lacks Eastern influence and is heavily influenced by republicanism, white nationalism, and a tradition rooted in agriculture and heavy industry.

Customs

A central part of Sierran culture revolves around the four main concepts: self, family, nation, and morality which are broad terms for the various customs and practices rooted in the culture. Self include individual responsibility, selflessness, success, and kindness; family stresses on compassion, love, respect, hierarchy, and honor; nation focuses with brotherhood, loyalty, harmony, and unity; morality encourages faithfulness, self-control, mannerisms, and justice.

Marriage, funerals, and other traditions

Marriage and the family are considered the foundation of Sierran society and thus, a source of contention whenever such traditions are challenged. Idealized marriages must be based on consensual love between a man or a woman (since the 1970s however, it has simply become any two persons regardless of their gender or sex) who have been acquainted with each for sometime. Monogamy, virginity, purity, and fertility are four terms associated with the idealized marriage. Indeed, Sierrans reported less premarital sex or serial monogamy than did other Western nations.

When Sierrans marry, they usually hold two wedding ceremonies: a civil and religious marriage ceremony although in recent years, two of the ceremonies have been merged into one. A civil marriage may be held anywhere and is administered by a legally sanctioned official who commissions the vows and presents the newlyweds their certificates. A religious ceremony is held at a church or other worship house and is administered by the head (e.g., a pastor) who blesses the marriage and presents the couple the rings. At the wedding, family members and friends from both sides are invited to witness the ceremony. The wedding industry is a strong sector in Sierra's economy as thousands of marriages are planned each year requiring extensive amounts of funds and work. At both ceremonies, the bride wears a white wedding dress with a veil while the groom wears a black tuxedo. To Sierrans, the religious ceremony is the official declaration of the couple's matrimony. Following a wedding, the couple is encouraged to consummate based on the belief that a Sierran family should start when the couple is young. A honeymoon is a self-celebration by the couple on their marriage.

Following the death of a Sierran, the decedent's family will display the body in a coffin at their own home or a funeral home for viewing. As more Sierrans die in hospitals than at home, this ceremony offers a chance for family members and friends to part ways from the deceased at a personal level. Mourning lasts for 10 days before the body is brought to a cemetery where the funeral ceremony commences. Usually an open-casket service, religious clergy conduct the memorial ceremony and invited guests may deliver eulogies, testimonies, and other remarks to the deceased and his/her bereaved. Any loud noises and talking during the ceremony is considered impolite. Before the body is buried, the mourners may place flowers on the coffin before it is lowered into a pit made ready for the burial. If the body is to be cremated, the ashes will be placed in an urn and returned to the deceased's family.

Ubiquitous practices and social norms in Sierra which have direct connection to its culture include the importance of gratuity (tipping), a combination of a Western-style handshake and bow, taking off shoes at the home, the expectation of physical intimacy among family and friends (hugging for example), reservedness in the midst of elders, and rendering absolute service to others including strangers in times of distress (Good Samaritan). For the most part, dining etiquette remains predominantly Western except when handling with rice or non-Italian noodle dishes.

Mass media

Television and radio

Five major broadcasting companies dominate Sierra's mainstream media: Royal Broadcasting Service (RBS), Eagle Broadcasting Company (EBC), 16ON, Media Corporation News (MCN), and Tokki Network Company (TNC). Over 60 million Sierrans are subscribed to cable, satellite, or other modes of television broadcasting. On average, a Sierran spends four hours a day watching television programs (including via computers, tablets, or mobile devices). The numbers of hours is higher among younger demographics (up to as much as six and a half hours among the 12-18 age group). Similarly, Sierrans spend about two hours listening to radio programming and music streaming services with younger Sierrans listening to as long as seven hours.

Sierran television programming is world famous with many of television series being produced in Hollywood, a city often described as the "Entertainment Capital of the World". Various genres of television include animated series (notably Sierran anime), cartoons, drama, game shows, reality, sitcom, and talk shows.

