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(Atlanta Journal Constitution)   Man says anybody who works for him must speak English or else they get fired   ( divider line
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18062 clicks; posted to Main » on 11 Dec 2006 at 7:56 AM (10 years ago)   |   Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»

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2006-12-11 10:05:14 AM  
dallashockey69 [TotalFark]

who are these immigrants refusing to learn english? how ignorant of people to think that. you are the people who make the world hate us.

Well, when I have to press 1 for English and when I go to the ATM and have to choose a language, and when things I buy are printed in at least two languages, that says to me that there are people here who don't know English. Duh.
2006-12-11 10:07:25 AM  
Pocket Ninja: A more interesting question concerns why you didn't bother to find out about what the other members in your group were working on.

I knew what they were working on. They were working on VHDL-AMS source code generation algorithms, which I know absolutely nothing about. Of course, making a hash table was only one part of that problem. I had no idea whether they were discussing hash tables or principles of VHDL-AMS code generation. For that matter, I didn't even know if it was technical. They could have been discussing politics, for all I knew.

Your solution suggests that every time someone is speaking in a foreign language, I should stop whatever I'm doing and ask them what they are talking about. Why every time? I don't speak their language, so I don't know which time is appropriate. The better solution would have been for them to ask, "Does anybody know how to make a hash table in Python?"

I am happy to help anybody who asks for assistance, but it is not my responsibility to know instinctively when my peers are having problems.
2006-12-11 10:07:32 AM  
I think the point of this guy is that the people knew how to speak english. They chose NOT to because they are A) More comfortable speaking their native language B) they like to bad mouth people without the people knowing.
2006-12-11 10:08:11 AM  

who is refusing to learn english? because you have to press one for english that means they are refusing to learn?

nevermind. you are too ignorant to debate this matter with.
2006-12-11 10:08:54 AM  
racist pricks

The English language is not a race, nor is it in any way restricted by race.

/There shoud be a word similar to "Godwin" about people who call something racist without turning their brain on first
2006-12-11 10:09:03 AM  
"English motherfarker! Do you speak it?!"
2006-12-11 10:09:31 AM  
Am I the only one who read "Adele Northrup doesn't let her Mexican-born cleaning lady speak Spanish on the jorb" in that first sentence.

No I caught that too, hence the shenannigans.
2006-12-11 10:09:36 AM  
NSFW much, Xerxes99?
2006-12-11 10:09:50 AM  

the people behind this movement are all white people. its a racist agenda.
2006-12-11 10:11:37 AM  
In my military unit we have a similar problem.....with a large hispanic population they use spanish to saythings so the rest of us don't know what they are saying. (note not 100% of the time) but they take issue others speak in German or other languages. Somehow that is out of bounds.....I guess only one language is politicly correct.
2006-12-11 10:12:06 AM  
Pocket Ninja
A more interesting question concerns why you didn't bother to find out about what the other members in your group were working on.

So when you hear people talking to each other in a language you don't know, you always interrupt them and ask them what they're talking about? That's very considerate of you.
Or did you expect the person you quoted to understand the nuances of Chinese and somehow know that they were talking about something he should help them with? You know, as opposed to just thinking they were bullshiatting with each other in their native tongue. Because it's obviously an easy distinction to make.
2006-12-11 10:13:02 AM  
I find it amusing that the very name English indicates that the language this joker wants used exclusively is not native to this continent. It is, in fact, an immigrant language.

I also find it risible that many of those who espouse an English-only America are themselves quite lacking in English proficiency.
2006-12-11 10:13:13 AM  
Er der mon nogen amerikanere der forstår hvad jeg skriver nu - og hvor mange tror mon, at jeg gør nar med dem?

Ok, How many in here did not understand what I just wrote and how many would become pissed if people started chatting with others in another language than english?

/didn't mean l33t-speak

//actually, fark l33t-speak!
2006-12-11 10:13:26 AM  
Mahurin, the daughter of a German immigrant, said her father didn't expect any hand-holding when he arrived in the United States at the age of 18. And he sure didn't receive any. Once, some friends gave him a package of "chocolate" that turned out to be Ex-Lax. He was left, she said, with plenty of time to sit and ponder an important lesson: Learn English.

