Just some thoughts and ideas going around in my head while trying to figure out where I am and where everyone else is going.

Sunday, May 2, 2010

English Only

A couple of years ago, I was at a party that was being held to celebrate Barak Obama going over the top with enough delegates to win the Democrat candidate for President. I have forgotten which primary night it was, but he was supposed to finally beat Hillary Clinton and bring the Democrats together and beat whoever would be the Republican nominee. However it didn’t turn out that way.

Hillary did her third or fourth comeback and beat back Barak while Governor Huckabee dropped out on the Republican side. I remember how people laughed at Mrs. Huckabee and said that she was so ugly that she must have been a man. For some reason I was surprised at the misogyny going around from both men and women and listened to how they hated Mrs. Clinton primarily because she was female.

I don’t know how the conversation turned to truck drivers and border control, but someone suggested that Mexican truck drivers were a hazard and threat to the road and Americans in general and that they should be regulated and or restricted from entry. When asked why, the young man said because most of them couldn’t even read English. I wondered to myself if having the ability to read The Grapes of Wrath or I know Why the Caged Bird Sings was really a qualification for good driving, but I kept quiet.

Now listening to Tim James who is running for governor of Alabama, I’m starting to wonder if I’m the only one who thinks this language thing is just a bunch of bullshit and that maybe there should be more pressing issues to deal with.


  1. If I learned English to understand this kind of neo-Nazi speech, maybe I should have stuck to my mother tongue.

  2. Hmmm. I don't know if I would qualify this as "Neo-Nazi speech" as much as it is pandering to conservatives. But, you know what? Even conservatives are voicing some opposition to the new law passed in AZ.

  3. There was a time when I would have agreed with Tim James in reference to "if you live in the United States, you should be able to speak English." After a long thoughtout process, I realized that wasn't logical or realistic but narrow minded.

    Good thing Tim James couldn't say what he really wanted to say.

  4. Eduardo - Apparently fascism knows no international boundaries.

    KST - Real Conservatives are people who aren't really concerned with what happens to you and what you do in your private life, only that it doesn't affect them in theirs. Now those people who want us all to march in lockstep to same cultural beat without being able to celebrate our own individualities are known as fascists. This guy is obviously one of them.

    Chet - What Tim really wants to say is that if you are not like us, then you don't deserve to treated like us. If you are not White, Male and Christian, then the Constitution and the Bill of Rights may not apply to you.

  5. He is appealing to the hardcore conservatives

  6. corve - I bet as governor he wouldn't turn anyone away if they didn't speak English when he was collecting their property, or sales, or income taxes. He's appealing to the bigots of Alabama. Those who would believe that equal protection under the law applies only to the right kind.

  7. Curious, I have been an avid reader all my life and was reading at a college level by the 6th grade (that was when city schools actually focused more on academics and your parents disciplined you). I say this because like most teens I got my license at 16 and proceeded to tear up, on avereage, a car a year until I was 23. I am living proof that the abiluty to read and understand english has nothing to do with hand eye coordination or the ability to diferentiate speed limts. Last I checked numbers may be pronounced differently but they look the same all over the world.

    I am really worried that people are using this "post racial" era as an excuse to be openly bigotted. Talk about the irony in that. I keep telling people "It ain't changed that much". I hate it when I'm right.

  8. Ingrid - I think that you are right and that's really sad.


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