Wednesday, 11 January 2017

more cow-bell

We learn in Switzerland, the process of attaining citizenship is often contingent on subjective factors, including the opinion of the community that one wishes to join. Although I share some of the applicant’s views on advocating for animal rights, a Dutch woman who has resided in Aargau for all of her adult life has had her citizenship petition rejected for the second time.
Despite meeting all other legal requirements and the lack of formal concerns from authorities, locals have a say in the matter and view her vocal campaigns for among other things banning cow-bells (those huge one’s that might be a discomfort for the cows are only worn on special, ceremonial occasions) as strident and confrontational—and to her neighbours for whom herding is a way of life anything but integrated. Community members don’t often invoke their veto power but did recently reject a long-time American’s application for not being able to name the local lakes and a Kosovar family for wearing jogging pants to their hearing. What do you think? The Dutch woman is refusing to compromise acting on her opinions for the sake of a Swiss passport—which speaks to her convictions, of course, but strengthens the case for her neighbours to voice their opinion as well.