[lg policy] Edling Digest, Vol 7, Issue 19

Harold Schiffman hfsclpp at GMAIL.COM
Fri Feb 15 16:07:54 UTC 2013


Forwarded From:  The Educational Linguistics List <edling at bunner.geol.lu.se>


Dear Peter,

I am still optimistic. "Linguistic imperialism" genes can only make
all of us pessimistic about the future of Spanish as an official
language of the US next to English (Philpson, 2009:2). May be we need
another Martin Luther King Jr's dream to help us contend that with the
changing demographic and many other social realities, one can yet be
positive that the day of the cohabitation of English and Spanish as
official languages of the US will arrive. That is, one day, a language
policy expert within the federal government will, may be by 2050 or
later,  just do what President Obama has done with the Affordable
Health Care Act in this country. In addition, he or she may also ask
as President Obama asked in his second term Union Address regarding
the "Gun Control Issue" that Spanish and English, English-Only, or No
policy  - deserve a vote. All in all, I disagree with any argument
regarding the future of these two super global languages on the ground
of "the history" of imperialistic language policy ( Baron, 1990). It
may sound naive, but I think there are solid evidence of these
happening one day. It will  just take one expert to stop the madness
of any "Lingua Tyrannosaura" (Philpson, 2009: 2 quoting Swales 1997,
Ammon 2001, and Philpson 2002).

About the English monolingual fear of Spanish whether or not it is on
the linguistic level, I share the perception of Robert Lane Greene
mentioned in its book You are what you speak: Grammar grouches,
language laws, and the politics of identy: "What we hear about
language is often really about the politics of identity"(Greene, 2011:
2). It should be an interesting debate over whether or not we can
separate people and their linguistic identity.

References
Baron, D. (1990). The English -Only question: An official language for American?
Greene, R. L. (2011). You are what you speak: Grammar grouches,
language laws, and the politics of identy. New York: Delacorte Press.
Philklipson, R. ( 2009). Linguistic imperialism continued. New York: Routledge.

Saludos,

David

.


On Thu, Feb 14, 2013 at 12:36 PM, Peter Sayer <peter.sayer at utsa.edu> wrote:
>
> I agree with you David that English monolingual speakers in the U.S. do sometimes fear Spanish speakers, but I don't think it's exactly for linguistic reasons.  However, I'm not as optimistic that bi-/multilingualism will necessarily win out as the future of the U.S.
>
>
>
> One case in point is the announcement this Monday 2/11 that the U.S. Spanish-language station Univision is teaming with ABC to create an English-medium channel aimed at Latinos.  See NYTimes: http://mediadecoder.blogs.nytimes.com/2013/02/11/univision-and-abc-news-give-details-of-cable-channel-aimed-at-latinos/.  This indicates that they think there is a market of Latinos who prefer English over Spanish, and as the article states they see Univision as their grandmother's channel.  If kids, even Spanish-dominant kids, are tuning in to Nick Jr instead of Plaza S├ęsamo, that doesn't bode well for the long-term future of Spanish, especially if net immigration from Mexico and Latin American continues to be zero.  It also clearly contradicts one of the earlier comments on this thread about the "fact" of Latinos not wanting to learn English.  They're very clearly learning it, and often at the expensive of Spanish.  The erosion of bilingual education in the last decade both reflects!
  and contributes to the problem of Spanish language maintenance for 2+ generation Latino families.
>
>
>
> - peter.-
>
> San Antonio, Texas
>
>
>
> ________________________________
>
> From: edling-bounces at bunner.geol.lu.se [edling-bounces at bunner.geol.lu.se] on behalf of David Balosa [dbalosa1 at umbc.edu]
> Sent: Wednesday, February 13, 2013 6:16 AM
>
> To: The Educational Linguistics List
> Subject: Re: [Edling] Edling Digest, Vol 7, Issue 19
>
> Hi Harold,
>
> Thanks for this clarification - English requirement for naturalization within Immigration law of the US has been there since 19 century. Don't you think that including English within the 4 requirements president Obama will sign  as the federal law leave the issue open to multiple interpretation? If "time has  come to fix the broken immigration policy", should scholars and politicians remain pessimistic to language policy that reflect the social reality and demographic change of our time?
