Thursday, June 29, 2006

Avon Park May Go English Only

The city of Avon Park may soon be "English Only". Their city council is poised for a vote on July 10th which will make English the official language, and will impose fines on anyone who houses or employs illegal aliens.

Opponents to this move speak of sending a message of hostility to the latin community. How ridiculous! Most legal latinos are vehemently opposed to their illegal brethren who come over the borders, haven't paid their dues, and steal their jobs from under their noses.

As most of my readers know, one of my best friends is Ozma. She and her family are former Mexicans who are now legal Americans, and proud of it. They worked hard to get out of the barrio and make something of themselves. They weren't sneaky. They worked for what they got. They didn't show up at hospitals for "free" medical care which cost the community. They didn't evade taxes by arranging to be paid under the table. They didn't have to pay for everything with cash, but established good credit and good names. When they eventually collect social security, it will be the social security which they earned.

Someone has the gall to question the legality of this ordinance. Gee, heaven forbid we pass a law banning something illegal.

If only every city in America made this same choice! Until we make the decision that we will not accept or condone illegal behaviors, we have made the decision that we will.


Scott said...

God, such a tough issue. You talk of people who are living in desperate poverty on the Mexican side of the border with little compassion.

It is great that your friends were able to pick themselves up and make something of themselves, but not everyone has the skill or the opportunity to do that. Living in poor barios in Juarez Mexico would make one pretty desperate and I understand the need to get out. If your child were deathly ill and you had no option for health care would you as a parent now show up at whatever Hospital would help?

Just some thoughts.


Saur♥Kraut said...

Scott, I certainly empathize with the Mexicans living in Mexico. They need to be proactive and change their corrupt government. And the USA needs to have a no-tolerance policy toward this corrupt government, which makes its living through graft and at the expense of its citizens and the USA.

Of course when there's an emergency, a child or any other person should be seen and treated. But too often they use the system to treat colds, flu, and other slight ailments, because they know it's paid for by someone other than themselves.

My friends had no special skills. Just the desire to do it right.

Badoozie said...

I'm VERY glad you provided this perspective from Ozma, because a lot of people are not understanding this!! LEGAL IMMIGRANTS are opposed to the illigal immigrants getting free stuff here, hello people, wake up. how would we feel if people from france came over here, and didn't have to pay taxes, just cause. the country can not operate or pay their own bills without taxes being paid by the citizens. and if hordes of these people are not paying taxes, but take, taking, how long do you think this great country will be able to provide said services to ANYONE. lets be reasonable here.

Ed Abbey said...

Seems funny that we have to pass laws to do something about ILLEGAL aliens. What are the penalties for being illegal now? I certainly hope it is something other than just stiffer fines. Good luck collecting them from someone who has no bank account, social security number, driver's license, etc.

In short, I have no problem with Avon Park or any other city passing these laws but I really doubt that it will solve our illegal alien problem. To solve it, I think we must first protect our borders.

Grant said...

Most politicians with a sizeable minority constituency will balk at passing such a law just to remain in their good graces.

R2K said...

That the issue of English as official is even in the same post as illegal aliens is confusing to me. How one has all that much to do with the other I don’t get. One is your typical gay marriage ban legislation (we want votes from while republicans, so we are going to make this token law which makes them feel better about what they see as this pressure from the colored people moving into their area) and the other is a critical issue of law enforcement and national security.

I don’t see how people cant question the legality of making people speak one language or another in a free country. I mean am I the only one here? Or is this concept clearly dumb and impossible to enforce? Calling it the official language is just about all they can do. Does that really mean all that much? Really just like adding god to the pledge to fight communism, or adding god bless America to baseball games: it is just a BS PR move.

Immigrants are a totally different story, however. Lets enforce the law, maybe without doing racist things like outlawing other languages. And it takes quite a bit for me to use that word, racist, but official languages (then official religions, then official skin colors, names) is something the roman empire would have done. It is neither needed, or helpful.

Or am I way off?

