News

Vegan denied passport for being 'annoying'

A woman has been denied a second application for a Swiss passport after local residents took offence to her rejection of traditions and her "annoying" campaigning.

Nancy Holten, 42, who was born in the Netherlands, moved to Switzerland when she was eight. She is fluent in Swiss German and her children have Swiss citizenship.

The animal rights activist has campaigned publicly against the local traditions of putting bells around cows' necks and piglet racing, according to The Local.

In her village within the canton of Aargau, Ms Holten, a vegan, has rubbed locals up the wrong way by giving interviews to the media about her views on animal rights.

"The sound that cowbells make is a hundred decibel. It is comparable to a pneumatic drill. We also would not want such a thing hanging close to our ears." she reportedly told the media.

"The animals carry around five kilograms around their neck. It causes friction and burns to their skin," she has said in interviews, according to the Daily Mail.

In Switzerland, local residents have a say in a person's passport application.

Do you find Vegans annoying?

This poll ended on 26 January 2017.

Current Results

Yes. They're always preaching at you

22%

No. I agree with what they believe

52%

Depends on the Vegan

17%

Yes. I love my meat.

6%

This is not a scientific poll. The results reflect only the opinions of those who chose to participate.

Ms Holten's first attempt at naturalisation was made in 2015, when she was approved by local authorities but rejected by 144 out of 206 residents in a vote.

"I think I was too strident and spoke my mind too often," Ms Holten told The Local, adding her intention had not been to attack Swiss traditions but that, in the case of the cowbell, her complaints had been motivated by animal welfare.

She said Switzerland is her home and a place where she has friends and relatives and work.

Tanja Suter, the president of the local Swiss People's Party, claimed Ms Holten has a "big mouth" and residents had not wanted to give her the gift of citizenship "if she annoys us and doesn't respect our traditions".

Urs Treier, a spokesperson for the local government administration in the village, told The Local residents know the legal requirements for Ms Holten's naturalisation have been met, but that if a person who puts themselves in the spotlight and rebels against accepted traditions in a local community "it can cause the community to not want such a person in their midst".

Ms Holten's second attempt at naturalisation was rejected in November and has now been sent to the cantonal government in Aargau, where it could still be approved. 

Topics:  animal rights editors picks offbeat vegan


Stay Connected

Update your news preferences and get the latest news delivered to your inbox.

Juvenile girl caught drink driving with carload of people

Checks revealed that she did not hold a driver's licence

Shark nets to be removed early

Shark meshing nets

Trail nets have been in the water for almost six months

Hemp fan reaps what he sows

Stall assistant Bubaloo Fahy at the Hemp Foods Australia stall at Mullumbimby Farmers' Market. PHOTO: KATE O'NEILL

Businessman and campaigner celebrates legalisation of hemp as food

Local Partners

Former sushi operator fined over exploitation of workers

PENALISED a total of $136,250 for the "deliberate and calculated" exploitation of young Korean workers and using false records to try to cover it up.

Ten awesome things to do this week

Editor of  Express Examiner Susanna Freymark interviews Casino's 2015 Mr Beef Chad Taylor.

From Mr Beef in Casino to Byron Bay Rugby

Joseph's biblical return to Ballina

LEADING ROLE: Award-winning actor Brian Pamphilon as Joseph.

Ballina Players upcoming production

First female superhero film in 12 years

AMAZON: Actress Gal Gadot in a scene from the film Wonder Woman.

Wonder Woman opens next Thursday

Karl Stefanovic's rant about Schapelle Corby 'a bit rich'

The fact is Stefanovic is paid extremely well by a television network that lives and dies by ratings.

Could Schapelle be heading for Gladstone?

Australian Schapelle Corby is escorted by Bali Police at the parole office in Denpasar, Bali, Indonesia, 27 May 2017.

Schapelle's mother teases her free daughter could be Gladstone bound

Six things you never knew about Men in Black

Mushu the pug

It's been 20 years since Men in Black first hit cinemas

10 strange stories behind famous sex scenes

Khaleesi and Khal Drogo in a steamy moment.

Every set has their own way of filming sex scenes

HBO spills new details on Game of Thrones’ final season

Game of Thrones’ eighth and final season will only have six episodes.

New details about what to expect from the eighth, final instalment.

Karl’s rant on Corby: ‘Made to look like idiots’

Karl Stefanovic is sick of hearing about Schapelle Corby.

Today co-host launched a tirade against Schapelle Corby media circus

Shot at the live shows slips through Sally's fingers

Sally Skelton and Bojesse Pigram pictured after their battle performance on The Voice.

Sunshine Coast singer's dramatic elimination from The Voice

This is real estate's billion-dollar man

Bob Wolff at AREC with John McGrath of McGrath Real Estate.

They don’t call him the “Billion dollar man” for nothing

Man's amazing comeback from monster crisis

Pat O'Driscoll agents Penny Keating and Doug Webber sold 56 Agnes St, The Range at auction over the weekend.

NOT long ago, he sold his possessions to pay staff. Now he's back.

Here's your chance to carp about feral pests

Carp might by great fun to catch but they're destroying Australia's watercourses.

Science in the Pub looks at carp and coral trees

SNEAK PEEK: What new shopping centre is going to look like

Artist impression of the proposed redevelopment of the cinema and shopping complex on Jonson St, Byron Bay.

Mercato billed as regional NSW's most sustainable shopping complex

How Toowoomba house prices compare in Australia

For sale sign in front of home.

Here's what $700,000 will buy you in Toowoomba, Brisbane and Sydney

Ready to SELL your property?

Post Your Ad Here!