>
> Another point I would like to address is Harold mentioned "for those who fear about the future of Spanish" I think that  American- monolingual English speakers should fear more than the Spanish speakers. It is my personal opinion I don't have enough data to support this argument. English monolingual American is becoming minority. MSNBC republican analyst (Morning Joe show) once mentioned that every single day thousands of American-born Spanish speakers are turning 18 years old. In addition, the fact that  the Republican Party has started giving in to Spanish speaking electoral power, I don't think that any one has the fear about the future of Spanish  grounding that fear on the experience of German, Italian, French, Russian , etc. past in the US. Any time the electoral and purchase power shift, I think there should be public policies such as language policy) that reflect the shift.
>
> What do you think?
>
> Key terms: future, economy, electoral and purchase power, political momentum, fear for Spanish future
>
> On Mon, Feb 11, 2013 at 11:39 AM, Harold Schiffman <hfsclpp at gmail.com> wrote:
>>
>> Regarding Raquel Sanchez's claim that there were many monolingual
>> German speakers in the US prior to WWI, I would dispute this.  My research
>> (mentioned in an earlier post several days ago) indicates that German Americans
>> were switching to English within 2 generations, and that the demand for English
>> medium education and English medium religious services began to accelerate
>> at about the time that German immigration peaked in 1882.  My own
>> mother's parents (one born in Germany and immigrated at the age of 8,
>> the other born
>> in the US of German-born parents) were both educated in English medium,
>> and though their home language was German until WWI, they both saw English
>> as the language of opportunity.  My mother spoke German only until the age of
>> 6, then learned English at school.
>>
>> As for the other question of whether there should be a requirement of
>> English knowledge for naturalization, it's already there--it became a
>> requirement in the
>> 19th century in immigration law, but was never imposed by the federal
>> government. There's an exemption for people over 60, I believe, and
>> for very young children.
>>
>> Hal Schiffman
>>
>> On Fri, Feb 8, 2013 at 12:37 PM,  <edling-request at bunner.geol.lu.se> wrote:
>> > Send Edling mailing list submissions to
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>> > than "Re: Contents of Edling digest..."
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>> >
>> > Today's Topics:
>> >
>> >    1. Re: Political Economy of Culture: Where Should President
>> >       Obama Start: By Designing a Consistent language policy or on
>> >       Imposing English Language as a Requirement to the Path of U.S.
>> >       Citizenship? (Raquel Sanchez)
>> >
>> >
>> > ----------------------------------------------------------------------
>> >
>> > Message: 1
>> > Date: Fri, 8 Feb 2013 09:14:28 -0800
>> > From: Raquel Sanchez <raqsan at gmail.com>
>> > Subject: Re: [Edling] Political Economy of Culture: Where Should
>> >         President Obama Start: By Designing a Consistent language policy or on
>> >         Imposing English Language as a Requirement to the Path of U.S.
>> >         Citizenship?
>> > To: The Educational Linguistics List <edling at bunner.geol.lu.se>
>> > Message-ID:
>> >         <CAOT76=06Rix07znZZWqp_7e6k2+2WMMt3siDvRNBYZQXE_feaQ at mail.gmail.com>
>> > Content-Type: text/plain; charset="windows-1252"
>> >
>> > I think Bob is referring to societal bilingualism (not individual).
>> > I believe there were many monolingual German speakers in the U.S. prior to
>> > WWI (not just in Missouri, but also in Pennsylvania and other states).
>> > The point is that ideas can be translated into any language.  It is common
>> > ways of thinking that unit people, not a common language.
>> > In a multilingual society, as long as there are several bilingual
>> > individuals (not necessarily in the same languages), translation and civic
>> > engagement can occur.  I believe it is more important for people to be
>> > literate in at least one language than it is to mandate what language that
>> > should be.
>> > In the U.S., basic literacy and numeracy (in any language) are more real
>> > problems than "whose language".
>> >
>> >
>> > On Fri, Feb 8, 2013 at 12:18 AM, Hartmut Haberland <hartmut at ruc.dk> wrote:
>> >
>> >> As much as I sympathize with the point that Bob makes, I'd like to point
>> >> out that he talks about bilingualism, so there was a shared language. I
>> >> wonder how many of the Missouri German speakers were monolingual at any
>> >> time.
