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President Theodore Roosevelt once said, “We have one language here, and that is the English language, and we intend to see that the crucible turns our people out as Americans.”

All that has changed since TR’s day. A century ago, it was the ability to communicate in English which enabled the melting-pot forge one nation out of millions of immigrants from all over the world. Sadly it is the non-adherence to that “one language” philosophy, which
removes the single most empowering tool that legal immigrants have to create opportunities in their new country, the knowledge of English.

You may remember that last  July the President said that “instead of worrying about whether immigrants can learn English,” Americans “need to make sure your child can speak Spanish.” But Americans strongly disagree.

According to a news Rasmussen poll, 83% of Americans place a higher priority on encouraging immigrants to speak English as their primary language. Just 13% take the opposite view and say it is more important for Americans to learn other languages. 

 An even greater percentage, 87% favor making English the nation’s official language. This is the highest level of support yet but in line with what voters have been saying for several years (in 2006 it was 86%). Just nine percent  disagree

Eighty-three percent say a company doing business in this country should be allowed to require its employees to speak English, only 11% say companies should not be permitted to require their employees to speak English on the job.

Should there be a legislative move toward requiring people to learn English there will be an outcry from liberals and progressives that this is a racist move. But Americans disagree, only 10% of Americans say requiring people to speak English is a form of racism or bigotry. eighty-four percent disagree.

The findings come at a time when President Obama and major Hispanic groups, among others, are protesting Arizona’s new law empowering local police to stop those they suspect of being illegal immigrants. Despite national protests and threats of boycotting Arizona, 59% of U.S. voters continue to support the state law, which Arizona officials say is necessary because the federal government is not doing its job to halt illegal immigration. Fifty percent (50%), in fact, have an unfavorable opinion of those who protested the law in marches and rallies two weekends ago.

Making English the official language of the United States is supported across  all demographic groups.

  • Ninety-five percent (95%) of those who work in the private sector think companies should be allowed to require their employees to speak English on the job, a view shared by just 69% of government employees.
  • Over 80% of whites, blacks and those of other racial and ethnic backgrounds agree that requiring people to speak English is not a form of racism or bigotry. These groups also agree by similar percentages that such a requirement is not a limit on free speech in this country. 

I happen to be the grandchild of Immigrants. They came to this country over a hundred years ago speaking Russian and Yiddish. They were proud of their new home and quickly learned English, not as a matter of pride, but because they knew that to get ahead in this country they had to speak the language.  Russian was quickly forgotten and Yiddish was saved for…well as the old saying goes, “If you have nothing nice to say, say it in Yiddish.”

    Until recent years, most people who came over to this country quickly learned the language, that’s why most Americans understand the need to make English the official language. Of course, this need ignored by the party in power, if you agree please leave a comment below. If you disagree, press 1 for Russian, press 2 for Yiddish….

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