Print

Notable Sierran newspapers include the Porciúncula Tribune, the San Francisco Chronicle, the Inland Empire Register, and the San Diego Herald-Review. The top four Sierra-based magazines are Newstar, LT, Food for Thought, and the Popular Informer. Both the newspaper and magazine industries helped relay national issues and opinions to the Sierran people throughout history. During the 20th century, yellow and investigative journalism perforated Sierran news and often sensationalized social issues. This would help booster various platforms seeking to promote their agenda and discredit their opponents (temperance movement during the 1920s depicting alcohol as an absolute vice to anti-communism during the Cold War). Until recent years, newspapers and magazines held considerable influence and relevancy within Sierran politics and society. Since the rise of digital and often free news content found online in the 21st century, many newspapers were forced to provide online versions. Combined with the high cost of publishing and low revenue, the printing industry has suffered in its competition with both television and online news sources. In spite of this, over 7 billion newspapers or magazines were collectively distributed in the year 2013 among Sierra's top 10 best selling.

Internet websites

The most popular websites in Sierra (excluding search engines and web portals) in 2013 were Facebook, YouTube, Wikipedia, Twitter, and Stumbld.

Cinema

Hollywood sign

The iconic sign of the city of Hollywood, the world leader in films and motion pictures.

Hollywood is the primary location for Sierra's film industry and has been regarded as the entertainment capital of the world. Competing with the Hudson's New York City, Hollywood served as a more attractive town for movies to be filmed. After several movies filmed in Hollywood received considerable success in the 1920s and 30s, many entertainment companies were either created or moved to Hollywood. Companies such as The Walt Disney Company, the Warner Bros., Columbia Pictures, 20th Century Fox, and Paramount Pictures are all based either in or around the Hollywood area. The entire filming industry as a whole including independent studios produced 1,092 films in 2011, just short of first place in the most annual output of feature films to Bollywood.

Aside from mainstream Sierran cinema, while not as prolific as English Hollywood films, non-English Sierran cinema companies have been enjoying their own successes with their films within their own target demographics. In 2013, of the 1,002 films produced, 232 were not in English with the majority of that being a film in one of Sierra's non-English official languages (Spanish, Chinese, Vietnamese, Korean, Han, or Japanese). Since the beginning of the 21st century, attempts to reach out non-English-speaking audiences by major filming studios have seen limited success.

The de facto movie rating sytem is the National Committee of Screening Content (NCSC) which is designed to inform parents of any content depicted in a certain film that the parents would find inappropriate for their children. Nearly all mainstream cinema go through the process of rating under NCSC. Other rating systems exist primarily for independent studios or companies.

Music

Modern popular Sierran music can be defined into two immediately distinguishable categories: English and non-English. In both cases of music, they both incorporate traditions and styles from blues, African tribal music, gospel music, and European-style music. Music in Sierra has always been closely tied with its Anglo-American neighbors where the rise of jazz, rock, hip hop, and R&B help create the modern environment of music.

"Mainstream" music is frequently attributed to Sierran pop music (both English and non-English), some forms of rock (alternative or punk), electronica, and R&B. Mainstream is often directed to the general public and intended to appeal to all demographics. Typically, songs from any of the mainstream genres (more heavily inclined towards English pop and R&B) succeed in reaching the Top 40, a list consisting of Sierra's most popular trending songs.

Sierra is the world center for rap music (including gansta rap) and has a strong subculture associated with it. Famous artists from Sierra include Tupac Shakur (2Pac), The Notorious B.I.G., Ice Cube, Eminem, Kendrick Lamar, and Childish Gambino.

In addition, Sierran K-pop and J-pop enjoys a significantly large fanbase domestically and internationally. Both subgenres typically features more same-sex bands (boy or girl bands) than solo artists and is known for their energetic music videos and manicured choreography. Obsession with particular singers (mostly found among teenage girls) have sometimes led to extreme cases requiring legal action. In 2012, one female fan managed to abduct Chae Hoo-Syun from the boy band 4OUR and held him hostage for 3 days in an attempt to marry him. Chae was returned unharmed and the fan was sentenced to 4 years in juvenile detention for kidnapping. Concern over the rise of hyperactive fanbases have led some in the medical field to declare an "epidemic" in Sierra fearing that "fangirls are a dangerous threat to society". As of 2014, no action or steps have been taken to confront this issue.

The major music recording companies in Sierra are OP Entertainment, Polygon Records, Universal Music Group, and Warner Music Group which are all represented under the umbrella trade organization, the Sierran Music Forum.

