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And the Danes Are Saying, Hey, All We Did Was Print Some Cartoons!

Now don't all rush out and apply for Dutch citizenship, but according to this story, the government of the Netherlands has concluded that before one may seek citizenship in their fair land, you must be comfortable with viewing a topless woman walking toward you out of the sea and two gay men kissing in a park. So the Dutch have produced a film of just such scenes that all applicants for citizenship must buy and watch.

I'm going to go out on a limb here and say that our country will not be doing this.

Or maybe we already do. We call our test "television."

By Marc Fisher |  March 17, 2006; 7:38 AM ET
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Reality Television. Need I say more.

Posted by: John | March 17, 2006 8:40 AM

Hilarious!

Wait a minute...these aren't the same people trying to ban women from wearing burqas are they?

Posted by: Akinoluna | March 17, 2006 9:26 AM

You can get so spaced out in Dutch cafes that you can barely discern nude women from mustachioed kissing men....just a moment while the smoke clears.

Posted by: Bugsy | March 17, 2006 10:18 AM

Brought to you by the same people who have semi-naked prostitutes in store fronts right next to ice cream vendors serving children.

Gotta love them

Posted by: Nick | March 17, 2006 10:40 AM

Bear in mind citizens from the United States, Australia, New Zealand, Canada, Japan and Switzerland are exempt. So my wife probably won't be buying me the video for my birthday.

Posted by: D~ | March 17, 2006 11:21 AM

I want the video anyway...

Posted by: nobody | March 17, 2006 11:29 AM

I love the Dutch. The funny thing about them is they're not really very tame. You'd think with prostitution and drugs legalized they'd be out on the streets taking full advantage - but I'd venture to say that there's probably less lascivious behavior happening in the Netherlands than on the average street corner in Baltimore.

Posted by: adrienne | March 17, 2006 11:31 AM

I love the Dutch. The funny thing about them is they're really very tame. You'd think with prostitution and drugs legalized they'd be out on the streets taking full advantage - but I'd venture to say that there's probably less lascivious behavior happening in the Netherlands than on the average street corner in Baltimore.

Posted by: adrienne | March 17, 2006 11:31 AM

The Dutch also require you to give up your citizenship. Not a fair trade-off even as tempting as EU citizenship is.

Posted by: Just Moved to Holland | March 17, 2006 11:32 AM

Love the TV comment - how very true. An alternative and more interactive "test" would be to put them behind the wheel of a giant, gas-sucking SUV and see whether or not they start driving like they are the only ones on the road - that's truly American. Sounds like the Dutch just don't want any uptight people populating their country.

Posted by: maggie | March 17, 2006 11:55 AM

Citizenship...Why not permanent resident?
In northern Europe a nude woman on a beach or in a Sauna is what you would expect. In the Castro or Coyote Gulch in SFO and on Slide Beach you have enough gays to go around, why worry about Niederland. The Duth worry about other things. Maybe you should walk around the countryyide and talk to the people.
Sy, J R

Posted by: J R Dittbrenner | March 17, 2006 12:06 PM

Bravo for the Dutch - and not such a bad idea to screen out those that want the economic advantages of Europe but keep the mindset of their old countries (like Theo van Gogh's murderer). After reading the article I've thought about becoming an emigre....

Posted by: ChrisnDC | March 17, 2006 12:16 PM

Television? The US cant even go there as two men kissing is too controversial to be shown over the public airwaves in this country. Maybe one day, this country will achive sexual enlightenment like our European brethren, but I am not counting on it.

Posted by: Andrew | March 17, 2006 12:39 PM

Is this a not-so-subtle way of excluding Muslims? Is this the same video they used to torture the prisoners at Abu Ghraib?

Posted by: Kalorama Kat | March 17, 2006 2:58 PM

You don't have to wear wooden shoes, do you? Hey, can we send some of the GOP VA legislators there on a trade mission? Maybe they'll come back enlightened.

Oooooh, Mark, please start a thread about the "what word comes into your head when you think of Bush" poll that Pew Research did. (It's on Wonkette from yesterday.)

Posted by: Peter | March 17, 2006 4:36 PM

"Is this a not-so-subtle way of excluding Muslims?"

No, it's a not-so-subtle way of excluding morons who move to another country and try to overthrow the culture that's already there, to the point of murdering people like Theo Van Gogh who practice free speech. Or morons who move to another country and start insulting, harassing or attacking citizens there (like gays). Gotta problem with gays, feminism, free speech? Stay home! If you move to another country, you have to respect those values.

Posted by: NYC | March 17, 2006 6:34 PM

"and start insulting, harassing or attacking citizens there (like gays)."

Sounds like Missouri.

"Gotta problem with gays, feminism, free speech?"

Move to Idaho!

Posted by: Anonymous | March 20, 2006 5:02 PM

"it's a not-so-subtle way of excluding morons who move to another country and try to overthrow the culture that's already there, to the point of murdering people like Theo Van Gogh who practice free speech"

Precisely. A test built around confronting the applicant with images that are designed to hit Wahabifascists right at their hot buttons is a good idea -- it effectively separates people who can deal with being offended in a civilized adult fashion from those who cannot. The Dutch have decided that Holland doesn't need any more of the latter. (Frankly, I don't think the United States does, either....)

Posted by: steveb | March 20, 2006 5:13 PM

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