View Full Version : Language in America
10-12-03, 12:58 AM
Ive gotten so, so sick of people saying:
"Immigrants need to learn the language. Speak English!"
English is fine and all, and the only language I speak. It gets me by in America okay, but its certainly not the only language that I could get around with.
Any company that wants to stay ahead hires CS that speaks different languages, the forerunner being Spanish. Other good ones are Russian, Japanese, Korean, Chinese, Urdu, Hindi, Arabic, Swahili, etc. They get the business because theyre willing to adapt to the customer. If I came to the US and only spoke Punjabi for the first few months, Id look for places where I could use Punjabi in normal situations. If I moved to Laos and only spoke English for the first few months, Id try to find where I could get by speaking only English.
Immigrants who move to the US and never learn English have kids that learn perfect English in school, and their parents native tongue at home. Then we have bilingual citizens.
Most of the Americans posting on this board are either immigrants or the childrens etc of immigrants. My great grandfather only spoke a dialect of Olde English. My girlfriends parents only spoke Japanese. My godfather only spoke Thai and Dutch for his first three years in the US. They all got along fine, because they had a community within a community to interact with... They werent some horrible burden on the average taxpayer.
So anyway, my point is; People are not obligated to learn English when they move here. This country was founded on immigration, and its still moving in that direction. Give people a break, and if youre one of those pseudo bigots who whine and complain about how they dont speak the language, stuff it ^_^
10-12-03, 01:50 AM
You need at least one base language, whatever it is. To at least ''help'' they dont need to learn any specific languages, but learning the base to anything universal would help..
Of course, english isnt my native language, so who am I to speak... Edited by: Glip the Gnome at: 10/12/03 2:01 am
10-12-03, 01:53 AM
Hey stupid, you're not allowed to make personal attacks.
(That was a joke, don't let Gyorg try and ban me!) "Age and wisdom don't always go together, I've found. ... Some people just become stupid with more authority." -- Terry Pratchett
10-12-03, 01:56 AM
I was calling the aliens that =p
As in those people who dont speak enough languages.. ok ok, my b
Glip the Gnome
10-12-03, 02:01 AM
Ohhh, I get the emoticon now. Zulian and I are both dumb apparantly, he pointed it out to me :P
Uhh, lemme fix it :P
10-12-03, 02:03 AM
Ahahah, sorry, you were a small stepping stone in my plot to world, or at least board, domination. Next up, we'll see how late it has to be before I can get him to edit another mod's post... >:P
sig Edited by: Gyorg at: 10/12/03 7:45 am
10-12-03, 02:06 AM
So much playa' hatin'
10-12-03, 06:34 AM
I find it reprehensible that anyone would have such an intolerant attitude toward our foriegn-born visitors and U.S. citizens. It's a shame, really. What's the harm in them not speaking English? You can't understand them? Boo hoo. So what, you shouldn't be listening to their conversation in the first place.
I got a flat tire about a month and a half ago. I pulled over to the side of the road, completely confused as to what to do. As I was getting the tire out of the back of the car, a van pulled over and a man came out, offering to help me.
I could understand he meant well by the gestures he used, but he didn't speak a word of English. I couldn't even understand what he said his name was, his accent was so thick. The fact that one person would take time out of his day to help a gringo woman really impressed me.
10-12-03, 09:11 AM
The majority of communication is physical anyway. Facial expressions, hand gestures, simply tone of voice all play more of a role than the actual words.
An old Asian man approached me while I was drawing in the park once, and didn't speak any English to me, but explained through hand gestures and such that he was an artist and he thought my drawings were nice.
I probably wouldn't have remembered that event at all if someone who spoke English had approached me--so I look on people who don't speak English as a plus. where anger is big and fueled by hydrogen
10-12-03, 09:29 AM
I think this attitude stems from taxpayer-funded ESL classes. I have no problem with people that speak little to no english, but I do take issue with funding a culture conversion.
10-12-03, 10:25 AM
As an alien resident I always do my best to improve my English.
I don't think that it's a waste of taxpayer money to have free English classes at local libraries/schools.
This country was built by immigrants, and immigrant workers pay taxes too.
Taxpayer money spent on social issues is never a waste, the immigrant worker that learns English well can improve his education, have a career, a dignitous life and ultimately be a asset to society.
