Do you have adblock enabled?
 
If you can read this, either the style sheet didn't load or you have an older browser that doesn't support style sheets. Try clearing your browser cache and refreshing the page.

(Lowell Sun Online)   Xenophobia out of control: school committee member files motion to remove Spanish-language emergency exit signs from high school   (lowellsun.com ) divider line
    More: Asinine  
•       •       •

353 clicks; posted to Politics » on 06 May 2006 at 5:48 PM (10 years ago)   |   Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



98 Comments   (+0 »)
   

Archived thread

First | « | 1 | 2 | » | Last | Show all
 
2006-05-06 06:23:04 PM  
Jpreon

Well, you didn't answer my question in the least, but, you know, that's cool.

We're a nation of immigrants who encourage immigration. If a 40 year old latin male arrives here, it's going to be super hard for him to learn English-- learning other languages as an adult is hard for everyone, impossible for some people.

If there's a lot of spanish speakers in an area either in the process of learning english or who aren't going to be able to, what the hell is wrong with putting up emergency signs in spanish, printing forms in spanish, etc?
 
2006-05-06 06:24:56 PM  
General Specific

The party of fiscal responsibility. "Let's spend money to remove what's already there! That'll show 'em."


Bears repeating.
 
2006-05-06 06:25:49 PM  
Seems like a good slogan for the minute men:
"Learn English or die in a fire!"
 
2006-05-06 06:26:42 PM  
Chameleon

I said it was understandable, because the language of business is English. If you want to compete in business, English is good to know. If you refuse to learn it, that is your choice, but you may be excluded or exempted from business for it. Either way, it is your choice.
 
2006-05-06 06:31:35 PM  
What I'm trying to point out here is the hypocricy of your arguements. Either you think that "you leanr one language to conduct business and government" or you don't. If you do, then all business and signage in the Philippenes should be in Tagalog. If not, then what the hell is the problem with exit signs in a second language? It's not like they're only going to be in Spanish.
 
2006-05-06 06:32:23 PM  
Obdicut

It's simple. If you cater to one group, you have to cater to all. Do you know how ethnic groups there are in Los Angeles. Do we have to posts signs in every language used? Or do we post just Spanish, and effectively ignore other groups? How long until Filipinos say we are discouraging them and ignoring them by not posting their language? How long until it discrimination not to cater a small ethnic groups language?
 
2006-05-06 06:33:28 PM  
jpbreon- do you speak spanish?
 
2006-05-06 06:37:27 PM  
SeekerRex

I can understand it well enough. Good enough to ask basic questions and hold simple conversations.

Chameleon

It's about context. Filipinos encourage learning the language of business by teaching it in school. They do it so their students have a chance to study abroad and get good jobs. In America, we already do speak the language of business, and while I applaud bilingual folks, we need to make sure everyone can speak a common language first.
 
2006-05-06 06:43:41 PM  
jpbreon: It's simple. If you cater to one group, you have to cater to all. Do you know how ethnic groups there are in Los Angeles. Do we have to posts signs in every language used? Or do we post just Spanish, and effectively ignore other groups? How long until Filipinos say we are discouraging them and ignoring them by not posting their language? How long until it discrimination not to cater a small ethnic groups language?

I don't know about where you come from, but I somehow doubt the Filipino population is larger than the Spanish speaking community...
 
2006-05-06 06:46:15 PM  
jpbreon: we need to make sure everyone can speak a common language first.

Is that why most people study Spanish in high School?

Seriously, I don't understand what the big deal is about trying to meet these people halfway. The Hispanic immigrants aren't just going to go away...
 
2006-05-06 06:47:56 PM  
FeedTheCollapse

Well, I come from Los Angeles, and the Hispanic population in the majority, followed by whites, then Asians, then Filipinos and various other groups. However, I grew up in a Filipino neighborhood. Whites were the 4th largest minority group. Everyone knew how to speak English, but naturally, many people spoke other languages out of class/at lunch/ect.
 
2006-05-06 06:48:14 PM  
Jpreon

You don't have to cater to everyone. You can reasonably cater to the larger groups.

It's not about who complains, it's about, in this case, trying to save lives.

I submit that it's a good idea to try to save lives. Putting up signs for large elments of the population that they can actually understand helps save lives. That's good.
 
2006-05-06 07:02:16 PM  
jpbreon: I grew up in a Filipino neighborhood. Whites were the 4th largest minority group. Everyone knew how to speak English

If you grew up in a Filipino neighborhood in L.A., I doubt everyone could speak English.
 
2006-05-06 07:02:34 PM  
Feed the collapse. So you contend it is easier for 75% of the population to learn Spanish than it is for 12.5% of it or so to learn English?
 