He confused Ex-Lax for chocolate? Either he's a complete idiot or this story is made up... I'm going with the latter.
2006-12-11 10:13:39 AM  
This thread needed the HERO tag.
2006-12-11 10:14:42 AM  
As an individual business... fine, whatever. If he/she wants to make sure all their employees speak English, that's they're business.

As a general trend in America lately, it's pretty idiotically ethnocentric, bordering on racism.
For all the "b..b..but Melting Pot!" people... usually when things get melted together, both items do a little melting.

If the people complaining they can't understand what immigrants are saying, maybe they should learn about learning a second language before complaining that other people don't know more than one language.

2006-12-11 10:14:51 AM  
I completely agree that the ability to speak English is an incredibly valuable skill and it is nearly impossible to do very much in our country without it.

However, that wasn't the issue with the guy in TFA. He just didn't want to hear Spanish being spoken around him -- even between employees. It just bugged him. The employer has every right to be an arsewipe if he so chooses. But how is that xenophobic? Well, what is his huge problem with hearing foreign languages around him? My suspicion is, deep down inside, he has a resentment of foreigners in general and Mexicans in particular. That's what it comes down to. Assclowns like that guy at the cheesesteak stand who went out of his way to post a sign that English was the only language accepted at his business -- do you think that was motivated by goodwill towards foreigners?

And "the language of the land" -- should we have an "official language"? I actually don't think so. English is the prevalent one, yes. But English as a language, being so malleable, is difficult to nail down and will change over the centuries.

What these people are terrified of is the possibility that Spanish might actually start becoming more popular. They are terrified to let in too many Spanish speakers because then their beloved "official language" might become the minority language. Would that bug you? If so, why would it bug you? Is it a word that starts with an 'X'?

There are many areas in Texas (and elsewhere, no doubt) where speaking Spanish will actually help you get a job. "Cultural warriors" are uncomfortable with this. Even seeing or hearing Spanish makes them cringe, because it's a reminder of the presence of outsiders. They want to invalidate Spanish and force everyone to use English everywhere, because they are terrified of change, terrified of outsiders, and terrified that their beloved culture will be taken away from them.
2006-12-11 10:15:18 AM  
Googled "Virginia Highland Bed & Breakfast" and found this:

listed as Stephanie Northrup - assuming the daughter?

/Es muy caliente!!!! yi yi yi!!!!
2006-12-11 10:15:34 AM  
so what if they are? all sorts of people could still agree. And any arguements made against why they should speak english are bull. I work in a restaurant with a bunch of illegal immigrants in the back. 2 of em speak astoundingly good english, and they work their asses off 6 days a week, yet somehow still find time to learn. One of em is working really hard to become legal too.

Another one just started taking ESL classes like 2 days a week or so and is showing ALOT of progress, we can have actual conversations now.

but then there is the guy who comes up to me and asks if i "Hablas espanol" I say no. He says "No mas ingles" and basically goes on to say that they're gonna take over america.

It's sickening, but that's the basic idea, that instead of them learning english, we should learn spanish. Go to a hospital (my parents both work at one, i hear the stories). you can't always help spanish people, cause there isn't always a nurse/doctor who speaks their language, meaning they end up sitting there and suffering. Then their family members tell you, you should learn spanish.
2006-12-11 10:16:40 AM  

I don't doubt that there are racists that support it, but that doesn't make it racist. There are plenty of other people who think that having a common language helps to unite a people, and see problems with trying to accomodate every languge completely. Calling it racist simply allows you to stop thinking and put it in a little box where you can ignore it.
2006-12-11 10:16:53 AM  
ReverendJasen: So when you hear people talking to each other in a language you don't know, you always interrupt them and ask them what they're talking about?

No. But if I'm part of a group, I'd make an effort to know what's going on in that group. Or attempt to address the issue if I felt that some members of the group were deliberately acting contrary to the group's purpose.