>> >> I am not trying to argue that one shared language is a necessary condition
>> >> for a civic identity. It is certainly not a sufficient condition. Didn't
>> >> somebody once point out that Northern Ireland, Rwanda and Somalia are among
>> >> the most homogeneous areas in the world language-wise?
>> >>
>> >> Hartmut Haberland
>> >> Professor, German language and sociolinguistics of globalization
>> >> Roskilde University, Denmark
>> >> ________________________________________
>> >> Fra: edling-bounces at bunner.geol.lu.se [edling-bounces at bunner.geol.lu.se]
>> >> på vegne af kaboyates at charter.net [kaboyates at charter.net]
>> >> Sendt: 7. februar 2013 20:05
>> >> Til: The Educational Linguistics List
>> >> Emne: Re: [Edling] Political Economy of Culture: Where Should President
>> >> Obama Start: By Designing a Consistent language policy or on Imposing
>> >> English Language as a Requirement to the Path of U.S. Citizenship?
>> >>
>> >> Colleagues,
>> >>
>> >> If you reflect on American history, Christian Faltis's point that "a
>> >> national language unifies" is a debatable point is clearly supported.
>> >> Of course, English did not prevent the Civil War. And, at the time of
>> >> the greatest crisis in American history, entire regiments, brigades,
>> >> divisions, and almost an entire corps spoke another language: German.
>> >> They did not fight to PRESERVE the Union because English was unifying
>> >> factor.
>> >>
>> >> In Missouri, the German speakers were crucial in keeping it in the
>> >> Union.  After the Civil War, besides cities like Milwaukee and
>> >> Cincinnati (and at times St. Louis), there were communities in rural
>> >> parts of Ohio, Illinois, Wisconsin, and Missouri (and I'm sure other
>> >> states in the Midwest) that had public bilingual schools.  (I have
>> >> visited cemeteries in rural Missouri around Lutheran and Catholic
>> >> Churches where almost all the headstones from the 1870s to the early
>> >> 1920s are all in German.) I don't think those people were consider
>> >> unAmerican until the outbreak of WW I.  Of course, when the US entered
>> >> the Great War, that bilingualism ended almost overnight.
>> >>
>> >> There are some areas where I live in Missouri that try to celebrate
>> >> their bilingual past. There is a theater that puts on plays in a dialect
>> >> of German and a community that has people tell stories in German about
>> >> what it was like in that community during the Civil War.  Hermann,
>> >> Missouri is a tourist destination that celebrates its German past some
>> >> of the people will talk about the historic buildings in German.
>> >>
>> >> I often wonder if the ending of German-English bilingualism had not
>> >> happened and there were still some areas in the Midwest (beside some
>> >> small Amish and Mennonite communities) that still had bilingual programs
>> >> would we be so concerned about Spanish-bilingualism today.
>> >>
>> >> Bob Yates, University of Central Missouri
>> >>
>> >>
>> >> On Thu, Feb 7, 2013 at 9:41 AM, Christian Faltis wrote:
>> >>
>> >> > I have to agree completely with Tom on this. Once you start with the
>> >> > proposition that minority group doesn't want to learn the national
>> >> > language, the assumption is that a national language unifies, and
>> >> > there is much debate about that. Studying the history of the treatment
>> >> > of indigenous and other minoritized groups in the US will show that
>> >> > that the dominant groups will promote policies and practices that
>> >> > ensure their dominance. One strategy is to espouse the belief that
>> >> > certain minoritized groups don't want do belong, hence placing the
>> >> > blame on them.
>> >> >
>> >> >
>> >> > Chris Faltis
>> >> > Professor, language, literacy, and culture
>> >> > University of California, Davis
>> >> > Sent from my iPad
>> >> >
>> >> > On Feb 6, 2013, at 9:16 AM, Thomas Ricento <tricento at ucalgary.ca>
>> >> > wrote:
>> >> >
>> >> >> HI MYRNA,
>> >> >>
>> >> >>    Here are your exact words in your e mail:
>> >> >>
>> >> >>   "Fact is, historically, Hispanics are the only ethnic group
>> >> >> immigrating to the U.S. that has resisted learning English. I'm not
>> >> >> sure why this is so, but it might be a good basis for some research
>> >> >> if
>> >> >> it has not already been done or if it is not already in the works."