2006-05-06 07:04:21 PM  
Croooow!

They do. They want to succeed, and work very hard. Although, I will give you that my fiance could not speak English until she went to pre-school. Then she learned english in around a week. Young minds. Then again, she could not read at that point yet.
 
2006-05-06 07:05:41 PM  
Obdicut

The best method is to use univerally accepted exit signs. Like the green signs with a man running and an arrow. No one needs to be able to read to understand that.
 
2006-05-06 07:09:49 PM  
In Chicago, their are signs in Polish in the Polish neighborhood. There are signs in Chinese in Chinatown.

Why can't we just practice some common sense and put signs up in the languages that a large groups of people in the area speak. This seems like a stupid thing to have a problem with.
 
2006-05-06 07:11:59 PM  
Ah, just muere en un incendio.
 
2006-05-06 07:15:42 PM  
jpbreon

Hint: Unless you're going to Hong Kong, it would probably be better to learn Mandarin.
 
2006-05-06 07:19:21 PM  
AuntNotAnt

Thanks, I'm sure if the person who asked me the question was more specific, I could give a more specific answer. But what dialect? There are many.
 
2006-05-06 07:19:56 PM  
Um...kay...

"EXIT". Remember what the farking letters look like if you must.

Or just figure it out based on context - the big green electric signs that point toward the outside doors are exit signs.
 
2006-05-06 07:25:36 PM  
My father immigrated here from the Basque country. When we went back to visit his family, I noticed that all of the signs were in french and basque on the french side of the border, and spanish and basque on the spanish side of the border.

The basque were there first, just as the spanish resided in California before it became America....thus explaining why everything has Spanish names (Los Angeles, Santa Anita....and so on). I'm Capain Obviousette!

Point is, it is appropriate to have signage that caters to the majority of the residing population. Just go to any Chinatown located in any of our major cities.

I also think that it is important to encourage our citizens to be multilingual in our increasingly global economy. My dad speaks four languages, basque, freanch, spanish, and english, and he only went to school up to the 6th grade. My french cousins shame my brothers and me. They were required to be fluent and test out of high school in two foreign languages in order to pass.

Our school system sucks as far as preparing us to effectivly communicate with outside cultures in their own language, which they value. The more we are exposed to other languages, the more likely we'll be able to escape a burning building in Spain, Mexico, Argentina.....
 
2006-05-06 07:29:09 PM  
jpbreon
Yes, which is why I live in Los Angeles. No cultural diversity here, just a bunch of white people. Furthermore, I am engaged to a Filipino girl, and I speak Tagalog. Anecdotal with the furthermore, but if you'd like, I could direct you to my MySpace account to verify, you oaf.


Some of my best friends are black people!!
 
2006-05-06 07:32:38 PM  
Thus the anecdotal reference and offer to verify it, you drooling moron.
 
2006-05-06 07:36:43 PM  
BooBoo KittyFark

All well and good if you go to Argentina or wherever, but what if you don't? Can you forcefully integrate someone? A farmer in Wyoming would have little reason to learn Japanese. I am all for multilingualism, but I don't see why a national language for business and government is a bad thing.
 
2006-05-06 07:37:55 PM  
jpbreon

I am pretty sure this thread is proof positive you are the only moron around here. Hilarious watching you get biatchslapped around by everyone, though.

For future reference, I am not sure in what universe having a Filipino fiance proves that you like Mexicans.
 
2006-05-06 07:43:08 PM  
cruci fiction

Yes, because you make such powerful arguements like "I have friends that are black!!!1!1!". I never claimed to dislike nor like Mexicans, you made that up to vindicate your anger that I was challenging the status quo. I asked for rationality and you popped the race card on your very Boobies to me. You haven't said a damn thing backed by reason, you HAVE race carded me, brough up a cliche, and called me a name. Bravo.
 
2006-05-06 08:04:42 PM  
jpbreon: All well and good if you go to Argentina or wherever, but what if you don't? Can you forcefully integrate someone? A farmer in Wyoming would have little reason to learn Japanese. I am all for multilingualism, but I don't see why a national language for business and government is a bad thing.

Even if you do not ever travel to a foreign country, I believe that learning languages other then english has many benefits. A farmer in Wyoming is quite likely to hire farmhands that speak spanish. My father is a dairyman and has practically an entirely mexican population in his employ, all in which he ensures all have green cards. Speaking spanish has helped him communicate effectively with them and has earned their respect.

A national language for business and government is a fine thing, but that does not, by any stretch of the imagination, negate the importance of multilingualism. In fact, here multilingualism is even more important. Our global economy is quickly erasing borders as far as businesses are concerned. Even small businesses benefit from being able to export/import goods from another country. And it goes without saying that the government definately has to deal with foreign countries, don't 'cha think?
 
