Single Sisters Speak Out

The Modern Life of the Single Sister

Call It What You Want October 20, 2009

Filed under: Single Sisters On... — cuzzo @ 10:29 pm

Forgive me but I was a little heated when I learned that there’s going to be an all Spanish G.E.D. exam. I am one of those people that feels that people living in America should speak English. Not speak it perfectly but at least have a good enough understanding of it to be able to communicate. I don’t expect to begin living in France and never learn a lick of French.

I do believe in the advancement of all people in America…but how far can you go if you don’t even know English? On another note…isn’t English a subject on the regular G.E.D. exam? So, they are just going to do away with the subject altogether? Aye, aye, aye. *shakes head*

Call me a bigot, prejudice, racist, whatever you want…but I had an experience at a Walmart in Miami asking an associate which aisle I could find something in and his reply was “My English no good.” What the hell are you doing working here then?!?!


14 Responses to “Call It What You Want”

  1. I do think everyone who lives in the US needs to speak English. but what’s crazy is when I just looked up our official language, I found info that said we didn’t have one. SMH

  2. @cuzzo: wait. you’re in Miami and surprised that people don’t speakadaenglish? really? why? a better question would probably be asked of Walmart. Why are you hiring someone who doesn’t speakadaenglish. they’d probably be a bit reluctant to tell you “because we pay them small wages and little benefits and that Americans see this work as “beneath” them”.

    and if you decided to live in france would you do so only after learning french or would you go knowing that someone, anyone will help you out. what if walmart dude was only here for like four months. is he expected to know english in that time. if we went to mexico, would we know spanish in that amount of time?

    even english is a foreign language in the sense that it isn’t what the first American’s spoke. American isn’t a language. Do the native American’s expect us to speak their language?

    i don’t think you’re racist, a bigot or prejudice . . . i think you’re simply . . . American.

    America has this notion that everyone should speak english and we even look down on people who speak two languages and one of them (english) perhaps not so well (dude spoke english in Walmart . . . enough to communicate that his english wasn’t very good. . . could we do that in french)?

    As for the GED, what do we say when Latino persons are the majority in our nation (soon to happen . . . 50% of population growth since 2000 is of Latino descent).

    Perhaps we are the ones who need to consider the idea that being bilingual should be commonplace.

  3. “Perhaps we are the ones who need to consider the idea that being bilingual should be commonplace.”

    @Rob: It CAN”T be a requirement, then I wouldn’t have an advantage by being bilingual. lol

    (I’m not yet but I am trying!!!)

  4. @nikki: right, one of my good friends is mexican and i’m so jealous everytime i hear him on the phone moving seamlessly between spanish and english. with all my education i feel stupid like dang, dude can literally go anywhere in the world and get by.

  5. @Rob: We went to a mexican restaurant last night and I wish I could understand them easier… I want to practice and talk to some but I don’t want to offend them! lol

    Not only can your friend go anywhere, but some jobs will pay you more if you know both!!!

  6. See this doesn’t really bother me. I think the root of this tension (which sounds very conservative republican to me) is based on fear. Like maybe latinos would come over here and turn this country into something unrecognizable ..maybe like a little South America or Mexico. LOL

    But hey..New York, DC and Miami have pockets that look like little Ethiopia, Little Havana, Little Nigeria, Little Haiti, Little Jamaica, Little PR, Little DR..i could go on.

    Im fascinated when other immigrants or people with parents of non American heritage, wanna diss other immigrants. But thats the American way. At the turn of last century thats what made other immigrants America..The Irish, Polish etc..once hated could turn their rage on a group that EVERYONE hated and they could bond…who was this group?


    A little history could put some of this in perspective. Its not really cool to me to make latinos the new hated minority.

  7. LP Says:

    Well, in France French is the OFFICIAL language.

    The United States does not have an official language since people from several countries congregated here at the same time… It just so happens that English was the MOST common language…

    Now, you can be mad at that, but you can’t be mad at the people who are taking advantage of this little artifact. Instead of getting p!ssed off (it raises blood pressure), you can write to your congressman and start a grassroot group or something. In other words, get involved… or bear the consequences of your inactions.

    p.s: I have no point of view on the situation one way or the other. I am just speaking as a person who would like people to stop complaining and use the resources they have in their possession to exact a change.

