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Old 05-15-2005, 03:17 PM   #46
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point taken. i just think it's important to remember the history, and to remember not to get too bogged down in a sense of entitlement in this debate.
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Old 05-15-2005, 03:50 PM   #47
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Americans would be totally lost in other countries if their signs and their people didn't cater to us in English. We just take it flat out for granted whenever we are in other countries that they will accomodate us. I notice that many of us expect that accomodation when we travel. Someone made the point earlier that Americans are rarely required to learn a second language to survive and many of us would probably throw a royal fit if we did.

I agree that once someone decides to make their home in the United States, he/she should attempt to learn the language as a gesture of respect to their new country and not feel that they are entitled to complete accomodation. Some people can feel that sense of entitlement an insult to the country they have adopted, and perhaps there is some justification in that. I would not feel any country I moved to would have to adapt to me, but that I would have to adapt to it.

But Hispanics are accomodated here due to sheer numbers and commerce reasons. They know their power.
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Old 05-15-2005, 03:57 PM   #48
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Wow. Very interesting topic. For myself living in southern Cali yes Spanish is everywhere. I came from parents who immigrated from Mexico. Us kids learned English at school. There was no ESL or spanish/english classes back then. You were just put in school and taught english. That's how we all learned the language.

You cannot generalize and say that all kids or people either are not or will not learn the language. Yes some people abuse the system and thus don't feel that learning english is essential. But to those that want a better life for there family they learn English. It just sucks that a few bad apples destroys what others think of this topic.
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Old 05-15-2005, 04:27 PM   #49
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http://www.workings.com/LIA_EOL.htm

On Aug. 1, 1996, the House of Representatives voted 259-169 to declare English the official language of the United States; the Senate never acted on the bill. Source: Cong. Rec. Aug. 1, 1996, H9771-72.


i wonder why the senate never acted on the bill...anyone know?
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Old 05-15-2005, 04:32 PM   #50
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I suspect the Senate considered it a purely political move by the relatively new Republican majority in the House. More symbol than substance.
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Old 05-15-2005, 07:38 PM   #51
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Originally posted by BonosSaint
I suspect the Senate considered it a purely political move by the relatively new Republican majority in the House. More symbol than substance.
I suspect that's what happened, too. I know for a fact that's what happened when some conservatives in my state (Iowa) tried to get English declared the official language of the state. The majority of the people in the state legislature saw if for what it was - political grandstanding and pandering to the anti-immigration crowd.
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Old 05-15-2005, 07:49 PM   #52
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Re: "No Hablo Espanol and NEVER WILL!"

Quote:
Originally posted by MissVelvetDress_75
Those are the exact words displayed on a sign outside of a bar called "Mulligan's" in my city.
.
If you go out the back door there is a second sign, it reads:

"IF THE AMIGO HANGIN' IN THE TREE
SAYS HE AIN'T DEAD, DON'T BELIEVE HIM.
YOU KNOW THEY LIE."
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Old 05-15-2005, 07:56 PM   #53
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I remember going to Paris and Rome. When I was in Rome, I brought a phrase translation book, which came in handy when I was in a small Italian village where no one spoke english asking where the train station was. And in Paris, I had to recall my French from high school to order baguettes and know how much the person behind the counter asked for them. Americans travelling abroad are thought of as ugly Americans when they sit down at a cafe in Roma and expect their waiter to speak english. I spoke english with my friends but at least tried to speak the native language at times.

I think what this person may have been upset by, and the point some of you are trying to make, is that you should at least try to learn enough of the language when you live here to order "One beer" or "Coke" or whatever. Or perhaps the bar owner had a problem with an employee who didn't speak enough english to understand "Kegs go here.", which is something you should at least expect as an employer.

At the same time, I have no problem walking through Chinatown or the Russian neighborhood my fiance's grandmother lives in in Brooklyn and seeing store signs in other languages. That's what makes NYC great -- the different people and different native tongues on the subway. But at least be able to understand basic english if you needed it.