10-12-03, 11:30 AM
Taxpayer money spent on social issues is never a waste, the immigrant worker that learns English well can improve his education, have a career, a dignitous life and ultimately be a asset to society.
That is very true. I wouldn't say it's never a waste to put money into social issues, but free English classes are definatly not a waste. I do think everyone in America should learn English, because otherwise the 'melting pot' is lost, and instead we get kind of a patchwork quilt. This doesn't mean that we shouldn't learn other languages though. I know passable Spanish and some ASL.
Glip the Gnome
10-12-03, 11:39 AM
Quote:What's the harm in them not speaking English? You can't understand them? Boo hoo. So what, you shouldn't be listening to their conversation in the first place.
However, when I have to order my spicey chicken sandwich like "numero seis, grande, con Coke" from Jack in the Box it /is/ a problem, because I don't know how to say "extra mayo and curly fries" in Spanish :P
10-12-03, 12:57 PM
On top of the free english classes for immigrants, we should begin teaching spanish to the younger generation, especiallys in the southwest, where immigration is very high. And it's been proven that those who speak 2+ languages are overall "smarter" (i.e. do better in school, work, etc.). A good thing all around.
ps. I feel for ya Glip, i lived in farmer country, CA for a number of years. But i'll be damned if they didn't had the best mexican food i've ever had, for good prices too.
10-12-03, 01:21 PM
They should learn english because it is a major pain in the ass sometimes. Stay in your ethnic neighborhood if you don't want to speak english. Hate to be harsh but most of these people work jobs like fast food. Ordering from people who don't understand you is hard as hell sometimes. Now imagine working in a place where most people speak english and someone comes in trying to order food in another language. It just complicates things. If we all in this country could speak a common language it would break down a major barrier between people.
10-12-03, 02:00 PM
Quote:They should learn english because it is a major pain in the ass sometimes. Stay in your ethnic neighborhood if you don't want to speak english.
This is exactly what Im talking about. How presumptious and arrogant an attitude...
Eliminating a snag in the CS industry will not tear down a barrier between two cultures.
I know when I eat at a Vietmanese or Ethiopian place, I can point at the menu, and I know the name of the beer I want to order. Easy enough, yknow?
10-12-03, 03:23 PM
if any language should be considered the offical second one in the US its spanish. honestly it should be taught at a young age just as alot of countries do with english, and schools in my area would have no trouble finding teachers atleast lol.
10-12-03, 04:39 PM
Quote: but I do take issue with funding a culture conversion.
Typical right wing @#%$.
I don't want to teach immigrants english with tax dollars but I will justify $100 billion to make Iraq a democracy.
It's only wrong if you get caught.If consequences dictate my course of action I should play GOD
Glip the Gnome
10-12-03, 04:53 PM
Don't even freaking think about bringing that into this thread
/bazooka Edited by: Glip the Gnome at: 10/12/03 5:12 pm
You gotta admit though, he's got a point.
10-12-03, 05:19 PM
What's wrong with teaching immigrants English?
The only problem I have is spending tax money to teach immigrants History or Math in another language, instead of teaching them English. Or spending tax money to print forms in 100 different languages rather than requiring people to learn English. Or spending tax money to have interpreters on hand for service groups for every conceivable language rather than requiring people to learn English.
But it's a dull one, and he has to use it in every single thread he posts in.
I have a huge amount of support for programs that help teach recent immigrants english, and allow them to integrate into mainstream US society.
Trying to "support" people by letting them use other, lesser known languages here in the US is little better than forcing them into second rate, low paying jobs, with no room for advancement.
10-12-03, 08:16 PM
Hey, anyone who wants to use the sort of government programs that are offered, but not required, will have to learn English. Anyone who wants to work an English-oriented job beyond floor mopper at the Boston Market, will have to learn English.
But nobody should ever, ever be obligated to learn English.
There is nothing wrong with printing the mandatory government forms in Spanish, or Urdu, or Somalian. There are citizens of the US who only speak those languages, and people who already speak English arnt any better or more important than those who dont.
I can't speak for the US but I can say how it is here. Here immigrants are required to take Icelandic courses. Then again, Icelandic is the official language - and having a huge support network for people who don't speak the language, don't speak English and yet want to get citizenship is quite simply impractical for a small nation. Not to mention the potential for such people to get exploited because of their limited ability to communicate with those in charge/around them. This has been a problem here and from all I've personally seen this is something that does go away as the person gets better at Icelandic and becomes more aware of his or her rights through talking to the locals.
