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Designating English as the official Language of the United States

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Designating English as the Official Language of the United States




Designating English as the Official Language of the United States

America has had many riots in about race, drafts, anti-war protests, and alcohol rebellion. Could a language riot be next? At the current time there is no official language designated for the United States. Should English be the official language of our country? The United States is thought to be an English speaking country but the Official language needs to be a distinguishing fact for many reasons. The voters are widely divided claiming the United States should stay language-less, while there are others that think it should be Spanish or multilingualism. There are many viewpoints on this topic politically and non-politically with citizens and immigrants from various backgrounds. The complications of this decision show some of the many viewpoints. Several aspects concerning English as the official language of the United States include some financial ramifications and possible discriminative aspects of the choice of English as the official language of the United States.

With a demand to uphold standardization in government business practices in one language, and keep a uniform language rule for naturalization that all citizens must read generally in English and understand the Constitution of the United States and laws of this land. (Thomas, 2005) State legislators, government officials, and many others believe America can benefit with the elimination of printing materials in Multilanguage's and Language interpretations. The printing in Multilanguage's and translators cost the taxpayers millions of dollars each year. With the current influxes of immigrant's this cost will rise to billions.

Thirty-one states have already passed this legislation, with Oklahoma being the latest state to do so on November 02, 2010. The effects are official state government businesses will now be conducted only in English, voting ballots, driver license exams, state laws, regulations, programs, and policies will now only be in the English language. The benefits are elimination of printing materials in Multilanguage's and Language interpretations in official state government speaking engagements thus reducing taxes previously spent on printing costs and the cost of language interpreters. The exceptions are permitting the use of languages other than English for such things as public health and safety services, judicial proceedings, foreign language instruction, and the promotion of tourism. (U.S. English, 2009) says, "The melting pot works-because we have a common language."

The states with a designated official English language are suffering no adverse consequences thus far, however the federal government has warned states could lose federal funding if an agency is found in violation of Title VI (U.S. English, 2009). The importance of public safety information, public health information, safety procedures on the job, and bilingual education opportunities stay safeguarded with Title VI.

The viewpoints of this topic are strong; many consider this topic as racial discrimination of immigrant's civil rights. In 1963, when President Kennedy submitted Title VI for congressional consideration, he said, "simple justice requires that the federal government not subsidize any policies that encourage, entrench, or result in discrimination" (Richey W, 2001) Title VI: Prevents discrimination by government agencies that receive federal funding. If an agency is found in violation of Title VI, that agency can lose its federal funding.

On a national level these are the most recent spoken languages recorded in the United States 2009 census in our multilingual society: English 82.1%, Spanish 10.7%, other Indo-European 3.8%, Asian and Pacific island 2.7%, other 0.7% (2000 census) (United States, 2009). Spanish is the second most spoken language in the United States; therefore, the Hispanic population will be the most affected part of American society. It should be noted that most of the languages spoken aside from English are in the coastal and southern Border States. These regions of the United States would be impacted the most with English language as the official designated language.

The United States is the melting pot, the assimilation of immigrants to the United States. The supposed perseverance is to recognize our differences and cultures, but create unity. Designating English as the official language of the United Stated is a concept judged to have further unity with immigrants. There is considerable deliberation about adopting English as The Official Language of the United States on matters of assimilation, immigrants should learn English, soon after arrival, or many never will (Wendy Koch, 2006). Critics arguably believe leaving this country with no official language will leave immigrants to depend on the government for multilingualism and continue being separate, not united with the country.

Much of this information is located within the Library of Congress, Justice Department, and in the Ashford University Library. Useful articles, journals, and court cases are found debating discrimination issues. Supporting documents for H.R. 977 English Language Unity Act 2009 (Thomas, 2005) are located through this source and many others.

Another part of this argument pertains to Limited English Proficiency individual's entitlement to assorted language assistance and services costing the taxpayers. For this reason, designating English as the official language of the United States could be a necessary vehicle to learn the English language, encourage English proficiency, and end the need for further assistance from this program.

Research is shows third generation immigrants cannot speak in their mother tongue, whereas second generations immigrants are bilingual most often, and first generation immigrants only speak in their mother tongue (Alba R, Logan J. 2002). First generation and second generation immigrants tend to segregate, Segregation theorists argue, "Immigrants cluster together when they have cultural characteristics in common with each other (such as language) that differ from the characteristics of the population as a whole. Perhaps the most common theory of immigrant ghettos is that these concentrations occur



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