>> >> >>
>> >> >>   Your statement is categorical, whatever your intentions might have
>> >> >> been, and it is contradicted by evidence (if that matters).
>> >> >>
>> >> >>   There is a TON of research on this topic;  there ARE government
>> >> >> programs providing ESL classes for immigrants in the US (but not
>> >> >> nearly enough);  this IS a political history with a deep and
>> >> >> contentious history in the US, which I and many others have spent
>> >> >> many years studying and writing about.  If you are interested in
>> >> >> learning more, then there is a wealth of literature to read.  My
>> >> >> comment about Huntington and anti-immigrant zealots was not directed
>> >> >> to you personally;  rather, it was describing a political reality in
>> >> >> the U.S.  If you look at the latest poll numbers on how Obama is
>> >> >> graded on his position re. a path for citizenship for undocumented
>> >> >> Americans (mostly Latinos), Republican (white) conservative males are
>> >> >> the only group strongly opposed to his position on immigration
>> >> >> reform.
>> >> >>
>> >> >> Tom
>> >> >>
>> >> >>
>> >> >>
>> >> >> ________________________________________
>> >> >> From: edling-bounces at bunner.geol.lu.se
>> >> >> [edling-bounces at bunner.geol.lu.se] On Behalf Of Myrna Goldstein
>> >> >> [myrnaenglishfile at gmail.com]
>> >> >> Sent: Wednesday, February 06, 2013 8:18 AM
>> >> >> To: The Educational Linguistics List
>> >> >> Subject: Re: [Edling] Political Economy of Culture: Where Should
>> >> >> President       Obama Start: By Designing a Consistent language
>> >> >> policy or on    Imposing English Language as a Requirement to   the
>> >> >> Path of     U.S. Citizenship?
>> >> >>
>> >> >> HI TOM,
>> >> >>
>> >> >> You quoted me wrong.
>> >> >> And distorted what I wrote creating a fictitious context.
>> >> >>
>> >> >> I believe that stereotyping is so very negative and have
>> >> >> never done so in my life.
>> >> >>
>> >> >>
>> >> >> Myrna
>> >> >>
>> >> >>
>> >> >>
>> >> >> Myrna Goldstein, B.S.J., MATESL
>> >> >> Founder, Director
>> >> >> Are You in Your English File??
>> >> >> Second Language Learning Research Center
>> >> >> Eilat, Israel (formerly Milan, Italy)
>> >> >>
>> >> >> Member:
>> >> >> TESOL
>> >> >> Linguistic Society of America
>> >> >> American Association for Applied Linguistics
>> >> >>
>> >> >> e: myrnaenglishfile at gmail.com
>> >> >> Skype: myinmi
>> >> >> c:  ++972 053 525 5360
>> >> >>
>> >> >>
>> >> >>
>> >> >>
>> >> >>
>> >> >>
>> >> >> On Feb 4, 2013, at 11:37 PM, Thomas Ricento wrote:
>> >> >>
>> >> >> Hello,
>> >> >>
>> >> >>      Here is a brief snipet from a chapter I wrote to appear in R.
>> >> >> Bayley, et al. (editors), The Oxford Handbook of Sociolinguistics
>> >> >> (2013, p. 540):
>> >> >>
>> >> >> "Rumbaut, et al. (2006: 458), relying on data from two published
>> >> >> studies and a
>> >> >> survey they conducted themselves in Southern California during 2001?
>> >> >> 2004,
>> >> >> conclude that ?under current conditions . . . the ability to speak
>> >> >> Spanish very
>> >> >> well can be expected to disappear sometime between the second and
>> >> >> third
>> >> >> generation for all Latin American groups in Southern California.?
>> >> >> They
>> >> >> also
>> >> >> found that ?the average Asian language can be expected to die out at
>> >> >> or near
>> >> >> the second generation? (ibid). To account for such a wide discrepancy
>> >> >> between
>> >> >> the apparent facts and widely held misperceptions, it is necessary to
>> >> >> consider
>> >> >> the influence, and effects, of deeply held beliefs about language and
>> >> >> identity
>> >> >> that are resistant to contrary evidence".
