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Thread: “Why Aren’t You Speaking English?”

  1. #421
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    Re: “Why Aren’t You Speaking English?”

    Quote Originally Posted by mac View Post
    They have, but in the cases where it's been shown that speaking in English was a hiring requirement, or where English is required for customer service or safety...they usually win.

    For the record, I have two "first" languages...English and Spanish, and I agree that every nation should have an official language. In my case, it doesn't matter which, but English has been the de facto "official" language, so should remain so in my opinion. Unity of language is an important thing, and requiring one does not make other languages any less legal or respected.
    Most second generation people learn English anyway for practicality so making English the official language is only a symbolic measure - that symbol elevates English over other languages and I'm not interested in that. I can see why people would want it, but I just don't like the way it represents the US.

    That said, I haven't found any documentation on it being illegal to speak anything other than English on US ships or military bases or in any federal buildings. The only thing I've seen close to that is the military's English proficiency requirement. I'm pretty sure language discrimination is not allowed.

  2. #422
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    Re: “Why Aren’t You Speaking English?”

    Quote Originally Posted by theplaydrive View Post
    Most second generation people learn English anyway for practicality so making English the official language is only a symbolic measure - that symbol elevates English over other languages and I'm not interested in that. I can see why people would want it, but I just don't like the way it represents the US.
    I find it ridiculous that it would make the US seam anything other than efficient.

    That said, I haven't found any documentation on it being illegal to speak anything other than English on US ships or military bases or in any federal buildings. The only thing I've seen close to that is the military's English proficiency requirement. I'm pretty sure language discrimination is not allowed.
    It seams the requirement has been relaxed a bit but is still there.

    http://doni.daps.dla.mil/Directives/...rt/5354.1F.pdf
    ”People willing to trade their freedom for temporary security deserve neither and will lose both.” --- Ben Franklin

    Quote Originally Posted by The German View Post
    Sterotypes are mostly based on truths.

  3. #423
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    Re: “Why Aren’t You Speaking English?”

    Quote Originally Posted by mac View Post
    I find it ridiculous that it would make the US seam anything other than efficient.
    An official language is symbolic. It wouldn't make much efficient. Like I said, most 2nd generation people know English. I can't imagine an official language would change anything significantly.

    It seams the requirement has been relaxed a bit but is still there.

    http://doni.daps.dla.mil/Directives/...rt/5354.1F.pdf
    Thanks. It makes sense that English should be required in these circumstances since it's a safety issue.

  4. #424
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    Re: “Why Aren’t You Speaking English?”

    Quote Originally Posted by theplaydrive View Post
    An official language is symbolic. It wouldn't make much efficient. Like I said, most 2nd generation people know English. I can't imagine an official language would change anything significantly.
    It's not symbolic....it would require that all govt and otherwise official business be done in one language. Which, by the way, would also make this thread moot.
    ”People willing to trade their freedom for temporary security deserve neither and will lose both.” --- Ben Franklin

    Quote Originally Posted by The German View Post
    Sterotypes are mostly based on truths.

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    Re: “Why Aren’t You Speaking English?”

    Quote Originally Posted by mac View Post
    It's not symbolic....it would require that all govt and otherwise official business be done in one language. Which, by the way, would also make this thread moot.
    It's more symbolic than anything since making all government business in English wouldn't significantly affect the population. The same patterns of learning English would exist in the United States. It would not significantly affect any aspect of the United States.

    edit: i also don't know that it would make this thread moot since it was ultimately conducted it English

  6. #426
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    Re: “Why Aren’t You Speaking English?”

    Quote Originally Posted by MistressNomad View Post
    I gotta disagree, playdrive.

    I won't even go to foreign countries as a TOURIST if I don't speak at least a little of their language. It's rude. I don't go to other people's countries and tell them to speak my language. And if I did, the people of that country would be justified in calling me rude - in their native tongue, at that.

    Belgium has 3 official languages, and I learned a bit of all of them before I went just to be safe. I didn't learn a ton, but enough that I could get around, ask for food, help, directions, etc, and at least show them I was trying. And I wasn't even living there - I was just passing through. It's courtesy.

    And just to be clear, I am not a language guru. I'm actually terrible at learning new languages, and I've forgotten everything I learned except a bit of German, since it's the most similar to English. But I made the effort, because I try to be polite.