Having at least some common language for a nation is a good thing I think. Example: There are quite a few people from Vietnam and Thailand here and they make up almost all the Asian population in the country. Many of them could not talk to each other, and as the Vietnamese came over earlier the Thai could have benefited from their experience. By knowing the common language of the country they can now talk to each other as well as other ethnic groups and are IMO stronger for it as a group.
10-12-03, 08:51 PM
Ok now coming from someone who used to work around very large and very dangerous production machines(printing presses) having a worker who doesnt communicate or understand instructions is a major safety hazzard to themselves and people around them. Now they want the money these jobs provide so there gonna apply for these jobs and if the company is having a hard time filling slots they'll hire dang near anyone so to just say no big deal they can speak whatever they want is dangerous.
I'm more than happy to have some of my tax money go to legal citizens to help them learn english.
10-12-03, 09:08 PM
If I were going to move to a different country, I sure as hell would take the necessary steps to learn the official language of the country.
Where I work we have some people that do not speak or understand english. I don't normally interact with them very much as it is a seperate department, but the few times where I had to, it was almost impossible to tell them what I had to tell them. There is something just not right about that.
I don't begrudge anyone their right to speak whatever language they want, but it presents in many cases great difficulties especially in a work setting.
Living in united states should be precluded by being able to speak english. Isn't/aren't the citizenship test(s?) in english? -- Formerly Squink McPoke
10-12-03, 10:05 PM
A company that hires people who dont speak English has only itself to blame. You should either resent or take it up with the HR department, not resent the workers. They have no business working in an environment where they are in danger, or become a danger to others, for lack of communication. And the blame should be squarely placed on who hired them.
Knowing English is nothing but an advantage. There really is no reason not to learn it. But we should never, ever make it a requirement to live here.
The day that happens, this places stops being the melting pot and starts becoming another nationalistic, xenophobic country like weve all heard about. France comes to mind.
10-12-03, 11:15 PM
Eh, when I go to Wendy's, McDonald's, Burger King, Quizno's, Subway, Taco Bell (ok, Taco Bell I'll give them spanish.. maybe... it's mexican, right?)... and I can't understand what they tell me, and I never get what I actually ordered "No Lettuce, Tomato, or Onion, and no Ice in my Coke"... I have problems.
I don't think they shouldn't be able to get jobs, but I think if they want a job dealing directly with people who speak english, they need to speak it well enough to understand me, and for me to understand them. My company will not hire someone who we cannot understand, since we know our clients would have an even tougher time (it's hard enough not being too techy, much less too techy and non-english... we have a few people whose first language was not english, but they speak it well enough people understand EVERYTHING).
I don't care if the guy in the back making my burger doesn't know english beyond being able to see "no tomato" and understanding it. I don't care if the guy mopping the floor and cleaning the windows smiles and makes everyone happy because he's happy, but doesn't speak a word of english. I know they are all trying, and will eventually know enough to fit in with the other 90% of our society who speak english. I have a problem with people I have to deal with directly who don't know english.
I hate clients who don't know enough english to tell me the problem, but they normally have kids who can come translate... hehe Veteran Kakarat Doomstalker
65 Barbarian Assassin
10-13-03, 05:42 AM
Please.. The oh I got cheese on my burger when I ordered onions whine is so weak. People in those jobs work long hard hours to bring home $300 per week. Scrapping in 15K a year if lucky. Living in poverty by US standards but doing well and making more than they could in their country. Their kids learn the language helping other parents and family members understand what is going on. It is much easier to learn languages at a young age. The older you are, the harder it is. Thats the way the human brain works. These kid's are now bilungual and every child they have will be a citizen that speaks two languages. A good thing.
10-13-03, 06:45 AM
I often get the wrong stuff at fast food restaurants even when the staff all seem to (nominally) speak English as their first language.
10-13-03, 07:49 AM
My father emigrated to this country after his home country was first ravaged by The Nazis the taken over by the communists, he spoke NO ENGLISH but ya know what he learned it, not perfectly 40+ years in this country and he still sounds like Boris Badanov, and he became wildy successful, the people he emigrated here with who didn't learn English and stayed to their "community" are still cleaning office buildings and doing drywall.