>> >> >>
>> >> >> It is amazing that someone who has expertise in English language
>> >> >> teaching also succumbs to the stereotype that 'Latinos refuse to
>> >> >> learn
>> >> >> English'.  This
>> >> >> has been the battle cry of Huntington and others (mostly right wing,
>> >> >> anti-immigrant advocates) who categorize Latinos as refuseniks.  It's
>> >> >> just not true.  Maintaining Spanish (an American Language) alongside
>> >> >> English should be viewed as a positive outcome, even though, as
>> >> >> Rumbaut and his colleagues demonstrate, Spanish is being lost.  If
>> >> >> 'experts' make such claims as Myrna does, it shows that we as applied
>> >> >> linguists have a long way to go to educate the broader public.
>> >> >>
>> >> >> Tom Ricento
>> >> >> Professor and Chair, English as an Additional Language
>> >> >> Faculty of Education
>> >> >> University of Calgary
>> >> >> ________________________________________
>> >> >> From: edling-bounces at bunner.geol.lu.se [edling-
>> >> >> bounces at bunner.geol.lu.se] On Behalf Of Myrna Goldstein
>> >> >> [myrnaenglishfile at gmail.com
>> >> >> ]
>> >> >> Sent: Sunday, February 03, 2013 3:21 AM
>> >> >> To: The Educational Linguistics List
>> >> >> Subject: Re: [Edling] Political Economy of Culture: Where Should
>> >> >> President      Obama Start: By Designing a Consistent language policy
>> >> >> or on    Imposing English Language as a Requirement to the Path
>> >> >> of       U.S. Citizenship?
>> >> >>
>> >> >> Dear David,
>> >> >>
>> >> >> I read your piece with interest, trying to understand the
>> >> >> rationale behind it, beyond the numbers of the Hispanic
>> >> >> population. Fact is, historically, Hispanics are the only ethnic
>> >> >> group
>> >> >> immigrating to the U.S. that has resisted learning English. I'm not
>> >> >> sure why this is so, but it might be a good basis for some research
>> >> >> if
>> >> >> it has not already been done or if it is not already in the works.
>> >> >>
>> >> >> I'm not judging. I'm curious. In order to get decent jobs, immigrants
>> >> >> to any country in the world realize that they must learn the L1. If
>> >> >> they
>> >> >> don't, they will always remain in low-level jobs, be isolated from
>> >> >> society
>> >> >> at large, and will not be able to study at universities to let their
>> >> >> talents bloom.
>> >> >>
>> >> >> I'm not sure that legislation is the answer; this would have to be
>> >> >> studied.
>> >> >> But common sense is. So rather than compelling people from above
>> >> >> (government)
>> >> >> to learn English, it would seem more logical that people themselves
>> >> >> would
>> >> >> want to learn the nation's common language if those people have a
>> >> >> vision of a
>> >> >> better life that they feel they can achieve. I believe this has
>> >> >> always
>> >> >> been the
>> >> >> basis of every group's immigration everywhere in the world.
>> >> >>
>> >> >> Perhaps after the U.S. gets its fiscal house in order, it could
>> >> >> finance
>> >> >> an immigration program that includes ESL courses, thus giving people
>> >> >> the option
>> >> >> to attend or not to attend. That way, people who do not want to learn
>> >> >> the nation's
>> >> >> L1 would not be compelled to, but people who do, would have free
>> >> >> lessons, say,
>> >> >> to get themselves to a B1 (intermediate) level (Common European
>> >> >> Frameworks). People
>> >> >> who would like to get to an advanced level could do so either through
>> >> >> self-study or
>> >> >> through community language programs.
>> >> >>
>> >> >> Let us not forget that non-native speakers must take various
>> >> >> standardized tests to
>> >> >> be admitted to many universities and colleges. I'm not sure if
>> >> >> community colleges
>> >> >> require TOEFL, GMAT, SAT etc. So, the fact remains, David, that
>> >> >> English is the nation's
>> >> >> L1 and the future of every immigrant who wants to better his life and
>> >> >> the life of his
>> >> >> children resides in learning that L1.
>> >> >>
>> >> >> Linguistically yours,
>> >> >>
>> >> >> Myrna
>> >> >>
>> >> >>
>> >> >> Myrna Goldstein, B.S.J., MATESL
>> >> >> Founder, Director
>> >> >> Are You in Your English File??