    To me, it's even the same of different versions of English. When I was working in New Zealand, I wrote my CV using THEIR spellings and replacement words ("flat" instead of "apartment" and the like). Because I'm in THEIR country. And while it may be spelled "color" where I'm from, it's "colour" in New Zealand and the American spelling is wrong. If I'm going to live in their country and ask their employers to hire me, I am not going to expect them to make exceptions for me. They were nice enough to let me live in their country.

    And while it may be true we don't legally have an "official" language, everyone knows we speak English. Japan doesn't have an "official" language either, but don't try to tell me you'd go to Japan and expect them to speak English, or Spanish for that matter. My grandmother moved to this country as an adult, and while her English may not be great, she did learn it, because she is living in an English-speaking country.

    Speak whatever language you want to your friends and family. But if you want to function in our society, yeah, you have to speak English. What's so terrible about that?
    You said you learned a little bit of the three languages of Belgium.

    What if you were arrested for a crime you didn't commit while you were there? Would you feel comfortable speaking Flemish (or French, or Dutch) - or would you prefer a translator?

    There is a difference between knowing enough to get by and testifying before congress or testifying to save your hide.

  7. #427
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    Re: “Why Aren’t You Speaking English?”

    Quote Originally Posted by theplaydrive View Post
    It's more symbolic than anything since making all government business in English wouldn't significantly affect the population. The same patterns of learning English would exist in the United States. It would not significantly affect any aspect of the United States.
    Not at the moment, but when 50% of the population is speaking Spanish.....it may become an issue. One that could be avoided.

    edit: i also don't know that it would make this thread moot since it was ultimately conducted it English
    Sure, because the stunt that started this thread wouldn't have happened.
    ”People willing to trade their freedom for temporary security deserve neither and will lose both.” --- Ben Franklin

    Quote Originally Posted by The German View Post
    Sterotypes are mostly based on truths.

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    Re: “Why Aren’t You Speaking English?”

    Quote Originally Posted by mac View Post
    Not at the moment, but when 50% of the population is speaking Spanish.....it may become an issue. One that could be avoided.
    I don't think anything like that would ever happen since 2nd generations always learn English because English is the language of money and popular culture.

    Sure, because the stunt that started this thread wouldn't have happened.
    I think it depends on the laws because having an English translator still means it's conducted in English just like having an English translator for a deaf speaker would keep it in English.

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    Re: “Why Aren’t You Speaking English?”

    Quote Originally Posted by theplaydrive View Post
    I don't think anything like that would ever happen since 2nd generations always learn English because English is the language of money and popular culture.
    They do now and have historically. Mostly due to lack of accommodation of other languages. Why would that continue if there were no need to learn English?

    I think it depends on the laws because having an English translator still means it's conducted in English just like having an English translator for a deaf speaker would keep it in English.
    Who does this serve? To become a citizen one must demonstrate working knowledge of English.....so, allowing testimony and such in govt proceedings benefits whom?
    ”People willing to trade their freedom for temporary security deserve neither and will lose both.” --- Ben Franklin

    Quote Originally Posted by The German View Post
    Sterotypes are mostly based on truths.

  10. #430
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    Re: “Why Aren’t You Speaking English?”

    Quote Originally Posted by mac View Post
    They do now and have historically. Mostly due to lack of accommodation of other languages. Why would that continue if there were no need to learn English?
    Nearly all Hispanic adults born in the United States of immigrant parents report they are fluent in English. By contrast, only a small minority of their parents describe themselves as skilled English speakers. However, fully 88% of their U.S.-born adult children report that they speak English very well. Among later generations of Hispanic adults, the figure rises to 94%. Reading ability in English shows a similar trend.

    As fluency in English increases across generations, so, too, does the regular use of English by Hispanics, both at home and at work. For most immigrants, English is not the primary language they use in either setting. But for their grown children, it is.

    English Usage among Hispanics in the United States - Pew Research Center
    We don't have anything worry about.

    Who does this serve? To become a citizen one must demonstrate working knowledge of English.....so, allowing testimony and such in govt proceedings benefits whom?
    It benefits people who feel more comfortable speaking their first language - who still have a working knowledge of English.

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