He never raised me or my sister as anything other than American, we knew about the "old country" and visited it a few times, but nothing but English was ever spoken in our house and no loyalty to an country other than America promoted.
So whats my point? Take from this what you will.. but as my father said to his landscaper, (in a Boris Badanov accent) " VAT??? I can no understand you, speek to me in Aenglish or you are FIRED" "Classes are not that out of balance --AbsorEQ"
"I'm going to torment you until you're translucent!!!"
10-13-03, 07:52 AM
anyone who has ever played a RPG of any sort knows the value of Common. Ever tried playing a Half-Orc in a city where only common is spoken, and you only know Orcish?
dont be absurd. English is Common. If you move to the US, you *will* need to learn English. If you havent yet, that doesnt make you a bad person - it simply means your lacking a basic skill you need. You, the immigrant. Immigrants not knowing English doesnt hurt me any. It hurts *them*. If youre opposing putting systems in place to help and require immigrants to learn english, then youre anti-immigrant. End of story.
On a side note, I personally have a ton of respect for the folks who make this sort of move without already having the language skills in place. That takes balls.
I have nothing but disdain for 3rd and 4th generation immigrants who speak with unintelligible accents. Learning english involves learning english people can actually *understand*... I shouldnt have any difficulty understanding what youre saying if your grandparents were born in the US.
Take 3 guesses where such accents come from...
I think its absolutely hysterical that you can make the claim with a straight face that requiring immigrants to learn english will detsroy the "melting pot' concept, when in fact the exact opposite is true. I'd be very interested in hearing the "logic" that led to that conclusion.
When my german ancestors came to this melting pot 6 generations ago, guess what language they learned? Veda Kai'RinEdited by: Aldarion Shard at: 10/13/03 7:55 am
10-13-03, 09:54 AM
Freon, why do you defend laziness? I am an immigrant, and the first thing I did after coming over is learn english. I work in the Software industry, and there is A LOT of immigrants here. In my last two jobs, there has only been one American-born co-worker. The complete lack of communication with my co-workers was one of the reasons I left my last job. It was a company owned by a Chinese guy, and of course he hired mostly Chinese workers. Half of them barely spoke enough english to order a fries and a coke. Try explaining what ODBLE is to someone who doesn't speak english.
Quote:" VAT??? I can no understand you, speek to me in Aenglish or you are FIRED"
Haha, I can hear it in my head.
10-13-03, 11:53 AM
Hey, I'd LOVE to be bilingual, but when my great-grandparents came here from Poland, they would not allow their children to speak Polish, saying "you are in America now, you speak English". They themselves tried to speak English as well as they could.
My grandparents' generation therefore didn't learn much Polish, my parents' even less... At this point me and my cousins are lucky if we can say kielbasa, let alone spell it...
Edit: I had a point and I forgot to make it...
If you move to any country, you should at least make a very good attempt to learn the language.
Why should someone coming to America in 2003 be any different from the immigrants who came over 100 years ago, who sought for themselves and their children to become American, rather than a foreigner living in America? There's a world of difference.
(Back In Black)
Delissandra Splitshadow - Veteran Deceiver of the Circle of Unseen Hands
Grandmaster Poisoner (250), Master Potter (191), Grandmaster Lush (200)
Cause I'm back on the track
And I'm beatin' the flack
Nobody's gonna get me on another rap Edited by: Dragynphyre at: 10/13/03 11:58 am
10-13-03, 01:26 PM
I think American schools should offer foreign language classes to kids at an earlier age. Learning another language can also help educate people about other cultures.
10-13-03, 01:55 PM
I think they should start teaching a second langauge in like 4th grade and make it mandatory in the U.S. Spanish would be good for some.. don't really know about others.. possibly french? I would personally like to learn japanese or german.
10-13-03, 07:29 PM
If you want to live in America, you need to be an American. If you have more pride in your other country, then you need to stay the @#%$ there. The only reason I don't mind things being printed in other languages(signs etc.) is because of tourists.
