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When it comes to cameras (or anything, really), you need to be careful who you listen to. What they've said is rubbish. Seems the photography group has a lot of Nikon users, and there are always people who use Nikon and think that's the best, others use Canon and think that's the best. The main thing is if you shoot RAW, then the camera will not process the image, and so there will be virtually no difference between the two. The main thing that makes an image nice and sharp is the lens, and both Nikon and Canon make a range of lenses, they have some OK ones that are cheap and some excellent ones that cost more. I would recommend you get a cheapish camera body, but buy a better lens. That's what really makes the difference.
But yeah, I think the EOS 550D or a similar level Nikon would be fine for you, from what I know.
Oh, and about the offensive message you received, all of the photos in your profile are pretty sexy, so some people may get the wrong idea and think you like it. Not that it's ever OK to do so without really knowing the person first! I got similar messages when I posted sexy photos of a friend of mine on Flickr. I told the person we didn't appreciate such comments and they apologised.
An oldie - Canon EOS 30D. I wanna upgrade to a 5D Mark II. Honestly (and many Canon fans will hate me for this), there's not a lot of difference between the Canons and Nikons of each level, and each has some good features the other doesn't.
I think maybe the metering is what you're thinking about, you have to understand how the camera works out the right exposure and know when to make it lighter or darker using exposure compensation (for example, if you shoot a picture with a lot of black, the camera will want to make it lighter and it will look too bright, so you have to underexpose). All cameras (Nikon or Canon etc) will do the same thing in this way (depending on the metering mode you use). Do you have any samples uploaded so I can know what you mean? You don't want to get a new camera and find that the same thing happens, that would be such a waste!