Literature, philosophy, and the arts

Yosemite painting

Yosemite Valley by German-Sierran Albert Bierstadt (1868) is a cherished example of Sierran art.

Sierran literature often focuses on realistic depictions on life with significant emphasis on character development. At least until contemporary times, Sierran novels focused more on the character and theme than the plot. Traditional Sierran literary style is described as passionate, romantic, and bold. Prominent Sierran writers such as Matthew Gregory Hampton (1842-1914) and Christopher Zhou (1908–76) wrote stories meant to invoke strong emotions to their readers. Often times, novels were a commentary on relevant issues that Sierra had during the time of the novels' publication.

The Widow and Her Other Distasteful Sultry Selves (1899), is a famous and controversial example of contemporary Sierran literature by Kent Blume that centers around a widow's life after the devastating loss of her husband. Marked with sensational and emotionally charged writing, the novel criticized the traditional views on women and the condescending wealthy. Other well-known literary novels that followed the Sierran literary style include I, Only Then (1903), The Unreported Letters ([1912], Bethany (1932), and The Melodramatics [1933]). In addition to literature, poetry and drama flourished with famous contributors including Judith Fonseca Lestrange ("Judith Fonseca Lestrange/Selected works#A Seaside Eulogy" (1838) and "The Temple of Anubis" (1850), and Louise-Philippe Laverdière ("Chestnuts" [1899], "Jetty Gold" [1911], and "Eyes of Paper Men" [1917])

Sierran idealism was the first major philosophical school of thought to have arose in Sierran society. Tied with the romanticist styles of literature, Sierran idealism emphasized on the power of ideas and was decidedly individually-collectivist—a nod toward the shifting culture of Sierra from Western to a fusion of Western Protestant Confucian ideas which compromised between individualism and collectivism. Since the end of the first half of the 20th century, pragmatism and the analysis of political philosophy became popular.

Sierran visual arts during the 19th century was realist and borrowed from European naturalism. At the turn of the 20th century, Sierran impressionism and modernism became very popular. Like many other Western countries, Sierra experienced the spread of the artistic movements of Dadaism and anti-art between World War I and World War II. Since then, a revival in romanticism and the rise of reactionary postmodernism have led Sierran art.

Cuisine and dining

Sierran cuisine often emphasizes on using fresh, local ingredients and integrating them together to create a collective taste. Wheat and rice both enjoy the status as Sierra's primary cereal grains in the Sierran diet. Sierran dishes often use one of the two staple grains and a combination of meat, vegetables, and fruit. Avocados, tomatoes, potatoes, lettuce, corn, carrots and broccoli are frequently used in Sierran cuisine. In terms of meat, beef and chicken are used more often than pork, lamb, or other meats. Pork is frequently instead, barbecued as a meal of its own. With its location along the Pacific Ocean, Sierran cuisine readily makes use of seafood and may use it as a substitute for meat in wheat/rice dishes. Salmon, tuna, and shrimp are frequently used for various dishes such as fish tacos. Prominent dishes which incorporate these local tastes include hot boxes, which include a variety of rice dishes such as the Salsi shawarma and the Pacific plate.

Hamburgers are an example of Sierra's use of variety with a bun (wheat), meat patty (beef), dairy (cheese), and vegetables/fruits (lettuce and tomatoes). Sierra has often been credited as one of the pioneers in modern fast-food, and the key force in popularizing its prevalence throughout Anglo-America and worldwide. Fast-food chains such as McDonald's, In-N-Out Burger, Il Tesoro di Sofia, Fifi's, and La Boca Burgers all hail from Sierra, and have contributed immensely towards Anglo-American cuisine at a greater scale.

Sierran cuisine is strongly fusionist with influences from American, Mexican, and East Asian cuisine. Chinese, Greek, Indian, Italian, Korean, Japanese, Lebanese, Mexican, Thai, Vietnamese food are all found everywhere throughout Sierra which have been well-received and integrated into. In addition to the general cuisine, there are prominent regional cuisines which have been renowned for their dishes and chefs including those from the Channels and the Styxie. Internationally renowned chefs from Sierra include Renaud Sartre and Wendall Yamada, both of whom have contributed greatly to Sierran gastronomy and modern cuisine.

