Am I the only one who gets really pissed off every time I call some company or government office and have to listen to a recorded message telling me to “Press One For English?” It’s not bad enough that I have to hear this in English, then the damned message tells me the same thing in Spanish!
Does it make me a racist to expect people who come to my country to learn my language? Is it wrong for me to want to preserve the language I grew up with and not have to adapt to a group of newcomers who are apparently either too lazy or too dumb to learn it?
I understand that America is still the great melting pot. That’s fine. The diversity of our people is what has shaped us as a nation. But doesn’t that term “melting pot” mean that immigrants from all over the world come to this country to become part of the overall mixture? How can that happen if they refuse to learn our language?
I’m all for each of us preserving our own individual heritage. However, not to the exclusion of accepting the language of a country where one chooses to live. And I damned sure object to being forced to choose a number to speak in my own native language!
America is made up of people from every corner of the earth. They all come here in search of a better life. Isn’t part of achieving that better life assimilating oneself into the culture of America? How can one do that if they refuse to learn the language?
English, Germans, French, Poles, Chinese, Japanese, Cubans, Mexicans, Greeks and everybody from everywhere have come here to become Americans. So why is it just one language in particular that we seem to be asked to choose as an alternative to English? I don’t have the option to “Press Three For Swahili” or “Press Four For Lithuanian.” Why not?
A couple of years ago, the owner of a sandwich shop in Philadelphia came under fire because he posted a sign asking customers to speak English when ordering. The Philadelphia Commission on Human Relations told the shop’s owner that his sign was discriminatory, and threatened legal action. The case made national news, and eventually the city backed down, but why did it have to happen in the first place?
Since when does freedom of speech, in the form of the restaurant’s sign, have to be set aside to make somebody happy who won’t take the time to learn English? What’s next? Will those restaurant signs that say “No shoes, No shirt, No Service” be deemed to be discriminatory to homeless people who can’t afford clothes? If so, I want them to be judged discriminatory to topless dancers too!
Hey, here’s an idea – how about if we have recordings saying “Press One For English and Press Two If You’re Too Stupid To Speak It?”
Tags: America, Chinese, Cubans, culture of America, discriminatory, diversity of our people, English, English language, freedom of speech, French, Germans, great melting pot, Greeks, heritage, homeless people, immigrants, Japanese, learn our language, Lithuanian, Mexicans, national news, native language, Philadelphia, Poles, Press One For English, recorded message, Spanish, speak English, Swahili