I do agree though that the sign is tacky and perhaps you should write a letter to the owner. My friend went to a coffee shop on a Sunday morning that was closed with a sign that said "We are closed on Sunday as God intended." Not everyone believes the Sabbath is Sunday and not everyone believes that you shouldn't work on whatever Sabbath you believe in. My friend sent a note, the sign was removed and he received a note of apology from the owner.
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Old 05-15-2005, 08:01 PM   #54
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If your friend wont accept Jesus christ as her lord and saviour she may spend the rest of eternity shopping at Walmant Hell with no checkout lines.
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Old 05-15-2005, 08:03 PM   #55
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It's in towns like these where they can't teach evolution........ because it hasn't happened yet.

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Old 05-15-2005, 08:04 PM   #56
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Quote:
Originally posted by unosdostres14
It's in towns like these where they can't teach evolution........ because it hasn't happened yet.

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Old 05-15-2005, 08:52 PM   #57
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Originally posted by deep
If your friend wont accept Jesus christ as her lord and saviour she may spend the rest of eternity shopping at Walmant Hell with no checkout lines.
Hee hee...first, it's a him. and second, he's Jewish -- just like Jesus! -- so we should give him a little slack.

Now if he was Muslim, they should pat him down to check for dirty bombs before he could enter the coffee house.
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Old 05-15-2005, 08:52 PM   #58
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Originally posted by AvsGirl41




I also have a problem with the selective nature of which immigrants have to learn English, and which don't. In Denver, we have a large Spanish community and the city accordingly prints almost everything in both languages, and encourages everyone to learn Spanish.

But we also have an extremely large Russian and Asian population--but nothing is printed in Russian, Vietnamese or Japanese. No one is encouraged to learn those languages--your lucky if you can find a Russian language class. Why is it that if you come here from Mexico or South America, you get a pass, but not if you come from Europe or Asia?

My Polish friend still struggles with English after 20 years in this country--if he hadn't learned English, he wouldn't have been able to get his degree, or get a job here. No one ever offered him a Polish interpreter. Yet just yesterday, I'm berated by a Spanish guy who can't understand me, yet we handed him a college degree.

I'm a big believer in keeping your language and culture alive, but the hypocrisy of the language barrier angers me.
I agree with you. No other ethnic group that has immigrated to the US in its history has demanded we speak their language to accomodate them rather than it being the other way around. Can you image what what a "Tower of Babel" mess we'd have if that had occured? I don't think they guy who owns the bar necessarily has anything against Hispanics, only the way their language is being forced on the American mainstream.

Like Avs, I am all for immigrants preserving their culture, but at home, not in the society of another country. This goes for every immigrant in every country, not just Hispanics in America.
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Old 05-15-2005, 08:59 PM   #59
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Originally posted by Moonlit_Angel

And I do think that if they're going to take the time to learn English, we should try and learn at the very least the basics of theirs.
Angela
Would you-could you do this for every immigrant? In many places there are immigrants who bring literally dozens of languages into the mix. Is it fair to the French, German, Russian, Vietnamese, Chinese, Indians, etc. to only coddle the Spanish speakers? Since we simply can't accomodate them all, and it's not fair to pick and choose, it is actually more convenient for society as a whole for the immigrants to learn the language of their new country other than vice versa. If you enjoy learning new languages, that's great, but it shouldn't become a necessity because of immigrants in any country.
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Old 05-15-2005, 09:48 PM   #60
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Some comments:

Whatever happened to tolerance?

That sign appears to incite people to extreme view points. Would we even be discussing this if it had said "When ordering/speaking to the employees of this bar please speak English as our Spanish is only basic"?

If I was living in another country where English was not the first language and I had to sort out something like insurance I think I would be asking for an interpreter, if only to make sure I understood what I was signing.

How many versions of English are there? Let's face it, sometimes we have trouble understanding what each other are saying here where each answer is written down. Imagine what it is like for a 40+ person, trying to learn English and get all the nuances of the country they are living in and try and have a conversation at the same time?
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