I once worked at a gas station, this hispanic lady comes in, speaking spanish to me, really fast, and not even trying to use hand gestures. "No hable espanol" I say... she then starts cussing, and throwing her arms up in the air, and basically calls me an idiot "Pinche bendeho(sp?)". I loved that though... I just love how she comes to this country, seeking help and an easier life, because her country of birth is so @#%$ stupid.... we accept her, and allow her to live here and assist her with tax dollars(I saw a Lone Star food stamp card in her wallet), and she wont even learn our language... and then calls ME the idiot for not speaking a language from another country that I have been to only once, in which I went to a TOURIST bar(all workers speak english). Hell, I even know a somewhat decent amount of spanish that I have learned on accident just from behind around hispanics, much more than she knew of english. blah I could rant about this @#%$ all night.
The true power of not testing your patches. (see sig)Edited by: Kaail Lasra at: 10/13/03 7:31 pm
10-13-03, 07:43 PM
The best is when you see large mexican flags in the back window of the pick up and a bumper sticker that says "F**k the INS".
10-13-03, 07:54 PM
I want that sticker, I have been married to an American citizen for 6 years and they still can't get their stuff togheter to deliver my green card. In little over 6 months I will be elegible to apply for citizenship and it won't matter then.
I still only have a crappy piece of paper with a picture and fingerprint slapped on I can show in place of the green card because they take years to process a stupid change of address and keep delivering the card to the wrong place then sending it back and destroying it.
I pay my taxes every year, I already spent over $1500 on lawyer help and forms, I do not want to overthrow the American Government, engage in poligamy, be part of a communist or other totalitarian party, I didn't take part in the Holocaust am not part of a terrorist organization, I keep filling out silly forms that ask stuff like this and all I want is simply to get my stupid green card with the stupid picture.
BUT they can't send the Green Card to my current addess because sending two separate forms trough certified mail and calling them on the phone isn't enough for them to notice I moved. GRRRRR
EDIT: i spel Englis gud Edited by: Xanyia at: 10/13/03 7:56 pm
Where I work english is almost the second language. I have to comunicate with Chinease speakers, Philipino speakers, and Spanish native speakers. I've also grown up comunicating with a deaf brother and sister.
And you know what I've learned from all this experience that idiots like some of the people that posted here have driven in to there mind that because they're learning english and can't speak it well enough yet that they're stupid and they shoudln't be here. Well @#$% you all. These people I've had to work with work 14 hour days, 50% more then you. Not only that they get paid less and are easily taken advantage of. And when they're not working they're learning a second language.
I've had a boss tell a coworker she was stupid because she didn't know english well and it was taking her awhile to master. I sure hope it made her feel big, because she's quite tiny compared to this women that moved from china, with several kids works 14 hours a day eats barely anything to make sure her kids can eat and and have the money for school supplies and a house over there head. Ohhh but you're a whoel lot smarter and work harder uh huh sure.
I'm tired of people treating imigrants with disrespect. Hey I'll be the first to point out your slacking. But if you can't show respect for someone that moves thousands of miles away in a country that you barely can understand what anyone says and work your ass off learn a new language and raise a family at the same time, they'll have alot more respect from me then someone of you kids that got handed schooling, cars etc etc. Maybe you should step back and see how hard some of these people work at trying to become a citzen of the u.s. and try to fit into this country. And look at how hard you had to work, maybe you'll think you're alot luckyier then you are and these people that are trying to learn english as a second language work a hella lot harder then you do, because they didn't get that lucky.
Or maybe i'm just mumbling and ranting because I'm tired. But i'm sick of peoples disrespect for hard working people that werent as lucky as you and me.
10-13-03, 09:28 PM
Everyone wants to learn japanese for the video games and the anime. "Classes are not that out of balance -AbsorEQ"
10-14-03, 12:27 AM
If I learned Japanese I would make it a point to never waste my new found skill on anime.
You are correct on video games though.
10-14-03, 07:49 AM
I have a live in translator. Go go Azn gf!
10-14-03, 07:51 AM
How do you say "I told you so" in Japanese?
10-14-03, 07:56 AM
Shes asleep (and annoying the @#%$ outta me by grinding her teeth. @#%$ bruxism). Ill ask her later and post it for ya.
10-14-03, 08:18 AM
Yuttadesho, she says.
10-14-03, 10:19 AM
I just love when people think that saying something LOUDER and SLOWER will all of a sudden have the non-lingual person going "OH! THAT'S what you were saying, I understand you PERFECTLY now!"
Yeah, some folks that don't know the language WELL might understand better if you slow down. I know I can't keep up with my Latino co-workers when they speak Spanish - I catch maybe every 4th word, if that...
