Two recent letters to the editor in the Los Angeles Times both promoted learning English.
Linda Roberts of Altadena, CA, wrote: “The problems that arise with a multitude of languages being spoken in one country is that there is no commonality binding people together. It is an insult for people living permanently or even temporarily in a country not to learn the language of the land.”
Roberts added: “As a teacher, I encountered so many people who chose not to learn English even though they had lived here for decades. As a result, money had to be spent on translation. Also, we print ballots in multiple languages even though people must demonstrate proficiency in English to become naturalized U.S. citizens.”
Roberts concluded: “I cannot imagine living in another country without wanting to learn the language. Otherwise, I might as well have stayed where I came from.”
Rafael A. Chavez of Sherman Oaks, CA, wrote: “My parents immigrated to the U.S. in the early 1950s. I started my primary education in a total immersion method; there was no bilingual education then.”
Chavez added: “[In] this country, English speakers have the advantage. Most major professional transactions are in English.”
Chavez concluded by observing that “English is the primary language in the United States, and…assimilation is the key to achieving the American dream.”