Dining etiquette and experience

Sierran chopsticks

Various chopsticks used for eating Sierran rice/noodle dishes.

Eating is considered an important social activity which help reinforce familial and friendly relations. In formal environments and occasions, eating is led by a host or hostess who is either the main cooker of the meals or the person who pays for the bill. Traditionally, the eldest participant begins with a prayer and then receives the first dish by the host. Afterwards, each person may begin eating by order of age or prominence. In casual settings, Sierrans often choose to share their bills and provide generous tipping for their waiters.

When eating rice and noodle dishes (with the exception of Italian pasta), it is customary to eat with chopstick and a spoon. The general rule of thumb is to use the chopstick for any pieces of meat, vegetable, or fruit while the spoon is used to scoop up rice, grains, or clumped-up foodstuffs. A fork and knife may be used when handling tough meats such as steak or roast beef. When consuming soups, a special Chinese-styled spoon is used to scoop up the liquid and solid contents of the soup. Regional differences in dining situations are minimal although are more pronounced when it comes to the rigidity of maintaining proper dining etiquette. Conservative families typically may not commence eating without conducting a prayer and ensuring the elders eat first while more liberal families may simply eat upon each individual's own discretion.

Side dishes including pickled vegetables, fish sauce, mashed potatoes, salads, and macaroni are a reflection of Sierra's strong influences from different cultures. The dishes may work as an appetizer or a balanced dish to even out the strength of heavy meals. Desserts such as ice cream, jello, fruits, or other sweets conclude large meals.

Alcoholic beverages may be consumed during meals. Beer is typically reserved for casual settings while wine is reserved for more formal and personal meals.

When dining out, especially at fast food restaurants, most dining conventions are ignored because of the general casualness and manner of such environments. Food is encouraged to be eaten without any utensils (hamburgers, fried chicken, and hot dogs). Where it would be considered exceptionally rude and uncivil to eat with one's own hands with a normal Sierran meal, the opposite view is held at casual fast food dining where eating with utensils is considered as strange or even insulting. Unless utensils are provided (provided when the dish is particularly known to be messy), requesting a utensil to eat with a meal designed to be eaten with the hands is frowned upon. The rule of yielding a meal to elders first still apply and other unacceptable acts which remain include chewing with one's mouth open, reaching over the table to get a dish, and taking food from another person's plate.

Sports

Staples Stadium

An aerial view of the Staples Center, home of the Porciúncula Lakers and Porciúncula Clippers basketball teams.

Sports hold an important role in Sierran culture where being fit and healthy is not only positive but virtuous. Basketball is by far the most popular sport in Sierra followed by American football, baseball, and soccer. Professional and college sports team often compete in tournaments based around a playoff. Tournament games are frequently televised and open to the public which attract large audiences. Beach sports such as surfing and volleyball are very popular during summer and winter sports such as skiing and snowboarding are possible especially in mountainous areas. Well-known sports teams include the Porciúncula Lakers (basketball), the Porciúncula Dodgers (baseball), the Porciúncula Angels, the Anaheim Ducks (hockey), the Porciúncula Galaxy (soccer), the San Francisco 49ers (football), San Diego Chargers (football) and Santa Clara Darts (American football). Major sports team usually segregate male and female players from playing together as one team. For example, in Porciúncula, the Lakers basketball team is composed entirely of males and does not allow females to participate. Instead, if a female wished to play for the Lakers, they could only play for the Laker's female equivalent team, the Porciúncula Sparks. Concerns over safety on the field and the locker have prevented females from participating in male-only sports teams. At the collegiate level, there has been a gradual process allowing unisex teams to form. The prevailing argument is that if females are already allowed to enlist in the military for combat, then they should also be allowed to participate in friendly sports games. The Ministry of Culture which includes the oversight of sports has voiced their support for the integration of male and female teams.

At schools, for the physical education curriculum, sports are often played in order to expose children to the concepts and practices of exercise, teamwork, and sportsmanship. Students who excel in athletics may receive scholarships to attend to play at a university especially if they excelled in a high school sports team. Cheating through the means of doping, illicit drug use, or other means is considered an immensely dishonorable act in sports and may result in legal action, expulsion, or other disciplinary action. Many athletes who were exposed of their actions have been shunned by the public as a result of this large stigma against cheating.