10-14-03, 10:43 AM
Like I used to tell my friend about my dad, " he's Croatian not deaf" "Classes are not that out of balance --AbsorEQ"
"I'm going to torment you until you're translucent!!!"
10-14-03, 11:17 AM
I really don't just dislike people because they can't speak english. In fact, in high school I used to help an asian kid in my class with english(and he helped me with my japanese in return). I think I might just sub-conciously be alittle pissed that I've been living on my own since I turned 17, and was poor the entire time(living off ramen noodles, and packaged 20 for 2.50 borrito's exclusively). now I make a big fat 9ishk a year, yet, I cannot get any medical coverage/college grants for the life of me.
But I 'spose thats another subject of it's own =\
And honestly, if I was going to go live in another contry, the FIRST thing(actually, befor I even moved there) I would do, is learn that countries language.
10-14-03, 01:16 PM
I think the door should swing both ways. I would love it if they had free classes for other languages.
10-14-03, 03:01 PM
Know what this is from Wix?
Quote:To declare war, grant letters of marque and reprisal, and make rules concerning captures on land and water;
Bonus points if you know what a latter of marque is (past and present uses!).
Seriously though, I think immigration should take some work. My ancestors had to learn english, and the government sure as hell didn't pay for their classes. I am doubly opposed to this when you think of illegal aliens.
Right or left wing? Both are @#%$.
Immigrants who really want to come to the US will do so anyways, whether their english is paid for or not. I know a few who busted their tails to learn english without formal education.
Everyone in the safehouse knows what a letter of marque is. If not, they should walk the plank!
10-14-03, 03:33 PM
Lisboa, you just made my day.
10-14-03, 09:09 PM
I only talk loud and slow to tall people.
10-14-03, 09:25 PM
LOL "Classes are not that out of balance --AbsorEQ"
"I'm going to torment you until you're translucent!!!"
EZ_Ewan aka nach0king
10-15-03, 06:08 AM
Quote:However, when I have to order my spicey chicken sandwich like "numero seis, grande, con Coke" from Jack in the Box it /is/ a problem, because I don't know how to say "extra mayo and curly fries" in Spanish :P
Then you need to take that up with Jack-In-The-Box.
65 Gnome Rogue & Veteran on Bristlebane
Zebrastreifen weiß und blau
10-15-03, 07:22 AM
Ok, turn the tables...
You only speak english, your plane/boat/car/transporter blows up and for some freak reason you are alone and unemployed in say, Paris or Poland or Istambul and no one speaks English.
Will you get free schooling? Unemployment? Housing? Language classes? NFW. Why should you? You have contributed zero to them. You scrape by and learn a few prases to get on your feet and you work your butt off to learn the native tounge and customs so you CAN contribute and interact. You don't expect them to just give you everything you need if you don't even try.
Yet here in America, we ARE expected. And yes, it gets old when you give 100% and folks don't even try.
I spent a lot of time around a certain New England city where not only have folks never bothered learning a word of English, but the still urinate in a pot and toss it outside because that is what they did 10 years ago when they lived in their country.
Please, just TRY to learn the language of the country you are living in. It isn't that hard. It isn't too much to ask.
Well, Some things I do mind, but Free Language classes for legal immigrants is not one of them.
In fact, at a former church I went to, we sponsored a spanish speaking church, that met in a building behind ours. One of the activities that I enjoyed the most was the tutoring classes where we would help some of the spanish speaking church members get more proficient in English.
Some were quite fluent in English (Generally the kids), others could barely put two words together, but I'd say over half of the congregation was trying to learn the language.
And I have to give them a lot of credit for that. Not only is it a very difficult task, but its absolutely the most important step they can take toward becoming more integrated into mainstream culture.
10-15-03, 08:33 AM
At the ripe old age of 14, I started highschool in Taichung, Taiwan as a missionary. My grand purpose was to bring Christianity to the barbaric masses.
When I was over there I lived on an American complex that housed the American buisinesspeople that had come to Taiwan to work. There was a large budding company called Airync that my father had been hired by to bring their computer systems current. Anyway, that's off subject, but...
I had to commute to a few miles outside of Taipei to go to my Christian school (Morrison Academy), and to list every single country that was represented there by its students would run this post WAY too long.
