Francisco Chronicle headline read:
in state speak other than English at home."
very disturbing when 1 in 5 people is not communicating
in the common language,` said
Victor Davis Hanson, a
fellow at the
The Chron piece then allows a second opinion:
" `It`s not that immigrants don`t want to integrate—it`s that they need more opportunities to learn English,` said Jin Sook Lee, an assistant professor of education at UC Santa Barbara, who remembers the oversubscribed English-as-a-second-language classes she used to teach at community college.
also doesn`t believe
" `The fact that people speak a different language in their homes is one of the most untapped resources in our country," Lee said. "With globalization in economics and politics, we need language competence. These speakers have a great potential to fill out this language gap in our society.` "
And that is not going to be simple:
Whoa, Dr. Rumberger. As I recall over 30 million Californians are not immigrants! But at least the article allows its readers to think for themselves as how extremely off the wall that "totally dependent" view is.
non-immigrant friends and business associates are keenly
worried by this fact reported by Hendricks:
But of course all
Americans who aren`t brain dead realize that the
It is not
surprising at all that,
the direction is toward more settled immigrants and a
second generation and increasing language proficiency
among the foreign-born," [said
Michael Fix, co-director of the
National Center for Immigrant Integration Policy at
the Migration Policy Institute in Washington, D.C.]
"The share of
people who speak Spanish at home who speak English as
well has risen over time. So instead of the worrisome
story about (a lack of) cohesion, there`s a positive
story here. ... The share of new immigrant arrivals in
A bit of a Pollyanna, I think, Mr. Fix. As Roy Beck, President of NumbersUSA has noted, the period of 1925 to 1965 was the Golden Age of US Immigration, when an average of under 200,000 newcomers per year could be integrated comfortably into American life. The millions of legal and illegal aliens here now so far surpasses that era that cultural integration has reached crisis proportions.
This article notes the dilemma of bilingual instruction and the importance of making English an urgent priority—although obviously not enough of a priority:
Under the bold subheading, "Essential skill," the article concludes with a highly sensible exposition of the language issue.
"`Learning English is an essential skill for immigrants and their children, both for their personal success and for the good of the nation,` said Tomás Jiménez, an Irvine Fellow at the New America Foundation, a nonpartisan public policy think tank.
borrow a non-English phrase, English is the lingua
franca of the
Hey, Professor, "additive" implies non-primary.
But Jimenez does understand that " `Government could do more to make English classes available to adults and help them integrate into society`.....He pointed to Santa Clara County`s Office of Human Relations, which promotes citizenship, English and leadership among immigrants, as a good example."
(Congratulate Chronicle`s Hendricks)
Donald A. Collins [email him], is a freelance writer living in Washington DC and a former long time member of the board of FAIR, the Federation for American Immigration Reform. His views are his own.