Sierra has hosted the Olympic Games twice in Porciúncula in 1932 and 1984. Sierran athletes are one of the most decorated in the world with over 1,500 medals including 563 gold as of the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia.

Public holidays and celebrations

Federal holidays

There are ten federal public holidays that require all government facilities to close and allow employees paid time off. Contrary to popular belief, businesses are not obligated to close during any of these holidays although nearly all do.

Holiday Date Information
New Year's Day January 1 The first day of the new year in the Gregorian calendar.
Remembrance Day February 27 Honors all those whom have sacrificed their lives for Sierra and humanity.
Independence Day June 14 Celebrates the independence of Sierra from Mexico and Sierran heritage.
Her Royal Highness's Birthday August 12 The birthday of the ruling sovereign, Angelina II.
Labor Day September 1 Celebrates the contributions and labor of all Sierrans.
Preservation Day Second Monday of October Respect and reverence of the traditions and customs of Sierran society.
Sierra Day (Constitution Day) November 27 Celebration of the promulgation of the current constitution proclaimed in 1858.
Thanksgiving Day November 28 Giving thanks, blessings, and joy with family and friends.
Christmas Day December 25 The most important Christian holiday; a traditional day chosen for the birth of Jesus of Nazareth. Gifts are frequently exchanged.
Goodwill Day December 26 A bank holiday whose exact purpose and origins is often believed to simply be a day to appreciate Christmas gifts and anticipate for the new year.

Commonly observed non-federal holidays

While not receiving federal sanction, various civil holidays are celebrated and observed. Some businesses choose to close on specific holidays (e.g. an Asian business choosing to close during the Lunar New Year). Provinces can also choose to officially sanction a holiday and close on such days.

Holiday Date Information
Lunar New Year (Simplified Chinese: 农历新年; Vietnamese: Tết; Korean: 설날) Between late January and early February The most important holiday of the Chinese calendar, it begins on the first day of the calendar. The celebration can extend from one day to nearly two weeks. The new year also conincides a de facto celebration of East and Southeast Asian culture in general, the Asian and Pacific Islander Heritage Month.
Valentine's Day February 14 Celebration of love, romance, and a time for Sierrans to profess their feelings for one another. Candy and cards are often exchanged.
St. Patrick's Day March 17 Celebration of Irish Sierran heritage and culture. Heavy drinking and mischievous pranks often done this day.
April Fool's Day April 1 Widespread pranks, jokes, and tricks are done to each other on this day.
Earth Day April 22 Celebrates the environment and nature.
Easter Sunday following the Paschal Full Moon, day of observance varies from March 22 to April 25. Celebration of the Resurrection of Jesus Christ. Also coincides with the Jewish holiday of Passover. Church attendance, egg hunting, public outings, and roast beef/ham eating is done on this day.
Cinco de Mayo (Spanish: Fifth of May) May 5 Celebration of Mexican Sierran heritage and culture. Also observed as the celebration of Latin American culture as a whole in general.
Mother's Day Second Sunday in May Celebration of mothers and motherhood.
Children's Day June 12 Celebration of infants, children, teenagers, and students. Traditional date when schools (excluding year round schools) end their school year and conduct graduation ceremonies.
Father's Day Third Sunday in June Celebration of fathers and fatherhood.
Election Day October 16 or the second Friday of October Date where major federal, provincial, and local elections take place. Election Day is held on the second Friday of October if the election lands on either a Saturday or Sunday.
Mid-Autumn Festival (Moon Festival; Chinese: 中秋節, Vietnamese: Tết Trung Thu, Korean: 추석, Japanese: 月見) 15th day of the eighth month of the Chinese calendar Celebration of the fall harvest. Commonly observed in a Westernized form by Sierrans of all backgrounds with fairs, concerts, barbecues, and mooncakes.
Halloween October 31 Children and adults dress up in costumes and go trick-or-treating for candy. Also a day for ghost hunting and viewing horror movies.
All Saint's Day November 1 Honoring saints, ancestors, and the deceased. It is called and celebrated as the Day of the Dead or Dio de Los Muertos in Mexican Sierran communities.
Kwanzaa December 26 through January 1 Celebration of African-Sierran heritage and culture.
New Year's Eve December 31 Final day of the Gregorian calendar which is celebrated with fireworks and parties.