>> >> >> Second Language Learning Research Center
>> >> >> Eilat, Israel (formerly Milan, Italy)
>> >> >>
>> >> >> Member:
>> >> >> TESOL
>> >> >> Linguistic Society of America
>> >> >> American Association for Applied Linguistics
>> >> >>
>> >> >> e: myrnaenglishfile at gmail.com<mailto:myrnaenglishfile at gmail.com>
>> >> >> Skype: myinmi
>> >> >> c:  ++972 053 525 5360
>> >> >>
>> >> >>
>> >> >>
>> >> >>
>> >> >>
>> >> >>
>> >> >> On Feb 3, 2013, at 2:35 AM, David Balosa wrote:
>> >> >>
>> >> >>
>> >> >> Political Economy of Culture: Where Should President Obama Start: By
>> >> >> Designing a Consistent National Language Policy or by Requiring
>> >> >> illegal Immigrant to Learn English as a Path to the United States
>> >> >> Citizenship?
>> >> >>                                                                  By
>> >> >> David Balosa
>> >> >>                                             University of Maryland
>> >> >> Baltimore County, (UMBC)
>> >> >>
>> >> >>
>> >> >>        Spanish is currently spoken as a first language by
>> >> >> approximately twenty-two million people
>> >> >>         in the United States. The Hispanics are currently America's
>> >> >> fastest growing ethnic
>> >> >>         community and their numbers are set to rise to 96.5 million
>> >> >> by 2050. This is not without
>> >> >>         problems as the United States does not have legislation which
>> >> >> states that English is the
>> >> >>         official language of the Union; it has always relied on the
>> >> >> desire of immigrants for social
>> >> >>         assimilation and mobility to consolidate the pre-eminence of
>> >> >> English.
>> >> >>
>> >> >> (Miranda
>> >> >>  Stewart, 1999: 6-7)
>> >> >>
>> >> >> In his address regarding "Fixing broken immigration system" entitled
>> >> >> "Vision for winning the future" President Obama mentioned four key
>> >> >> points which he calls accountabilities and responsibilities: 1.
>> >> >> Responsibility by the federal government to secure our borders, 2.
>> >> >> Accountability for businesses that break the law by undermining
>> >> >> American workers and exploiting undocumented workers,
>> >> >> 3. Strengthening our economic competitiveness by creating a legal
>> >> >> immigration system that reflects our values and diverse needs, and 4.
>> >> >> Responsibility from people who are living in the United States
>> >> >> illegally. My question for discussion and my reflection will  focus
>> >> >> on
>> >> >> the president's point number 4. I think that the President plays too
>> >> >> much politics here and that he is undermining the scholarship on the
>> >> >> everlasting debate on language policy in the United States. Fixing
>> >> >> broken immigration system is one thing, but requiring illegal
>> >> >> immigrants to learn English as one of the requirements is tantamount
>> >> >> to English-Only America movement. Until there is a coherent language
>> >> >> policy, by coherent I mean agreed upon by the United States citizens,
>> >> >> a unidirectional language requirement by federal officials,
>> >> >> especially
>> >> >> the president of the United States is getting out of the house
>> >> >> through
>> >> >> the back door. I am not saying that illegal immigrant should not
>> >> >> learn
>> >> >> English or Spanish, the point is that so far there is no legal basis
>> >> >> to require any one to learn English for what so ever in the United
>> >> >> States. If the President is going to initiative a path to language
>> >> >> policy weather English or English and Spanish as official languages,
>> >> >> then the United States will make a big step forward in solving big
>> >> >> issues regarding intercultural relations. To clear understand my
>> >> >> point, let's analyze the president approach to learning English as a
>> >> >> requirement to illegal immigrant path to the United States
>> >> >> Citizenship.
>> >> >>
>> >> >>     One of the key requirements that the represent mentioned that
>> >> >> illegal immigrants living in U.S. must fulfill to the path of U.S.
>> >> >> citizenship is learning English. The president's statement reads: "
>> >> >> Those people living here illegally must also be held accountable for
>> >> >> their actions and get on the right side of the law by registering and
>> >> >> undergoing national security and criminal background checks, paying
>> >> >> taxes and a penalty, and learning English before they can get in line
>> >> >> to become eligible for citizenship. Being a citizen of this country
>> >> >> comes not only with rights but also with fundamental
>> >> >> responsibilities.
