Europe and USA – same same but different

Europe and the USA are similar in many ways. Both are roughly the same size, have about the same number of states/countries, even the average income is (roughly) compatible. There are differences, too, and many of them. While for most differences a US state and a European country can be found that share some commonality, there are two points on which Europe and the USA are radically different as a whole.

First one is morals. When I turn the TV on, what comes on right after the evening news? I’ll give you a hint – its Dutch TV. Anyone who’s seen a Dutch movie will instantly know the right answer – nude! Not speedos, not topless, no – NUDE. People naked as the day they were born. On mainstream national public channels. And nobody is making a fuss about it. That, I think, is symbolizing the huge differences in morals between Europe and the USA. Nipplegate is just inconceivable in even the most conservative parts of Europe. I seriously can’t think of a European country where an incidental one-second exposure of something that might have been a nipple would lead to public outrage of the magnitude unleashed in Nipplegate.

The other difference is guns. Can you buy a gun in the supermarket in the USA? Yes, you can! In most European countries, gun ownership for self-defence is prohibited. Even the Czech Republic which has the most gun-friendly laws in Europe requires the gun-owner to pass tests about firearms legislation, weapon knowledge and first aid, and a medical inspection. American gun-proponents like to point out that Norway and Switzerland have high gun-ownership ratios. But in Norway, almost all guns owned by civilians are hunting rifles, and to get a hunting license the applicant must complete a 30 hour, 9 session course and pass a written exam. And in Switzerland most guns are government-issued rifles held by members of the military reserve. They don’t even have ammo for those!

Personally, I prefer the European approach to these two issues and I don’t think I would like to live in the USA. Because having the choices, I’d much prefer being surrounded by nipples than by guns. And you?


Filed under Europe

3 responses to “Europe and USA – same same but different

  1. Great article! Indifferent about the nudity but the gun control laws (or lack thereof) in the US always leaves me with disbelief..

  2. Pingback: How to choose a (small European) country | Small European Country

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