March 17, 2006, - 11:41 am
By Debbie Schlussel
There have been a lot of calls by liberals and pro-immigrant groups to make our citizenship test more “culture”-oriented, and not focused on essential facts about American government and history. That’s a mistake.
And if the new Dutch citizenship test is any indication of what a “culture” citizenship exam is about, please spare us. Beginning on Wednesday, Dutch would-be immigrants were forced to watch a video of gay men kissing in a park and a topless woman coming out of the ocean to walk on a beach. Is this the remake of “10,” or a citizenship test? Hard to tell.
Wannabe Dutch citizens will also have to memorize a picrure album of famous Dutch people. We can only imagine requiring the correct identification of Jessica Simpson and Britney Spears as a condition for citizenship here. Please, no.
We understand the sentiment. The Dutch are upset by extremist Muslims taking over the Netherlands, and the resulting brutal murders of filmmaker Theo Van Gogh by an Islamist and Member of Parliament Pim Fortuyn by an environmental radical over his anti-immigration and anti-Islamist views (saying they were acting “on behalf of Muslims”). There is also the harassment of Dutch Member of Parliament and former Muslim Ayaan Hirsi Ali. They feel this new set of “tests” will offend Muslims and keep them out. Nice try. It will not. A better solution is to limit the number of immigrants from Muslim countries, something we should be doing here in the U.S.
But it’s clear that the deviant, dumbed-down citizenship test is a mistake we hope the U.S. does not emulate. And the Dutch have already bowed to Islamist pressure, creating a second video minus the gay kisses and bare breasts.
Tags: American government, Britney Spears, Debbie Schlussel There, Jessica Simpson, member of parliament, Parliament Pim Fortuyn, Pim Fortuyn, The Netherlands, Theo Van Gogh, United States