Anyway, people were allowed to commute off campus for lunch periods. I never frequented any Taiwanese restaraunts (their health codes weren't exactly on par with the United States') but to try and grab a Coca-Cola from a snack shop was an interesting experience. Over there, I was the foreigner. I was the stupid immigrant who couldn't speak a lick of Hokkien.
Also, to get an English speaking operator was a rare occurance, so I would put in my 20NT punch card (yes, the payphones used pre-purchased punch cards that would be stamped as time expired on it) into the phone and procede to spend 10 minutes trying to say "Li cam e hau kong Engbun?" or "Li e hime gong Engbun bo?" until I could finally get an English speaking operator. Half the time they would just hang up on me. I wouldn't have been able to complain to their supervisor anyway, so what did they care?
I still have my fits or moments of frustration with people who can't speak English or are in my country, but I have the patience to suggest they speak in English or at least find someone who can translate if they cannot. The point is that, take it from someone who knows how immigrants feel, because I had to ask my dad to even remember the phrase "Do you speak English?"
They are just as frustrated as you are.
10-15-03, 09:07 AM
Quote:These kid's are now bilingual and every child they have will be a citizen that speaks two languages
Statistically the knowledge of the "foreign language" will die out by the third generation because it becomes less and less important and less and less useful to know while living here. I think foreigners learning English is incredibly important because it helps them integrate into America.
If they don’t know and understand the language they will most likely move into a local community (little Saigon is the big one around here) where they can get by never learning it and will never integrate into American society, what have we got to gain culturally from that?
We have the programs here in Washington, you can not only get free classes, but the state goes as far as to pay your transportation to and from there. People still choose not to take it though.
10-15-03, 11:11 AM
Quote:We have the programs here in Washington, you can not only get free classes, but the state goes as far as to pay your transportation to and from there. People still choose not to take it though.
A similar thing happens here in San Diego.
There are some real cool free computing oriented classes you can take to improve your job skills and whatnot, but they are advertised so poorly that I couldn't find them on the papers or on the web by myself until a friend told me about the exact name of the school.
I saw the same thing happen in Italy also. They make free classes then people won't come and take them because they don't know they exist or where they are located.
Tomorrow I am going to see if there's is still room in a typing/keyboarding/basic office skills class so I can have some hope of landing a decent job.
It's kinda rough trying to reenter the job market if you have been a housewife for the past six years, have no schooling and are a alien citizen. I have been looking on the paper everyday and office workers seem to be really in high demand, that or salesmen.
I tried selling stuff but it's not for me, I failed to make a living in Italy selling Motorola cell phones in 1990! .
Wish me good luck!
10-15-03, 11:22 AM
You'll do fine, darlin. Similar to a statement I saw in another post: If you can hold your own here in The Safehouse, you can communicate with just about anyone.
10-15-03, 01:16 PM
The job market right now is pretty damn hard for everybody, even the local Wal-mart and McDonalds can afford to be choosy (I have been applying for both for 2 years but havent recieved so much as a returned call).
Walmart has mostly mid 30's people working there. People are generally more dependable as they get older, so I dont really think its that bad (the service there is pretty nice). But I still take it as a personal shot when McDonalds doesnt want to hire a 18 year old guy with a 3.8 GPA and quite a lot of past work experience. Those bastages .
As for the language classes, they definitely are not advertised enough, but they are out there. When I wrote a paper on this years ago it took me 10 minutes and a phonecall to get all the info I needed plus some that I didn't.
The trend now-a-days seems to be that they are seen as less important to immigrant families with children; they can have their child do all the translating for them. My girlfriend is vietnamese and both her parents barely speak any English, so they always use her to call places and talk to people and what not.
On an off topic note, I wish I was 5 again, it would be so much easier to understand these damn foreign language classes I'm taking . Also, this seems to be one of the few posts on safehouse where the democrats met the conservatives opinions. Rather nice if I may say so . Edited by: Bondori Zafiro at: 10/15/03 1:18 pm
Well, I think this issue is one that really doesn't go well across the cosnervative/liberal line.
You have some cons and libs both opposed to programs that integrate non-citizens into the mainstream, each for their own reasons. However, I think the largest chunk of both groups doesn't ahve a problem with the programs in principle at least.
10-15-03, 08:51 PM
I know this isn't common ground for most liberals and republicans, I'm just referring to safehouse . Edited by: Bondori Zafiro at: 10/15/03 8:51 pm