  8. LP Says:

    Its not really cool to me to make latinos the new hated minority.

    Word.Life. (Sorry for my VSB talk. :))

  9. Lynnette Says:

    I had an uncle travel to ethiopia, a cousin study abroad in germany, an aunt who lives in canada, and friends and family who have been to countless other places around the world. And the truth of the matter is, in most places worldwide, the citizens of those countries know english and are able to assist you as a tourist or visitor. Americans seem to not want to be as flexible in helping other people adjust and are used to being the center of the universe. In many places around the world, children learn english in school. On my trip to Puerto Rico I went to a Burger King. I didnt even attempt to try spanish. It was as if, unconsciously, I figured the cashier would/should/better know what I’m saying. Then I proceeded to talk to my friend in English. It wasn’t until I was home that I realized how rude I had been. I only recognized my faults when i realized this is what people from other countries do to us all the time (nail shop, dominican salon, etc). Needless to say, the cashier spoke english and she said it was mandated they learn it in school.

    Another point; where my aunt lives in Canada people speak both french and english, and she’s fluent in both. I think its so cool!

  10. Shannon Says:

    After spending a lot of time in Brazil not knowing Portuguese, I really have a new appreciation for anyone learning a new language.

    Granted I’m making effort to learn the language, but it will take me a few years to speak before I butcher the language. If people weren’t nice enough to encourage me, I would have given up a long time ago.

    Does that mean I shouldn’t travel or attempt to live in another country? Me thinks not. Just try being a weeeee bit more open minded. We live in a global world.

    And ditto to everything Comeback Girl said.

  11. ashbunnie Says:

    Ok, living in America, Learning English should number one on every foreigners list.

    Working for an Adult Ed/GED program, scheduling people to take the test in either English, Spanish, or French, I didn’t understand the concept of an American test in another language. But my mother explained to me (a GED & ESL teacher), that they can learn to speak it but understanding it when it’s written is totally different. They will learn to speak English and maybe even become conversational. But the test they wont understand because English writing is a lot different than writing in their native language. But I see your point.

    English isn’t a subject on the test *it’s called Language Arts because they don’t grade based on grammar just your comprehension of what you’ve read*

  12. Erin Says:

    I can understand on so many levels. I work in banking and it is quite frustrating to wait on customers that can barely speak English. Communicating with them is just too damn difficult.

    In recent years I have noticed that certain places ( Quiznos and Dunkin Donuts) are being staffed/owned by all foreigners that can barely understand English and have a hard time placing your order.

    I think the US is just too damn accommodating sometimes.

  13. experienceaurie Says:

    I remember that my Europe trip back in ’98 to 7 countries was amazing easy because of the tolerance and acceptance of not having an inflexibility to English visitors. From Frankfurt to Amsterdam…from Innsbruck to Annecy, the only trouble I had was keeping track of all the difference currencies and exchange rates. Thanks to the Euro, now even that will be simpler the next time I visit.

    I think that language is one of the only areas where America is not very accommodating at all. We do so much as a nation with our ideals and visions (regardless of the ambiguities and hypocrisies), but language surely isn’t on the agenda.

  14. Tea Says:

    Wheeeeeew, the point was missed altogether in post except by one, someone who works in the profession. She didn’t say that we should kick out all those who don’t speak English, what she stated was that we shouldn’t accommodate them by testing in Spanish.

    Being a recruiter for a GED Academy, I understand what ashbunnie is stating, the only problem is that we’re still teaching them to be able to rely on their Spanish grammatical skills…which seems to be an issue at the ESL level. Where if they want to function in a society where speaking English is the “common” language, then when testing for a degree that states that you are capable to comprehend in all of these facets, that the tester should actually fully comprehend the English language.

    And this issue far surpasses the GED, the same goes for government assistance funded by taxpayers. I’m in Florida and I’ve been a social worker, and I’m here to tell you, that alot of Spanish immigrants don’t begin to bother with learning the language b/c they know that the government will assist them.

    If the language arts portion of the test is in Spanish, then what exactly are they learning…how to speak grammatically speak English in Spanish, because it’s still written grammatically in Spanish.

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