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February 2012
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Hollywood 2 Holland

How is Holland not like New Jersey?

February 19, 2012

What are the similarities between the Netherlands and New Jersey? Let’s see…

The Netherlands is approximately 1.7 times the size of New Jersey (the 46th largest state in the U.S.) looking at it from a land mass perspective. It has 13,084 square miles of land, while New Jersey has 7,790. The Dutch population (16.3 million residents) makes it a tad denser, equalling 1.9 times New Jersey’s population (8.41 million). Weather-wise, the Dutch maritime conditions makes its climate more moderate than that of New Jersey, meaning New Jersey winter’s are colder and summers are warmer on average. Although, as I write this, the temperature is 2 degrees warmer in New Jersey (38 degrees F.) than the Netherlands (36 degrees F.).

Are there major differences between the Netherlands and New Jersey?

I think that is conveyed by news headlines this past week.

Dutch News:

All Schools Must Teach About Homosexuality, Cabinet Decides


N.J. Governor Vetoes Same-Sex Marriage Bill

While not everyone may be supportive of homosexuality in the Netherlands, the government has continued over the years to be supportive of personal rights, and defiant of legislation which discriminates against providing those same personal rights to any specific group of people.

The New Jersey governor, on the other hand, has stopped legislation which the state’s senate and general assembly had approved (both elected bodies by the people of New Jersey), which would have legalized same-sex marriage in New Jersey. His excuse was that the decision should be left up to a vote of the citizens of New Jersey.

A) Why would an approval by the state’s two elected bodies not constitute that approval?

B) When does a democratic government leave the personal rights of a minority group of residents up to a general vote by the majority of residents?

Seems more like the governor may be opposed to offering equal rights when it comes to marriage, and has used his power to assert that position.

So there you have at least one major difference between the Netherlands and New Jersey. One understands what is discriminatory and its responsibility to overcome it, while the other has an elected official who has decided to continue enforcing discrimination aimed at a minority group of residents in his state.






by H2H. Find out more about H2H here.