I think the people who just run away from a poor country are cowards. If you dont stay and stand up for your country, you dont have the right to live in either country im my mind. People say how bad life is there, but you know what, it wont get any better if people keep coming here and giving up on things. Sometimes you have to suck it up. Was America in 1650 such an easy place to be? I dont think so. But you work through it and make something of what you have.

Bryan said...

Hurray for Avon Park!

The Lazy Iguana said...

The Indians should have built a fence.

Jessica said...

Gee, heaven forbid we pass a law banning something illegal.

Speaking a language other than English isn't illegal, should never be illegal, and is a completely separate issue from immigration law. I understand that Avon Park's ordinance also includes a fine for renting property to illegal aliens; nonetheless, laws about language are a separate issue. You might as well pass a law against being gay and a fine for anyone who participates in prostitution.

Limiting access to public services such as healthcare, government offices, and education through English-only ordinances is unconstitutional and a violation of Civil Rights. See Lau v. Nichols from 1974.

The lawyer interviewed may think that total immersion in English "helps the integration" when 3rd generation family members lose their native language, but anyone with a linguistics background will tell you about subtractive bilingualism and what a disservice it is to children's intellectual development.

Herb said...

I know the owners of a restaurant here (CO) that have been here for generations and they feel the same way. Their family has worked hard. I lived in El Paso for a while and saw Juarez, and agree that it is decadent and corrupt, but how is that our problem? "English Only" means the government will not have to print signs and brochures in other languages and can save costs. When my Great-Grandfather cane here from Germany he had to learn the language and My Irish ancestors on the other side had to learn to blend into society as well. BTW, I think the word "Illegal" still means "against the law."

Ed Abbey said...

Alex - English only does not force people to speak only English. It simply says that we no longer have to teach basic school classes in foreign languages, the government doesn't have to produce documents in multiple languages, and all signs are in English. Instead, there are gradeschools teaching math in Spanish, DMV's creating tests in Spanish so that solely Spanish speaking people can get licensed to drive on roads where all signs are already in English and one local office has to have an interpreter on staff at all times! What a waste of our taxpayer dollars!

Whenever I'm in a foreign country, I don't force people to cater to me because I don't know their language. Instead, I get a dictionary and try to learn their language. It is only natural.

R2K said...

They all learn english in foreign countries... And the signs there have english. : )

I dont mind the government not giving forms in spanish. But teaching students in spanish may be required as they learn english. I dont see how this is a practical measure, however. People in china town have all the signs and papers in mandarin etc (sorry im ignorant on the types), no one complains about that here. I dont mind personally, it makes my neighborhood interesting. The illegal workers here, however (and there may be as many as 250,000 in New York China Towns) are a real problem. Force them to speak english, and they will simply take an english speaking friend along with them.

Eddo said...

Unfortunately, it seems that hardly anyone has a backbone in America anymore. We are so tolerant that we will allow ourselves to suffer and to what end? Where do we draw the line?

Saur♥Kraut said...

Eddo, 'zactly!

Alex, well, they're only making English the Official Language. There's no way to force it. This problem IS becoming monumental, isn't it?

Ed, 'zactly. Thank you.

Jessica, what Ed said.

Herb, 'zactly!!! So if you're from CO did you get here by way of FTS?

...more soon...

Jessica said...

It's not just about Spanish and not just about people crossing the border from Mexico to earn more money. What about the thousands of Hmong or Somali refugees living in St. Paul, Minnesota? Is it so wrong to provide them access to a translator when their infant daughter is taken to the emergency room because of an epileptic attack? Is it a waste of taxpayer dollars to offer a form in their native language so that they can file a police report when their house is broken into? It's a matter of civil rights, not convenience.

Badoozie said...

eddo said pretty much the same thing i did, only in manlanguage. maybe he wants to get married?

Herb said...

I had done a guest piece about Irish immigrants on FTS' blog while he was moving and you had commented on it and I followed your link to here and have been checking out your blog on and off since then.

Bryan said...

Saur, I thought you might want to post this video (but only if you want to) on your blog since nobody seems to be visiting mine anymore. I just think that every red-blooded American should know, and then act.

I've got other web sites and message boards I moderate, but the blog just seems to be dead lately.