My father thinks that he is, at the age of 70, past the time for tests. He thinks he does not need any more to remember and be reminded of things, accept rubbish as facts, fed up with reading unnecessary items and trying to digest their contents.
He thought that he would have peace of mind at this age, but he was wrong.
Howard will test him now about Australian values.
Howard will ask him the dumb questions like: what are the NRL rules? Do you play cricket? Which beach you are going to usually? And what is the slip-slop-slap? What is the official language of Australia? Where can you find wombats?...
But how will Howard ask him about the Australian civilization?
Would he ask him: who conducted the first genocide of the Aboriginal people? Or would the question be more tricky as: who did bring civilization to Aboriginals? Would he dare to ask him about his feeling about the meaning of Australia Day?
How would the questions be formulated about the Australian participation in Imperialists' wars in Vietnam, Korea ... and before that in the First and Second World Wars?
Would my father be asked about his opinion on the dumbness of Sir Menzies and how did he succeed in fooling Australians for around 2 decades? Or he would be required to mention the achievements of the “Greatest Australian PM”?
Would my father be enforced to lie about his opinion on the war on Iraq and its legitimacy? Would his criticism of the lies of this government about “illegal migrants”, “queue jumpers”, “kids overboard”... be tolerated?
My father asked me a tricky question. He asked what is the relation between the timing of this discussion paper and the fact that English migrants are refusing to take up citizenship. He let me know that there are more than 800,000 (mostly Britsh citizens) who are refusing to give up European citizenship for an Australian one.
Now, and knowing my father's progressive views, I am wondering how many decades under a Liberal government it will take him to pass this simple test?
I until now cannot see how the people can be tested for their feelings?
Does anybody think that citizenship is an issue that can be tested in the same manner as Chemistry and Physics? Can any clever creature compare feeling of belonging with the understanding of the English grammar?
Although I know that my father is speaking English very well, I also know how stubborn he is.
He would not accept the logic of “terra nullius” to justify genocides and colonisation.
He would prefer to stay stateless rather than to accept the lies of why we invaded Iraq.
My father lived all his life in a country where football (or what Aussies call soccer) is a religion, but failed to learn its rules. He also considers it as a “waste of time, energy and a stupid thing to run for hours to catch “a piece of rubber”.
I can imagine that we would need a miracle to convince him to watch a cricket match, let alone to learn its rules.
He lived all his life in a tribal country where everything could be done easily by “connections” and bribes, but refused to participate in this and lived his life the “hard way”.
I am sure that none can convince him to lie just on the day of this citizenship test to say things like:
- Australian government was right to lock up innocent kids, women and men in detention for years.
- Australian government is the most pro-multiculturalism government this land had in the last century.
- Robert Menzies was not a lying fool, and James Cook was not a criminal butcher
- Australian government is not committing war crimes by invading Iraq and Afghanistan
Frankly, it would need a “divine intervention” to convince him to start lying at this age, start eating sausages, walk nude at Bondi, accept the lies of Menzies and Howard and support the war on Iraq.
Would he ever pass this test and get Australian citizenship!!!
But if this is what is required: do you think he cares!!!