Life in the UK

I learned today that the government back in England is launching a citizenship test for foreigners who want to become British. If you want the passport, then you'll have to read a book entitled "Life in the UK", and you'll have to sit a 45-minute test on society, history and culture based on the contents of that book. Apart from this being yet another way Blair is turning England into the next US State, the content of the book is dangerously skewed.

Life in the UK says that to be British you should Respect laws, the elected political structures, traditional values of mutual tolerance and respect for rights and mutual concern. Nice idea but the sentiment would be that much more valuable if the political structures weren't all corrupt and if they government had any mutual concern for its citizens.

Life in the UK tells you that (seriously) if you spill someone's pint in a pub, you should offer to buy them another. It makes no mention of the fact that you'll likely be glassed and end up in the emergency room.

Life in the UK considers that the cost of a solicitor is more important than if they're actually qualified or if they have a conflict of interest.

What's most interesting is that the idea of the citizenship test seems to rely on the premise that the person taking it can (a) read English, (b) speak English and (c) understand English. Given that so many immigrants to the country can bearly (b) and certainly not (a) or (c), I'm guessing it won't be long before the government introduces the new, short-cut way to citizenship which has more to do with how much money you can give them and less to do with the wellbeing of people who already live there.


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