Saturday, April 29, 2006

They hate us for our freedom- English only version

I've long considered the "English only" advocates to be so obviously opposed to civil liberties, and therefore unworthy of consideration that it amazes me that it wasn't pointed out, and therefore is an indication that our media is less than liberal.

So it doesn't surprise me that George W. Bush gives them a wink and a nod.

Look, we have laws in this country that say "Congress shall make no law abridging freedom of speech." Like it or not, that is why you'll never have "an" official language of the United States. Like it or not, you can require immmigrants to stand on their heads and spit wooden nickels for all the good it will do you, but you can never force naturalized citizens to use and remember every scrap of English they learned.

As any serious student of languages knows there are things you can say in languages that you just can't say in English. To restrict the use of English in America means restricting what is said and how it is said.

If I want to talk about you to somebody else in your prescence, it's my right to use Japanese if you haven't learned it. (This comes in very handy.) And I don't know Spanish, and therefore I accept somebody's right to do this to me, in Spanish. It may be perceived as rude, it might get you fired in certain work situations, but it clearly is a violation of civil liberties for the state to create sanctions against the use of foreign languages.


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