>> >> >> We can create a pathway for legal status that is fair and reflects
>> >> >> our
>> >> >> values." Wait a minute! Is Mr. President here trying to have his cake
>> >> >> and eat it too? Since the president favorite sentence in this
>> >> >> immigration debate is "We are a nation of law and a nation of
>> >> >> immigrants", is the president telling us that English is going to
>> >> >> become the fundamental language of American values? How about the 55
>> >> >> millions U.S. Spanish -speakers? Do their language and culture also
>> >> >> contribute to the American Values? Should U.S. citizens working for
>> >> >> Univisions, Telemondo, UNI-MAS, etc. who may also contribute to the
>> >> >> economic competitiveness of U.S. be required to learn English for
>> >> >> U.S.
>> >> >> citizenship?  According to Stewart (1999:6-7), "The Hispanics are
>> >> >> currently America's fastest growing ethnic community and their
>> >> >> numbers
>> >> >> are set to rise to 96.5 million by 2050 (quoting, The Guardian,
>> >> >> 16.07.98)." Stewart observes that "This is not without problems as
>> >> >> the
>> >> >> United States does not have legislation which states that English is
>> >> >> the official language of the Union; it has always relied on the
>> >> >> desire
>> >> >> of immigrants for social assimilation and mobility to consolidate the
>> >> >> pre-eminence of English."
>> >> >>     During the 2008 Democratic presidential election primary debate,
>> >> >> President Obama, Senator Obama at that time articulated, when he was
>> >> >> asked by a CNN journalist weather English should be the Official
>> >> >> language of the United States that, "We should not focus on issue
>> >> >> that
>> >> >> divide us, instead we should focus on how to fix our broken
>> >> >> immigration system." It has been the politics of escape goat forever
>> >> >> when it comes to regulating language policy in fair and realistic way
>> >> >> in the U.S. President Obama, after winning 75 % of Latino votes
>> >> >> without questioning weather they spoke English or not at the time
>> >> >> they
>> >> >> went voting now is suggesting learning English as a requirement for
>> >> >> legal immigration status. If learning a language was an easy task,
>> >> >> most college graduates U.S. would be speaking Spanish fluently. Since
>> >> >> President Obama likes to look at fair game plays, would not t be a
>> >> >> fair game to say all illegal immigrants must learn both English and
>> >> >> Spanish as a requirement to citizenship?
>> >> >>     One may infers that requiring learning English alone is a support
>> >> >> to English -Only movement. This approach undermines the substantial
>> >> >> contribution of Hispanic culture to the values of the United States.
>> >> >> The "Latinazization" (Benitez, 2007) of illigal immigrants may also
>> >> >> be
>> >> >> a valuable inference if we don't require illegal immigrant to learn
>> >> >> Spanish as well. Will various English dialect speakers be required to
>> >> >> learn American Standard English if that what Mr. President meant? The
>> >> >> "World Englishes" (Mesthrie & Bhatt, 2008) as well as the world
>> >> >> Spanishes (Stewart, 1999; Lorenzo-Dus, 2011) can only be used as
>> >> >> requirement for national immigration legal status after they have
>> >> >> been
>> >> >> adopted as Official language of the nation. Otherwise they should not
>> >> >> be mentioned in the fixing broken immigration system.
>> >> >>
>> >> >>   In Conclusion, It is not only the immigration system that is
>> >> >> broken, it is the entire public policy system that is broken. If Mr.
>> >> >> President wants to start fixing this broken system of public policy
>> >> >> the workable strategy would be looking at the policy of that public
>> >> >> or
>> >> >> social sector setting, fix it, that is, make it if it is a
>> >> >> commonsensical argument and truly reflective of U.S. values, a law of
>> >> >> the nation. Since thee is no federal law regulating languages in
>> >> >> U.S.,
>> >> >> it would  illegal to require a given language learning as a
>> >> >> requirement to U.S. citizenship. Requiring learning English will
>> >> >> sound
>> >> >> like a cultural hegemonic strategy and  it will not reflect what the
>> >> >> president calls "A smart 21st century" - a century of  people and
>> >> >> communities cohesion by consensus, that is people decide their
>> >> >> intercultural democratic rules of governance not bias policy makers.
