View Poll Results: Should English be declared the official language of the United States?

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  • Yes

    61 54.46%
  • Yes, but with provisions to protect rights of non-English speakers

    17 15.18%
  • No

    31 27.68%
  • Unsure/Undecided

    3 2.68%
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Thread: Should English be declared the official language of the United States?

  1. #231
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    Re: Should English be declared the official language of the United States?

    No, we don't need one official language. A country can have many official languages... South Africa has 17. If anybody supports making an official language in this country, you better add all the Native American languages to the list.

    How ignorant and culturally arrogant of those 51 voters to ignore the actual languages here before English arrived.

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    Re: Should English be declared the official language of the United States?

    Quote Originally Posted by Redress View Post
    I see no real gain from doing so.
    I don't either... To me, it's just a statement that says, "This country is belongs to us more than you."

    I was just having this conversation with somebody from Puerto Rico, and you know, he is American. It seems like rest of Americans have something against studying foreign languages, which is a common international stereotype. Americans are perceived as being rude and ignorant for going into foreign countries and refusing to learn the local language. I also happen to think it's ignorant to shun learning a foreign language...

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    Re: Should English be declared the official language of the United States?

    Quote Originally Posted by SheWolf View Post
    No, we don't need one official language. A country can have many official languages... South Africa has 17. If anybody supports making an official language in this country, you better add all the Native American languages to the list.

    How ignorant and culturally arrogant of those 51 voters to ignore the actual languages here before English arrived.
    Idealism is nice, but I tend to prefer reality, and the reality is that those languages aren't spoken anymore.
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    Re: Should English be declared the official language of the United States?

    Quote Originally Posted by SheWolf View Post
    I don't either... To me, it's just a statement that says, "This country is belongs to us more than you."

    I was just having this conversation with somebody from Puerto Rico, and you know, he is American. It seems like rest of Americans have something against studying foreign languages, which is a common international stereotype. Americans are perceived as being rude and ignorant for going into foreign countries and refusing to learn the local language. I also happen to think it's ignorant to shun learning a foreign language...
    Oh, I agree. If you go to a foreign country, you have a responsibility to learn the language there. Demanding that other people speak your language is just arrogant.
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    Re: Should English be declared the official language of the United States?

    Quote Originally Posted by Temporal View Post
    I voted no. If you forced millions of immigrants to learn English, they would certainly learn it, but they would not have a high proficiency level. That takes years of wilful practice. In the mean time, having concise info available in their mother tongue keeps things less complicated and reduces errors.

    Our ancestors who helped form this country came from all over. The people who built our cities were mainly immigrants. Maintaining flexibility is what allowed all that to happen.

    An American who can't speak English is still an American.
    I don't care if they can't speak English either... There are so many communities in this country where people speak their native languages... like Chinatown. It was that way when people came from Europe before. Some of my family used to live in Cicero and it was mostly slavic immigrants, slavic restaurants, and slavic languages. Now it's all mostly Spanish speaking people and Mexican restaurants... The slavic family's from few years ago have grown kids and grandkids who are speaking English. The first wave of immigrants usually don't speak fluent English, never did.

    This is just another way to make it HARDER for people to become legal citizens and legal residents and do it the right way.

  6. #236
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    Re: Should English be declared the official language of the United States?

    Quote Originally Posted by atrasicarius View Post
    Oh, I agree. If you go to a foreign country, you have a responsibility to learn the language there. Demanding that other people speak your language is just arrogant.
    Doesn't really work that way. Historically, the children of immigrants learned the language. Now, no one should oppsoe children learning as many languages as possible. It is better to learn more than less, overall.

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    Re: Should English be declared the official language of the United States?

    Quote Originally Posted by atrasicarius View Post
    Idealism is nice, but I tend to prefer reality, and the reality is that those languages aren't spoken anymore.
    People do speak those languages still, although many of those languages are dying... preserving them is part of preserving a culture that wouldn't be dying if American settlers had respect it's the people in the first place. Not recognizing those languages is disrespectful IMO. Even the UK shows respect for it's minority and dying languages like Welsh, and you'll find signs displaying the language in some areas.

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    Re: Should English be declared the official language of the United States?

    Quote Originally Posted by Boo Radley View Post
    Doesn't really work that way. Historically, the children of immigrants learned the language. Now, no one should oppsoe children learning as many languages as possible. It is better to learn more than less, overall.
    You just contradicted yourself. You said that Americans are perceived as being arrogant for demanding that everyone else speak our language, but then you said that we should make accommodations for everyone who comes here and doesn't speak our language. You can't have it both ways.
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    Re: Should English be declared the official language of the United States?

    Quote Originally Posted by atrasicarius View Post
    You just contradicted yourself. You said that Americans are perceived as being arrogant for demanding that everyone else speak our language, but then you said that we should make accommodations for everyone who comes here and doesn't speak our language. You can't have it both ways.
    Everyone in this country ought to be required to be functionally literate in our language, just like they expect in every other country on the planet. If you go to France, they expect you to speak French. If you go to Mexico, they expect you to speak Spanish. No one is saying people cannot also speak other languages, just that they need to be conversant in the language of the land. We should not make accomodations for anyone who refuses to do so.
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    Re: Should English be declared the official language of the United States?

    Quote Originally Posted by atrasicarius View Post
    You just contradicted yourself. You said that Americans are perceived as being arrogant for demanding that everyone else speak our language, but then you said that we should make accommodations for everyone who comes here and doesn't speak our language. You can't have it both ways.
    That's not at all what I said. I said historically, people come here not speaking the language, and it is their children who learn. This is true. Then I said, as it is a sound idea, no one should object to children learning different languages. And there is not one single thing contradictory in that.

    As for accomadations, you can't stop that. You can't write a law that forbids business from making accomidations. Iowans made English the offical language and some are still upset that companies continue to print things in Spanish. Not to mention that government still has to content with people who don't speak English, so they still have to accomodate. The law, which cost more than a few bucks, accomplished nothing. And those who don't want to hear another langauge spoken still have to.

    AUSTAN GOOLSBEE: I think the world vests too much power, certainly in the president, probably in Washington in general for its influence on the economy, because most all of the economy has nothing to do with the government.

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