Si se puede!

Chris Kok

Credit: Steve Schirra

Hay mucha gente en este pa¡s que quiere establecer ingl‚s como el idioma oficial. Si esto se realiza, creará muchos problemas.

Los inmigrantes necesitan educaci¢n y servicios m‚dicos. La educaci¢n y servicios m‚dicos son derechos humanos. Si el ingl‚s es el idioma oficial, la gente que no habla ingl‚s no pudiera recibir esos derechos.

El problema de la inmigraci¢n no es un problema nuevo. Los Estados Unidos han tenido mucha inmigraci¢n a trav‚s de su historia. Hubo inmigraci¢n de alemanes, de irlandeses, de italianos, de chinos y de gente de muchos otros pa¡ses.

Los inmigrantes construyeron la econom¡a y la sociedad de los Estados Unidos. Ellos hablaban los idiomas de sus or¡genes, y en tiempo aprendieron ingl‚s. En un tiempo de comercio mundial, los estadounidenses deben aprender más idiomas y no deben limitar los idiomas hablados en este pa¡s.

America is at a decisive moment. Is it the melting pot, or is it racially intolerant? With the question of immigration the question of English as an official language has come as well.

Attempts to make English the official language will result in the refusal of services such as health care and education to people who don’t speak English. This will put an unfair burden on immigrants both legal and illegal. Education and health care are human rights, and the United States should ensure that people receive them regardless of the language a person speaks.

Immigration and racism are major parts of American history. From the “Know Nothings,” who hated the Irish, to anti-Chinese riots, immigration has been met with racism. It is time for this pattern to stop. The United States survived every wave of immigration, and it will survive this one and the United States will be stronger for it. Attacking immigrants now is not the solution.

What is the reason behind this anti-immigrant backlash? Racism! Just look at the description on the Web site of the Minutemen Project: “Future generations will inherit a tangle of rancorous, unassimilated, squabbling cultures with no common bond to hold them together, and a certain guarantee of the death of this nation as a harmonious ‘melting pot.'”

“Historians will write about how a lax America let its unique and coveted form of government and society sink into a quagmire of mutual acrimony among the various sub-nations that will comprise the new self-destructing America.”

These quotes show an assumption of the inability of different cultures coexisting peacefully, and illustrate racism directly with the reference to “sub-nations.” Racism such as this should not be tolerated in the United States.

Currently we live in a world of globalized trade. As businesses get more international in scope, we need to be making a concerted effort to learn more languages. The status quo isn’t good enough, and denying languages such as Spanish is actually a step backwards. Americans need to know more languages in order to compete for jobs in the global market. The United States should encourage schools to teach multiple languages from kindergarten through high school.

If Americans are raised knowing languages such as Spanish and Chinese, they will be better prepared for the future world.

Chris Kok is a senior political science major and columnist for the Daily Kent Stater. Contact him at [email protected].