But that's just me.
2006-12-11 10:18:37 AM  
The airport in Miami has only Spanish signs, no English. The announcements are also only in Spanish. That kind of stuff is crazy to me. In my 'Civil Treatment for Employees' class last week we learned that speaking a foreign language at the work place can cause resentment and distrust among the workers. It is also exclusionary, which is bad.

2006-12-11 10:19:31 AM  
I once pissed off a lady who was talking about why she only lets her kids learn spanish....."we want to keep our cuture pure" hmmm the KKK would be proud. But what pissed her off was when I said, "I am glad that your kids are learning spanish only because they won't be competing against my kids for a job; plus it keeps the price of fast food low"

I thought she was going to hit me actually, she was very angry and called me a racist bigot! I am a mix of 4 races and my wife is not white and I am very well travled; how the heck did I get to be the racist.
2006-12-11 10:20:07 AM  
the_geek: The airport in Miami has only Spanish signs, no English.

uhhhh, which airport were you at exactly?

lot of signs in both languages there (and in Ft. Laud, and MCO, and Tampa)
2006-12-11 10:20:13 AM  
Xenophobia spreads among ignorant, bigoted

The goal of language is to communicate with others. Is it bigoted to want to be able to communicate with anyone I might happen to meet on the street or in my place of employment? The push for English only may be driven in some cases by xenophobia and bigotry but, since the majority of US residents speak English, it inconveniences fewer people to standardize on English rather than Esperanto.

The problem of trying to accomodate all languages does not scale and still leaves some groups excluded. By your reasoning isn't it still bigotry to produce documents in English and Spanish but leave out Simplified Chinese? How about Traditional Chinese and Russian and German and French and Greek and Japanese and Korean and Polish and Vietnamese. All these languages have communities here in the US. Should all be equally accomodated? If not, why not?

/speaks one language fluently
//speaks a second brokenly
///can ask where the library is in two more
2006-12-11 10:20:14 AM  
No, Jules "English, motherfarker, do you speak it?" picture. I'm a sad panda.
2006-12-11 10:21:07 AM  
I see someone obliged.

/refresh is your friend.
2006-12-11 10:22:54 AM  
i say we make all government forms available in spanish and english. hispanics make up a significant portion of our poulation and will soon control politics. nothing wrong with that at all. why dont we embrace the culture? is that so bad? we have embraced many different cultures in the US to make it the great country it is and now a bunch of racists are trying to put walls up and isolate our nation from the world. we should also make it mandatory to learn spanish in schools. whats wrong with knowing more than one language. travel to other countries and you will see that many of the people know multiple languages. including english.
2006-12-11 10:23:06 AM  
"The Cherokee County Commission passed an ordinance Tuesday declaring English the official language of the growing area 30 miles north of Atlanta."

How contemptuously scrumptious!
2006-12-11 10:24:05 AM  
the geek-

well you are full of it. the miami airport has signs in both languages and announcements are made in english and spanish. is this a make believe miami you are referring to?
2006-12-11 10:25:47 AM  
swankywanky - I'd hit it!
2006-12-11 10:26:02 AM  

Why are you racist against non-English/Spanish speakers?
2006-12-11 10:28:02 AM  
Alexandra: Lord_Baull

Xenophobia Concern for national sovereignty spreads among ignorant, bigoted patriots

Fixed it for you.

Let me fix it for both of you:

You're both ignorant and your choice of jingoism and unfounded accusations of bigotry preclude you from participating in a reasonable discussion. Go sit in the corner until you can conduct yourselves like grownups.
2006-12-11 10:28:28 AM  
Bestbank Tiger
Well said.
2006-12-11 10:28:46 AM  
It is unfair to have a conversation that the boss/owner cannot understand. As an owner of a small business I have responsibilities to the people that I employ that include enforcing the sexual harassment laws and keep a safe working environment. If I have two or more employees talking in a language I don’t understand and one of them accuses the other of threaten his/her life or sexually harassing them who do I believe? I am responsible for their safety and well being so I should fire them. However the employee could be making the whole thing up because they just want to be rid of the other person. Or (worst case) they are in it together and they are just setting me up for the lawsuit. For this reason alone the business environment could be conducted in a language everyone understands. And guess what, the owner gets to pick.
2006-12-11 10:29:04 AM  
i am not racist against anyone. i just dont like ignorance.
2006-12-11 10:32:47 AM  
Nothing is wrong with learning other languages. It should be supported. What is wrong with having one of them in common so that we can all communicate? What is wrong with having the common curtosy to adopt the established language of the country you have emigrated to?
2006-12-11 10:32:51 AM  
English is a widely distributed language originating in England that is currently the primary language of several countries. It is extensively used as a second language and as an official language in many other countries. English is the most widely taught and understood language in the world, and sometimes is described as a lingua franca[1]. Although Modern Standard Chinese has more mother-tongue speakers (approximately 700 million) English is used by more people as a second or foreign language, putting the total number of English-speakers worldwide at well over one billion.[citation needed]

An estimated 354 million people speak English as their first language[2]. Estimates about second language speakers of English vary greatly between 150 million and 1.5 billion. English is the dominant international language in communications, science, business, aviation, entertainment, diplomacy and the Internet. It has been one of the official languages of the United Nations since its founding in 1945. It is widely said that English is today's universal language.
2006-12-11 10:34:23 AM  

No... "tout le monde" is "everyone", not "everything". "Everything" would be "tout" (or any of its plural or gender forms), or maybe "tout les choses".

Nice try though!
2006-12-11 10:34:26 AM  

i am not racist against anyone. i just dont like ignorance.

ummmmm.....Is it not "ignorant" on the part of the "illegal alien" to not learn english so that he/she can better assimilate into american society?
2006-12-11 10:34:26 AM  
By the way th precentage of people who live in America who don't speak English is the lowest it's ever been in history. Just a little point of information to ponder.
2006-12-11 10:35:11 AM  
"The Cherokee County Commission passed an ordinance Tuesday declaring English the official language of the growing area 30 miles north of Atlanta."

I've been to Atlanta. That wasn't English they were speaking. It was Southern American English and there is a big diff.

/Mom was a Brit and sounded like the Queen when she spoke, and that is English.
2006-12-11 10:35:25 AM  

But you only support English and Spanish. There are lots of other languages out there. If you are willing to limit it to those two, then why not just English, which is already spoken by the vast majority?
2006-12-11 10:36:11 AM  
if they live in the US they should learn english. If I decided I was going to go live in mexico learning to speak spanish would be a pretty high priority.

I'm all for requiring a second language to be taught from grade school in public schools too. in most areas spanish would be the logical choice.
2006-12-11 10:36:15 AM  
for the most part most hispanics do learn english. it doesnt happen overnight. especially when they are working their asses off for the lowest paying job just to get by. going to class is not high on the list when it comes to survival. making english the only language is ridiculous. we will most likely have a 51st state sometime soon. should we make all puerto ricans speak english as well? whats wrong with having two common languages? have you noticed the increase of hispanics in our population?
2006-12-11 10:37:21 AM  
well russian if we had a high population of french speaking people i would be in favor of a third language. many countries have multiple languages in use and they get along just fine.
2006-12-11 10:37:40 AM  
dallashockey69: racist pricks

Go sit in the corner with Alexandra and Lord_Baull. When you're ready to discuss this like an adult you can come out of time out.
2006-12-11 10:38:44 AM  

immigrants do learn english. you cant just snap your fingers and make it happen overnight. they come here not knowing a word.
2006-12-11 10:39:29 AM  
Okay, rob.d and the rest of you snobs, yes, there are plenty of different accents, dialects and distortions of the English language going on. Do you really think, outside of some extreme cases, that most people who speak some version of English can communicate more effectively with another English speaker versus someone who speaks a completely different language?
2006-12-11 10:39:32 AM  

perhaps you should read the rest of my posts instead of just one.
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