Symbols

Flag of Sierra (civil).svg
The flag of Sierra
Coat of arms of Sierra.svg
The national coat of arms of Sierra

The flag of Sierra is a tricolor fess of blue, yellow, and red, and a variant of the flag of the Kingdom. The flag was officially adopted on June 23, 1950 following the promulgation of the Charter for the Kingdom of Sierra when Sierra was downgraded to a constituent country. To avoid confusion with the Kingdom, Sierra was given a simple tricolor version of the flag without its signature encircled star. The Sierran flag bears close resemblance to that of the flags flown by the Republicans during the Sierran Civil War. The original flag of Sierra, now the Kingdom's, was adopted alongside the constitution in 1858 as designed personally by Smith C. Miller who became Sierra's first king as Smith I. Because of this, the Kingdom's flag is often called, the "King's Flag" or the "King's Standard" while the national flag, the "Republican Flag" or the "People's Flag". Contemporary explanations for the flag's colors are as followed: the blue stripe represents freedom and liberty; the yellow stripe represents prosperity and happiness; the red stripe represents the blood of all those who have and willing to sacrifice their lives for Sierra.

Sierra Passport

The passport of Sierra features the coat of arms of Sierra.

The national coat of arms of Sierra is a lesser variant of the arms of the Kingdom. Unlike the greater arms, it does not feature a mantle or crown, and is extensively used by the "civil" wing of the Sierran government. The arms features a chief displaying a centered-version of the Sierran flag, two supporters (i.e., a grizzly bear and a deer), a black double-headed eagle as the crest, and a tricolor ribbon bearing the national motto: "LIBERTAS SINE SACRIFICO" (Liberty without sacrifice). The flag featured on the seal represents the collective unity and support of the Sierran people. The dexter supporter, the bear, represents strength and courage while the sinister supporter, the deer, represents the elegance and peaceful mannerisms of Sierra's culture. The double-headed eagle represent the monarchy which is indebted to its people and ensures to protect Sierra at all costs. The two heads look both ways to ensure that Sierra is protected from threats both internal and external. The significance of the eagle being black is meant to represent the monarchy's apolitical role in government. The monarchy has no service to any interests except that of Sierra's and therefore unswayed by politics and ideology. The coat of arms are used to represent the government and is found on all government documents, offices, commissions, and property.

Anthems

There are two anthems that Sierra has which are For the Love of Our Union (national) and God, Country, and Crown (royal). The anthems were adopted on two separate dates: April 3, 1859 (For the Love of Our Union) and June 23, 1859 (God, Country, and Crown). Both anthems were composed by the Royal Orchestra of Sierra, a now defunct government body that handled and preserved the use of the anthem. Today, the Parliament's library maintains the anthem. Both anthems are often played together at national celebrations and other patriotic gatherings even though the latter anthem was originally composed to represent the monarchy alone. For the Love of Our Union has been modified four times, the most recent time being in 1997 when Japanese was added as one of Sierra's officially recognized languages. The anthem is composed into nine stanzas with the refrain in English while the other stanzas in Spanish, Chinese (only in the Mandarin dialect and not Cantonese however, despite the other Chinese dialect also receiving co-official status with Mandarin), Vietnamese, Korean, Thai, Han, and Japanese. The melody and rhythm of the song has been refined to accommodate all of the language pieces. The Serran language, the most recent language officially recognized by the Sierran government in 2014, has yet to be included within the anthem although the language's inclusion has received limited support from its speakers and politicians.

For the Love of Our Union

Instrumental version of For the Love of Our Union

For the Love of Our Union lyrics
Language Lyrics English translation
English
For the Love of Our Union!
Proud Sierrans, proclaim the word!
For the Love of Union!