2006-05-06 08:06:55 PM  
BooBoo KittyFark

I would encourage multilingualism, but I would not mandate it. English should be used in business and government to ensure continuity and minimize confusion. Learning another language would be completely up to each individual, but you are right, it should be encouraged.
 
2006-05-06 08:22:54 PM  
jpbreon: I would encourage multilingualism, but I would not mandate it. English should be used in business and government to ensure continuity and minimize confusion. Learning another language would be completely up to each individual, but you are right, it should be encouraged.


English is used in government and in business here in America. There are no laws that have been written in Spanish, right? As for business, they are free to cater to any population they deem will benefit their business the most. If that population is latino or chinese, they have every right to conduct their business in the language of the customers they service. It's the american way!

I believe that the learning of foreign language should be mandatory. In europe, they are required to pass exams proving their mastery of two languages in order to graduate from high school. English is mandatory, and the study of it begins at an early age. The second language is chosen by the student, it can be spanish, german, italian, french, japanese, russian, or mandarin. It opens up an incredible array of options for these young adults as far as career oportunities.

For those who choose careers in which the use of another language is unnecessary, they are at least enriched with the knowlege of a culture other than their own, making them more well rounded individuals.
 
2006-05-06 08:25:34 PM  
rivetboy [TotalFark]
SpinnyNuNu
What happens when there's a fire after hours and the Spanish-speaking janitor dies in the fire not being able to read the "English-only" signs that this guy mandated?

They go down to the Home Depot parking lot and hire another one?


LOL!!!
not like there is a shortage of them
 
2006-05-06 08:39:43 PM  
SeekerRex

I see your point. Once, meaning 1 & once, meaning 11 is a mistake that could have easily been avoided by printing a 1 or 11 next to the word, no? Please excuse my ignorance of the spanish language, but would the word for exit be as easily confused?

I think we really need to focus on teaching these people English prior to any other education. Put math, science, & everything else on the backburner for a year & teach them to communicate. Living in AZ myself I am surrounded by people that speak only spanish. I've seen it cause a lot of confusion in stores & other everyday situations. IMHO, it is a hinderance to them when it comes to getting beyond the stereotype of being nothing but dish washers, landscapers, & maids. Being able to communicate is an important part of getting themselves assimilated & out of poverty.

RandomExcess

I can see this guys frustration to an extent. This is the United States & even though we don't "legally" have an official language, the bulk of us speak english. Have we become a nation that requires a law to define the way we comunicate on a daily basis? I sure hope not. The signs are there. Fine. Leave 'em. But we can't keep printing things in foreign languages for everyone all the time. An example. When I lived in Mpls there was a big stink about printing the drivers lic exams in spanish, somolian, & hmong to make it easier for people of those nationalities (& there are a lot of them there) to pass their exams. The problems they ran into afterwards were all the road signs are in english. These people were getting lost & into accidents because they could not read the basic road signs. This, of course, enhanced the stereotype that immigrants can't drive. As I stated above, teaching these people englsih should be our #1 priority. Once they have that, they will have a much easier time of getting ahead everywhere from furthering their education to the job market.
 
2006-05-06 08:53:45 PM  
Lookup signage. ADA signs are all in braille and use internationally reconized symbols. The spainish part really shouldn't be necessary, nor should english.

Yeah it's that dude running towards a doorway with a flame behind him.

\the more you know
 
2006-05-06 09:05:42 PM  
This is a good intent, but very, very bad example. Starting with (or ever touching) emergency signs is a very, very bad way to go at it
 
2006-05-06 09:19:13 PM  
BobtheFascist: SeekerRex

I see your point. Once, meaning 1 & once, meaning 11 is a mistake that could have easily been avoided by printing a 1 or 11 next to the word, no? Please excuse my ignorance of the spanish language, but would the word for exit be as easily confused?


It wouldnt be confused with anything in Spanish, but it looks nothing like the word "Salida" which is the spanish word for exit. If you dont speak english, and you see the word Exit, why would you assume that it means exit and not bathroom? Pretty much I think a lot of people take for granted that other people speak our language, my wife's english is not perfect but she passed the college placement test easily.

As for your point on teaching english only, that is kind of difficult to do. If a kid comes from a developed country where he had a decent education (not cuba for example) a kid would understand the concepts of science math and history or geography. I think that teaching them those classes in english helps them relate concepts together.

And another thing I have seen in schools is that they have what they call BCC classes which are bilingual where you read and talk in english, and if necessary you explain in spanish. They tend to be less afraid to read in class because they know that everybody around them reads poorly so they learn easier. It's a pain in the butt to sub that class like I did, and I personally wouldnt want to teach a class like that (I find kids who just moved from another country harbor a lot of resentment and have a "in my country we did this" attitude) but I think there is a place for it and it is a good environment for them to learn english and the material at teh same time.
 
