I’ve heard from my friends who are teachers that they’re beginning to teach Spanish to kids at a very young age. I guess I believed it, but it didn’t really hit me until I voted yesterday in an elementary school and I saw the reality of it. Everything written on the walls - captions for photographs, posters, etc - had a Spanish translation. And I live in a very white, non-hispanic area.
A Norwegian friend of mine recently asked me, “what do you call someone who speaks one language? American”. Well, I think that pretty soon the butt end of that joke will be “Kiwi” or “Aussie”, because in a generation or less this country will be completely bilingual. Personally, I think it’s cool.
I can’t help but laugh when I read or hear of people demanding that we pass laws requiring everyone in America to learn and use a language that originated in Europe as if it was native to this country.
No doubt, before this thread ends there will be someone referring to our founding fathers…without realizing how they all spoke, wrote and read French as well as English, since French was the more common language of the world in that day. Jefferson, Adams and Franklin spent the majority of their time during the war in Paris soliciting loans, military support and ultimately a peace treaty. Being as how both countries were at war with England…I really doubt that they exchanged much conversation in the language of their enemy.
Here…got another for ya…I went to Germany in 89…my first week was in a class room learning conversational German…and then 1 week for driving test. Not that it was bad…actually it was pretty fun…but I was in a diff country…I was pissed when my kid had to learn spanish and was rated with the kids in class which was 75 percent spanish and already knew the language…I dont get that.
I think knowing multiple languages gives one an advantage, however I also believe that you should know the language of the country that you want to live in not the other way around.we have many different nationalities in the US what makes spanish more important than any of the others.
From a practical aspect, it would only make sense to learn the language of the people around you if you plan to live, work and succeed in that culture. In that respect, I agree. But to fear that the introduction of an additional language to the system as a signal of the demise of our culture is inconsistent with history as well as a sign of acute paranoia, IMO.
Besides, Rob…have you ever read through the posts of some of these “English, only” advocates? Their second grade teachers are probably rolling in their graves.
Yes, it is frustrating when immigrants refuse to learn English, as our ancestors came here and learned the language quickly. But IMO, the children of this recent wave of immigrants will learn English even if their parents don’t. And with Spanish being taught at such a young age nowadays to English-speaking kids, we will have a bilingual country in no time at all. There’s nothing to worry about.