Always shine O Blessèd Union! (x4)
Spanish
Español
Para nuestra Unión se podemos!
Nunca olvidaré nuestra Unión!
Para nuestra Unión se podemos!
Siempre con Dios nuestra gloria!
For our Union we can!
Never forget our Union!
For Union we can!
Always with God our glory!
Chinese (Mandarin)
中國普通話
對於我們國家的愛!
(Pinyin: Duìyú wǒmen guójiā de ài!)
決不投降,決不放棄!
(Jué bù tóuxiáng, jué bù fàngqì!)
對於我們國家的愛!
(Duìyú wǒmen guójiā de ài!)
直到死亡,我們前進!
(Zhídào sǐwáng, wǒmen qiánjìn!)
For the love of our country!
Never surrender, never give up!
For the love of our country!
Until death, we move forward!
Vietnamese
Tiếng Việt
Đất nước của chúng tôi cho tất cả!
Anh chị em đón về nhà!
Đất nước của chúng tôi cho tất cả!
Học bổng đến bây giờ!
Our country for all!
Brothers and sisters welcome home!
Our country for all!
Fellowship come now!
Korean
한국어
일어나 내 백성을 봐!
(Romanized: Il-eona nae baegseong-eul bwa!)
함께 건설하자!
(Hamkke geonseolhaja!)
일어나 내 백성을 봐!
(Il-eona nae baegseong-eul bwa!)
우리 조합은 성장할 것입니다!
(Uli johab-eun seongjanghal geos-ibnida!)
Wake up my people!
Let's build it together!
Wake up my people!
Our Union will grow!
Thai
ภาษาไทย
สำหรับความรักของยูเนี่ยนของเรา!
(Romanized: S̄ảh̄rạb khwām rạk k̄hxng yū neī̀yn k̄hxng reā!)
ความสุขคือคนที่ยูเนี่ยนนี้!
(Khwām s̄uk̄h khụ̄x khn thī̀ yū neī̀yn nī̂!)
จงชื่นชมยินดีขอขอบคุณ!
(Cng chụ̄̀nchmyindī k̄hx k̄hxbkhuṇ!)
สำหรับความรักของยูเนี่ยนของเรา!
(S̄ảh̄rạb khwām rạk k̄hxng yū neī̀yn k̄hxng reā!)
For the love of our Union!
Blessèd are the people, this Union!
Rejoice, give thanks!
For the love of our Union!
Han
漢的語言
我們的国, 我們的国! (Romanized: Atchinn bansa, atchinn bansa!)
多的愛該物的那我們它的地面上? (Makkanonn matchayunn natchi ittann rubasa?)
我們的国, 我們的国! (Atchin bansa, atchin bansa!)
有大更星們上! (Mairagimasu bitsuinmansa!)
My country, My country!
How much do we love this land?
My country, My country!
More than all the stars!
Japanese
日本語
この土地を見よ!
(Romanji: Kono tochi o miyo!)
すべての偉大な国家!
(Subete no idaina kokka!)
この土地を見よ!
(Kono tochi o miyo!)
否定できない真実!
(Hiteidekinai shinjitsu!)
Behold this land!
Great nation of all!
Behold this land!
Undeniable truth!
English
For the Love of Our Union! (x2)
Proud Sierrans, proclaim the word!
For the Love of Our Union! (x2)
Always shine O Blessèd Union!
Such that there never was.
For the Love of This Union.


For the Love of Our Union! (x2)
Proud Sierrans, proclaim the word!
For the Love of Our Union! (x2)
Always shine O Blessèd Union!
For the Love of Our Union!
Queen Calafia

A statue of Queen Calafia, one of the various personified representations of Sierra.

Sierra is most often personified as a grizzly bear, an allusion to the same type of bear found on the coat of arms and the original flag of the former California Republic—the predecessor to Sierra. In contemporary times, the meerkat, which was introduced to Sierra in the late 19th century, has also been used to associate Sierra. A Sierran variant of the female figure Columbia (usually understood to represent the United States, and then later, the United Commonwealth or Missouri) is also used to represent the country. Alternatively, the mythical Queen Califia can be used to represent Sierra as the "spirit of the kingdom". She was a character described in the story Las sergas de Esplandián (The Adventures of Esplandián) by Garci Rodríguez de Montalvo, a Spanish writer credited in sparking interest in 15th century Europe to explore the Americas. De Montalvo wrote that Califia was a black warrior queen who ruled an army of female warriors and griffins. The story was a commercial success and led to the European discovery of Sierra. The historic name, California derives from this persona.