>> >> >> Either English alone or English and Spanish as co-official languages
>> >> >> for the United States- why not create a referendum on this issue and
>> >> >> stick to what the U.S. diverse population decide. It will make more
>> >> >> sense after people will look at these two global languages - both
>> >> >> spoken by significant numbers of legal U.S. citizens in the ballot
>> >> >> and
>> >> >> let the people decide. It is only after that referendum that all
>> >> >> cultural groups will live with the decision weather they like it or
>> >> >> not. Because it will become the law of the land. Leaving the issue on
>> >> >> the policy makers whose bias attitude and cultural hegemony have been
>> >> >> demonstrated through centuries will never lead the U.S. to the Smart
>> >> >> 21st century language policy. Should not a true vision for the future
>> >> >> of the United States plan also for a language which the numbers of
>> >> >> its
>> >> >> speakers will reach 96.5 million in 2050? Should the U.S. language
>> >> >> policymakers understand that a language policy that reflects the
>> >> >> cultural reality of the country makes the country more prosperous
>> >> >> economically and culturally? May be the example of Luxembourg, South
>> >> >> Africa, Paraguay, and Switzerland will inspire us as we plan for a
>> >> >> "smart 21st century". What do you think?
>> >> >>
>> >> >>
>> >> >> References
>> >> >>
>> >> >> Benitez, C. (2007). Latinization: How Latino culture is transforming
>> >> >> the U.S. New York: Paramount
>> >> >>     Market Publishing.
>> >> >> Donnelly, J. (2003). Universal human rights: In theory and practice
>> >> >> (2nd. ed.). New York: Cornell
>> >> >>     University Press.
>> >> >> Lorenzo-Dus, N. (ed.) (2011). Spanish at work: Analyzing
>> >> >> institutional
>> >> >> discourse across the Spanish-
>> >> >>     speaking world. New York: Palgrave MacMillan.
>> >> >> Mesthirie, R. & Bhatt, R. M. (2008). World Englishes: The study of
>> >> >> new
>> >> >> linguistic varieties. New York:
>> >> >>     Cambridge University Press.
>> >> >> Stewart, M. (1999). The Spanish language today. New York: Routledge.
>> >> >>
>> >> >>
>> >> >>
>> >> www.whitehouse.gov/issues/fixing-immigration-system-america-s-21st-century-Economy
>> >> >>
>> >> >> <
>> >> http://www.whitehouse.gov/issues/fixing-immigration-system-america-s-21st-century-Economy
>> >> >>
>> >> >> --
>> >> >> *David M. Balosa*
>> >> >> *Doctoral Student, PhD Program in Language, Literacy and Culture
>> >> >> (LLC)*
>> >> >> Research Focus: Intercultural Communication & Cultural Exchange
>> >> >> Interculturalists GSO President 2012-2013
>> >> >> *University of Maryland, Baltimore County (UMBC)
>> >> >> **1000 Hilltop Circle, Baltimore, MD 21250*
>> >> >>
>> >> >> _______________________________________________
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>
> --
> *David M. Balosa*
> *Doctoral Student, PhD Program in Language, Literacy and Culture (LLC)*
> Interculturalists GSO President 2012-2013
> Member of International Academy for Intercultural Research (IAIR)
> *University of Maryland, Baltimore County (UMBC)
> **1000 Hilltop Circle, Baltimore, MD 21250*
> The world would be a better place if we don't close our eyes, our ears, and our mouths to politicians' demagogic discourse.
>
> _______________________________________________
> Edling mailing list
> Edling at bunner.geol.lu.se
> http://bunner.geol.lu.se/mailman/listinfo/edling
>



--
*David M. Balosa*
*Doctoral Student, PhD Program in Language, Literacy and Culture
(LLC)*
Interculturalists GSO President 2012-2013
Member of International Academy for Intercultural Research (IAIR)
*University of Maryland, Baltimore County (UMBC)
**1000 Hilltop Circle, Baltimore, MD 21250*
The world would be a better place if we don't close our eyes, our
ears, and our mouths to politicians' demagogic discourse.

_______________________________________________
Edling mailing list
Edling at bunner.geol.lu.se
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and to write directly to the original sender of any offensive message.
 A copy of this may be forwarded to this list as well.  (H. Schiffman,
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