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Thread: Learn english first

  1. #131
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    Re: Learn english first

    Quote Originally Posted by specklebang View Post
    I hope that by now you read my subsequent posts and that you realize I backed off my original position because I'm here to learn and be corrected as much or more than to drop off opinions and run for cover.

    But when I wrote the original post, the one you are reacting to, my dismay was that I felt the children were being diminished in opportunity because the parents were failing to prepare them to become effective in their primary language of the land and thus condemning them to a lower set of opportunities. I've noticed that Asians tend to speak English to their children and Asians seem to be the most successful group of New Americans. From this, I extrapolated an opinion that was apparently incorrect and I have no problem admitting that I am wrong.

    Sorry for this one last push at anecdotal evidence but my son was born in Korea to my (then) Korean wife. Because I was an absent Father, working, working, working to get my export business going, I rarely spoke to my child (I am ashamed of this and have apologized to him and supported him fully through his adult career because I screwed up and I know it). Well, when we returned to America when he was 5, we had to spend thousands of dollars sending him to speech therapy because his early use of Korean had shaped his mouth and had made certain words/sounds hard for him to pronounce. So, I was under the impression that it was harmful to maintain another language as a child. Apparently, my personal experience was somewhat unique and most children become readily bi-lingual without these speech problems. Good. I'd rather be wrong than right about this.
    They can become bilingual. The Russian families that I've observed, the kids easily switch between Russian and English. If they are exposed to both on a regular basis, they will keep it. My kids were born in Russia and came here (ages 7 & 6) not knowing any English. Now they don't really speak Russian anymore, even to each other, because my ex wife and I are native English speakers (learned a little Russian, but I'm obviously way more comfortable in English). I don't know that my Grandmother could still really speak Polish at the end of her life. My Grandfather wasn't Polish and they were married for over 65 years. Especially after her father died, there wasn't much use for Polish the last 40 years of her life.


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  2. #132
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    Re: Learn english first

    If it's more entry-level work that these immigrants are hired for, and they are often from the same background, hire a bilingual manager and the company would likely do better overall.

  3. #133
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    Re: Learn english first

    Quote Originally Posted by RabidAlpaca View Post
    This is completely incorrect. There are no states in the US where you "need to learn two languages". I grew up in Texas, one of the states with the most Spanish speakers, and I at no point in my entire life have ever needed Spanish. It is not the language of the US, nor is it a requirement. Some people try to get cute and say "Well, officially the US has no language". And to that I say "Bull****."

    Our constitution and laws are written in English, our police officers all speak English, we are an English speaking country. I'm an immigrant myself, but I learned my host nation's language and don't act like a lazy immigrant expecting them to learn mine.

    It's lazy, disrespectful, and frankly a little dangerous when immigrants come en masse and refuse to even make an attempt to learn English.
    As far as I am aware, there is only one State which is officially Bilingual, that is New Mexico.
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  4. #134
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    Re: Learn english first

    Quote Originally Posted by RabidAlpaca View Post
    Many people don't try, plain and simple. Mastering a language is VERY hard, but learning the basic syntax with a basic vocabulary is quite easy and can be done very quickly.
    And it is even worse if these people are ghettoized.

    I first met my wife just over 2 years after she moved to the US. Her accent was pretty bad, but she mad an honest effort, and you could tell as months then years went by that she is now very fluent in English.

    Yet I have met people who have been here for decades (her parents among them) who never bothered to learn English at all. This is easier in a place like LA, where you have Spanish newspapers, radio, and television. But even when my mother-in-law lived with us in North Carolina and there was none of that at all, she still refused to learn English.

    My wife already had her High School diploma when she moved to the US, but purposefully attended US High School because she knew it would improve her English. And even then she could not understand why people who were born and/or raised here did not bother to even try.
    War is an ugly thing, but not the ugliest of things. The decayed and degraded state of moral and patriotic feeling which thinks that nothing is worth war is much worse. - John Stuart Mill

  5. #135
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    Re: Learn english first

    Quote Originally Posted by Phil_Osophy View Post
    So.... i have a question. Should employers have the right to refuse employment because someone cant speak english?

    Disclaimer: this is not about any specific "race" or language. Just about legal immigrants who cant speak english.

    What do you think?
    And how do you propose to determine a person knows English or not? And what are the criteria of knowledge? Shakespeare by heart or the "street English" by teens, consisting of 150 words and 150 curses?

  6. #136
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    Re: Learn english first

    Update: two new somali workers started today on my team. Their english is very decent. Looks like i got some translators

  7. #137
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    Re: Learn english first

    Quote Originally Posted by radcen View Post
    I have heard people from other countries say that English is one of the harder languages to learn. Primarily because our grammar rules are inconsistent compared to most other languages.
    Our grammar rules are more vague guidelines...

    Seriously though, the English language IS one of the most convoluted on the planet - when it comes to following rules, we don't.

    This is possibly in part because we gleefully take words from any language if they strike our fancy, and for that matter, make up new words out of thin air.


    Edit: Hell, English is my native language, and I probably only know 75% at most of the words/rules.
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    Re: Learn english first

    The worst is when they put those people public facing. Whenever I encounter that I halt the business conversation, ask for management and explain why I'll never do business with the company again.

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    Re: Learn english first

    It should depend on the nature of the job, based on whether communicating in English is essential or not.

  10. #140
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    Re: Learn english first

    Quote Originally Posted by Phil_Osophy View Post
    So.... i have a question. Should employers have the right to refuse employment because someone cant speak english?

    Disclaimer: this is not about any specific "race" or language. Just about legal immigrants who cant speak english.

    So, at work today i got really frustrated trying to communicate with someone who didnt speak very much english. Only a tiny bit. Not nearly enough to hold a conversation.
    Im a leader in the workplace, so from time to time i have to ask someone to do something or for information. Its really hard to communicate with a person who cant speak english. I asked this person to not throw out the damaged products of the particular job we were doing because i have to keep count and record of them. This person didnt have a clue what i was asking and continued to throw out the damaged products.

    Long story short, it made my job a lot harder and a thought hit my head; why are people who cant speak english even hired in the first place? How did this person make it through the process and interview with such little grasp on the language?

    I think that employers should be allowed to deny employment to those who cant speak english. Im not saying they shouldnt be allowed to hire them, but i think they deserve a choice in this matter. What do you think?
    I know I'm in late . . . but that's what happens when I do stuff other than DP.

    Yes - I feel that management is just inviting trouble when they hire people who *CANNOT communicate clearly* - and that even includes some 'Native English' speaking individuals who are just poor communicators.

    How can work get done - and get done right - if people cannot so much as talk to each other? It's asinine to expect you to hobble together our own pidgin language.
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