2006-05-06 10:07:14 PM  
jpbreon: my fiance learned to speak English in a week.

I mean, I know we're not supposed to take things out of context, but that is just a useless statement.

The truth is, if we were to make a "universal language" as you say, the best choice would be FAR from English, as Mandarin is the most widely spoken language in the world (sorry, can't do html, but I did look it up).
 
2006-05-06 10:28:10 PM  
If you put the Spanish word for exit, 'salida', on doors, white people might think it says 'salad' and think they'll get a tasty snack, and get mad when there's no salad behind the door.
 
2006-05-06 10:47:42 PM  
First off, I LEARNED spanish in middle and highschool, between the ages of 12-16. I'm an eglish-minded person with a solid grasp of grammar and diction and after 4years of public education (and 2 years in college) I can barely hold a conversation in spanish. Add some gesturing and shouting and I can make it through.

So you're suggesting a program run by a government that hates immigration to help teach people in their 30's, 40's and 50's how to speak english, when we all know the toughest time to learn languages is later in life?

I know you're not suggesting that the poor and economically unsound individuals crossing our borders everyday put a large amount of their legally/illegally obtained salaries towards learning english on their own?

It's great that you're willing to learn the language of another culture before going to that country, and that some countries facilitate learning multiple languages, but the US DOES NOT.

There are very few courses in the public education system to help these people learn english. There are probably no courses in mexico to learn english for people that come from their particular economic stratus.

All that's being said is that these people need to learn english, but this anti-immigration stance means we're pulling out all the courses and funding for programs that would provide those skills because we're afraid it's encouragement to jump the border.
 
2006-05-07 03:05:59 AM  
I don't see how the language on the sign would matter too much anyways. Alot of kids can't even read PERIOD.

/In case of emergency, no child should be left behind.
//Unless they are brown...ish.
 
2006-05-07 08:22:32 AM  
So they want immigrants to die in a fire, right?
 
2006-05-07 10:54:56 AM  
they should put "not the exit" in spanish on these signs if they REALLY want to do what i think they're trying to do.

which is, obv, to fark the immigrants.
 
2006-05-07 01:46:48 PM  
here in Dallas they are already creating schools where the entire student body is hispanic so they can have their classes in spanish. What the hell is that? When I was stationed in Puerto Rico I learned Spanish so I could study in the local university and it opened up the people and the culture to me. You want to live in ANY country, learn the primary language! COMMON SENSE!
 
2006-05-07 02:26:38 PM  
smert: here in Dallas they are already creating schools where the entire student body is hispanic so they can have their classes in spanish. What the hell is that?

It's history, actually. Early in the previous century there were schools that taught only in German in the upper Midwest, and nobody gave a flying fark about that. Funny, how it's teh horrificableness now.
 
2006-05-07 07:31:12 PM  
"I think by taking a stand at Greater Lowell we're making it clear that English is the official language. If we have one additional language on a sign, everybody is going to want signs," Deeb said.

And this guy is a School Committee Member? What a maroon!
 
2006-05-07 11:23:04 PM  
FarkMeBlind - well I would say that it is a problem when a DISD representative suggested we need to hire illegal aliens to teach in these schools. Funny, we have a lot of problems with pedophiles and we are all about screening teachers but then we have a member of the board suggesting that we hire people whom don't have appropriate paperwork allowing a background check. Aside from that telling public school teachers that they are going to lose their job because they don't speak spanish? But I guess you don't really think that is a problem either.

In the US today English is necesary to get ahead. By accomadating people to keep their language we create virtual ghettos. And "guest worker program"? That is nothing more than legalized slavery. Telling someone that they can only work in some crap job? When have we ever had a law that told people that they have to work in a crap job?
 
2006-05-08 08:21:07 AM  
image.abcaz.co.uk

If they just used these then we wouldn't be having this debate.
 
2006-05-08 01:01:14 PM  
jpbreon: my fiance learned to speak English in a week.

...and I learned to kiss French in a matter of minutes. Irrelevant.
The real point here that you're all missing is the assumption that the students can read
... anything
... at all
... in any language
 
2006-05-10 12:58:27 AM  
Muere en un fuego.
 
Displayed 48 of 98 comments

First | « | 1 | 2 | » | Last | Show all



This thread is archived, and closed to new comments.

Continue Farking
Submit a Link »
On Twitter






In Other Media


  1. Links are submitted by members of the Fark community.

  2. When community members submit a link, they also write a custom headline for the story.

  3. Other Farkers comment on the links. This is the number of comments. Click here to read them.

  4. Click here to submit a link.

Report