Because Americans all learned French when it was the language of opportunity

Puerto Rican statehood, which will come up for a vote in November, polls rather well. And this is one of those issues that’s been so talked about (in PR) that I’m sure people have already made up their minds and movement from those numbers will have more to do with turnout than anything else.

But Republicans are going to try to make that number move down, though. After saying that English is the official language and has to be “universally” used in new states (not true), Santorum clarified by saying that people could still speak Spanish, but that “everyone would have a proficiency in English.”

Romney said that he wants young people to be bilingual, but that they would “particularly” learn English. Is any geographically-defined population actually bilingual? Canada is a bilingual country, but that just means that English speakers take French in high school and vice versa.

Learning another language isn’t something everyone is able to do or wants to do. There can’t be a policy that expects everyone to be bilingual, especially when chances to speak English will be limited. The only way to get everyone to speak English would be a policy to eliminate Spanish (ban it in schools, workplace, etc.).

I wonder how the numbers will move if people think that a vote for statehood means if Republicans keep this up. But they’re not likely to talk about this issue anymore anyway.


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