See also

References

  1. Constitution of Sierra, Article I, Section IV
  2. Constitution of Sierra, Article I, Section V
  3. "Sierra Population Clock". Sierra Royal Bureau of Census. Retrieved August 23, 2014. 
  4. "Official Census Report, 2010". Sierra Royal Bureau of Census. Retrieved December 23, 2010. 
  5. 5.0 5.1 5.2 5.3 "World Economic Outlook Database: Kingdom of Sierra". International Monetary Fund. April 2014. Retrieved April 9, 2014. 
  6. 6.0 6.1 The Great Book of Politics and Governments, Fifth Edition. Liberty Press. 2009. p. 343.
  7. Our Kingdom of Sierra. Malthus-Fraizer Books. 2003. p. 6
  8. Fronatt, Giuseppe; Tate, Lizbeth. (2010). United As One: A Comprehensive Guide to Sierra's Culture. Porciúncula: Park & Bae.
  9. Paul, Abraham (2001). The Ambition of a Kingdom. Porciúncula: Crystal Press.
  10. Peterson, Chris Daniels. (1997). Sierran Immigration. Porciúncula: Park & Bae.
  11. Dominguez, Jesus. (November 11, 2011) "A Reflection of Our People". Porciúncula Tribune.
  12. Rodriguez, Carmen (2007). Development of Golden Kingdom. pp. 32-39.
  13. Padgett, Francis (1997). World At War. pp. 56-58
  14. Nguyen, Richard (2005). The Great Nuclear Question. pp. 15-42
  15. Lee, Hughes; Harris, Scott (2013). The Sierran Paegant. Collegiate History Series. p. 532.
  16. Ong, Tyler (2010). The Red and Purple. pp. 18-24.
  17. Stevens-Brooks, Martha (2014). In This Day of Age. pp. 32-35
  18. Odalfson, Jamie. "What's it Going to Take to Combat Terrorism?". Inland Empire Register.
  19. Beevor, Riley. (October 19, 2014) "Opinion: Attacks on La Paz foreshadows a more ominous future war." Inland Empire Register.
  20. "Spanish Central". Meriam-Webster, Incorporated. Retrieved September 29, 2014. 
  21. Constitution of Sierra, Article I, Preamble
  22. 22.0 22.1 22.2 22.3 Moore, Gilbert (2004). The Origins of the Sierran Nation. National's Press.
  23. Steuben, Edwin (June 21, 1856). "Delegates decide on name for new country at convention". San Gabriel Times.
  24. Blackburn, Thomas Clarence (1989). The Standardized Conventions and Forms of Sierran English. Porciúncula: Gold Coast State University Press, pp. 13-14.
  25. Goodjoy, Lamar (2001). Your Guide to Sierra: Territorial Edition p. 17.
  26. Perez, Kara (December 3, 2006). "Offensive terms you shouldn't say about Sierrans". The Pacific.
  27. Chueng, Henry. The Golden Kingdom: A Comprehensive History of Chinese-Sierrans. Porciúncula: Malthus-Frazier Books, p. 5.
  28. Kirkson, Michael. The Indigenous Peoples of the Americas. New York City: Long Island Press, p. 16.
  29. Crespin, Dalton. The Native and the Conquistador, pp. 10-12.
  30. Early Native Sierran Civilization and Life before European Contact. Emeryville: University of Santa Clara, Berkeley, pp. 2-18.
  31. Barrios, Nick. Spanish Empire: Gold, Glory, and God. Crystal Press, p. 21.
  32. Rodríguez de Montalvo, Garci (1526) [1496]. Las sergas de Esplandián [The Adventures of Esplandián] (in Spanish). "Sabed que ala diestra mano de las Indias ouo una Isla llamada California mucho llegada ala parte del paraiso terrenal la qual sue poblada de mugeres negras sin que algun uaro entre ellas ouiesse: que casi como las amazonas..." (The first mention of "California" occurs on the unnumbered page after page CVIII, in the right column.)
  33. Davidson, John (1910). The origin and the meaning of the name California. San Francisco: Geographical Society of the Pacific.
  34. Kelsey, Harry (1986). Juan Rodríguez Cabrillo, Huntington
  35. Kelsey (1986), p. 143.
  36. Kelsey (1986), pp. 145-55.

Further reading and Sierra-related topics

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