Why does he have to be from america?

I have a little bit doubt about that sentence. Is it correct?

Here is the context: Someone posted a picture in his profile and caption it "He must have returned from America."

If I comment with that question will it be okay?

  • 3
    Apart from the uncapitalized proper noun, it could be correct, but it really depends on what idea you are trying to express. Please add context - what situation are you thinking of using this phrase in? What is the "little doubt" to which you refer?
    – Adam
    May 9, 2016 at 17:26
  • "To be from" a place means to be native to that place.
    – TimR
    May 9, 2016 at 18:09
  • The same question was posted on ELU from a different user around the same time... english.stackexchange.com/questions/324538/…
    – Othya
    May 9, 2016 at 18:31
  • @othya It is the same user posting under a different name. If you open a profile (english.stackexchange.com/users/172974/javed) you can click through the communities at left to see the pseudonyms a user uses.
    – Adam
    May 9, 2016 at 18:43

1 Answer 1


"America" should have a capital A. Other than that, it is grammatically correct.

But I don't think that's what you want to say. The question,

Why does he have to be from America?

means that you know that he is from America (that is, America is his home), and you want him to be from somewhere else. That kind of question is often used when someone is sad that a person is from somewhere else because they want to have a romantic relationship with that person. But a native English speaker might be able to figure out that is not what you really mean...

Just like me: I don't think that's what you mean. It sounds like you don't understand why the caption says "He must have returned from America" and you want to understand.

In that case, you could ask,

Why do you think he returned from America?

Keep in mind that it could be a joke. In that case, you could simply say,

I don't get it.

Which means you don't understand the joke, and maybe someone will explain for you.

  • +1 ...One other possible meaning for Why does he have to be from America." You have been told to select an American for something, and wonder why "American" was specified. e.g. Hey boss - you told me to hire an American trapeze artist to wash your yogurt tub collection. I understand why you want a trapeze artist, but why does he have to be from America?
    – Adam
    May 9, 2016 at 19:54

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