Conscience Laureate

Monday, January 9, 2012


Last week, tougher new immigration reform was instituted in France, making it more difficult for immigrants to become citizens. From now on, candidates for citizenship will not only be tested on French culture and history, but they will also have to demonstrate that they can speak the language as proficiently as an average French 15-year old.  Claude Gueant, France's conservative interior minister, described the process as a "solemn occasion between the host nation and the applicant,”  adding that “migrants had to integrate through language and an adherence to the principles, values and symbols of our democracy."   Reading about France, I wondered what a person would have to do differently to become a French citizen, as opposed to becoming an American citizen.

The new French immigration law also requires potential citizens to swear allegiance to "French values.”  According to the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services,”Deciding to become a U.S. citizen is one of the most important decisions in an individual’s life. If you decide to apply to become a U.S. citizen, you will be showing your commitment to the United States and your loyalty to its Constitution.“  Seems similar, so far.

While the U.S. does not require the same level of language proficiency that France does, there are three language components that the applicant for American citizenship must pass; reading, writing, and speaking. An applicant’s ability to speak English is determined by a USCIS Officer during the eligibility interview. For the reading portion, the applicant must read one out of three sentences correctly. For the writing test, he must write one out of three sentences correctly.

The United States also requires applicants to take a civics test, and sample questions are on the citizenship web siteThe actual civics test the applicants take is NOT a multiple choice test, but an oral test. During the naturalization interview, an applicant is asked up to 10 questions from a list of 100 questions. Six out of 10 questions must be answered correctly in order to pass the civics portion of the naturalization test.

Do you think you could pass a U.S. Citizenship test?  I have copied some sample questions at the end of this blog for readers to try.

Essentially, both countries want potential citizens to be loyal to the country that adopts them.  I agree.  While people can retain their original culture and heritage, if they choose to move to a new country, they should become a part of that country.

If you cannot swear allegiance to the flag, then don’t come!


When was the Declaration of Independence adopted?
December 7, 1787
July 4, 1789
July 4, 1776
March 4, 1789
 What is one responsibility that is only for United States citizens?
obey the law
pay taxes
serve on a jury
be respectful of others
 Who makes federal laws?
the Supreme Court
the President
the states
 What does the Constitution do?
all of these answers
sets up the government
defines the government
protects basic rights of Americans
 Who did the United States fight in World War II?
Austria-Hungary, Japan, and Germany
the Soviet Union, Germany, and Italy
Japan, Germany, and Italy
Japan, China, and Vietnam

What are two rights in the Declaration of Independence?
liberty and justice
life and pursuit of happiness
life and right to own a home
life and death
What did Susan B. Anthony do?
fought for women's rights
founded the Red Cross
the first woman elected to the House of Representatives
made the first flag of the United States

There were 13 original states. Name three.
New York, Kentucky, and Georgia
Washington, Oregon, and California
Maryland, Virginia, and North Carolina
Virginia, North Carolina, and Florida

 What is one thing Benjamin Franklin is famous for?
youngest member of the Constitutional Convention
third President of the United States
inventor of the airplane
U.S. diplomat
3. We elect a U.S. Senator for how many years?
ten (10)
two (2)
four (4)
six (6)
What is one promise you make when you become a United States citizen?
never travel outside the United States
give up loyalty to other countries
disobey the laws of the United States
not defend the Constitution and laws of the United States

1 comment:

  1. and if you believe that...I have a bridge to sell you!