A collection of Australian flags are lined up prior to a press conference after the Council of Australian Governments (COAG) meeting held in Sydney, Thursday, July 23, 2015. (AAP Image/Dean Lewins) NO ARCHIVING
A collection of Australian flags are lined up prior to a press conference after the Council of Australian Governments (COAG) meeting held in Sydney, Thursday, July 23, 2015. (AAP Image/Dean Lewins) NO ARCHIVING DEAN LEWINS

Do you have what it takes to be an Australian citizen?

SO IMAGINE if we all had to sit this great government citizenship test that all comers to Australia have to pass before we allow them to refer to themselves as dinky-di Aussies.

I'd say there would be a lot of us that may have to relinquish that God-given right to bear that Southern Cross tattoo or wear thongs as formal wear and start studying those nice, white history books again.

Needless to say if you are born here you are free to be as ignorant as you like and wander the streets like a boofhead with impunity, because it doesn't matter whether you know Which official symbol of Australia identifies Commonwealth property? or What arm of government has the power to interpret and apply laws? or if all states have the same constitution. You fluked the privilege of being born on golden soil so knowing stuff like that is irrelevant right?

We also like our citizens to have the ability to be able to express free speech whenever they like, even if it condemns and perpetuates unfair stereotypes or perpetuates racism.

Like the citizenship test does when it asks whether it's okay to beat your wife and in the same breath queries female genital mutilation and child marriage; a three-pronged inquiry for a specific kind of newcomer because lord knows we know true blue Aussies don't mutilate children or marry them in this country. Two out of three ain't bad hey boofheads?

While it's nice to think this test weeds out suspicious, unpatriotic types that ironically already call Australia home, it also seems like a very insular, one-sided practice.

What do we know about the cultural backgrounds of our newest citizens? Not as much as they are expected to know about us it seems.



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