Sunday, November 05, 2006

what to do, what to do...

Long week....I'll wait before I post some pics. Thanks for all the support and suggestions! Geez, kinda knocks the wind outta your sails when you can't post a visual.

Finished one big job, will do another this coming week, and a couple of sub gigs. We had a cat-fight break out at the elementary school I've been subbing for. My youngest corrected me; said it was a "kitten" fight, not a cat fight. It was pretty throwing, face punching, hair pulling, Karen jumping in the middle while the other sub removed the hands of the hair puller from the pullee's hair. One of the paras was upset because she didn't get to see it, or practice her "restraining" training. Hm.

I'm in a quandary. There are so many Hispanic kids at this school. Everyone is learning Spanish, there are Spanish signs all over the place, etc. My personal feeling is that I'm a little perturbed that this much energy, money, and time is spent on many who are in this country illegally. Now, I could also say that our founding fathers were a tad illegal when they took things over. However, my ancestors that came here had to jump through hoops to become legal; they had to have sponsors, learn English, and be productive.

At a gallery opening last night, one parent was bragging about their American child being in a Spanish immersion class at school in their district. I suggested that perhaps the Hispanic kids needed to be in ENGLISH immersion instead. They are here on this soil, and it would only help them to be fluent in English. This parent looked at me dumbly, and said...well, they are here to stay, and they take jobs that our teens and workers won't. I found that offensive as well. Are we going to assume that Hispanics can't rise to anything other than working the jobs that American people are too "good" to take? That's a bit shameful. I'd like to see legal Hispanics thrive and prosper here, and become active citizens.

I'm not sure it's right to force someone to learn Spanish anyway. My kids didn't want to learn Spanish, they learned Latin, and one is interested in OUR ethnic background languages; Russian and Czech. My point is that I would like these kids to be enabled to succeed on THIS soil if they are to stay (and if they are LEGAL) and little kids would learn English in probably 2 weeks in immersion because they pick it up so fast. I also have to say that these are the sweetest kids, very helpful, and behaved compared to their U.S. counterparts! So, you might see my quandary. What do you think?


Kansas Bob said...

I learned Spanish in Jr High (got all A's) and can't speak or understand it. So, I wonder if teaching a language to young people really helps in the long term?

Chad said...

I took five years of Spanish, and to be honest teaching a foreign language late in life, (high school or higher) is futile.. unless you're taught young and can 'think' in the language or have extensive years of study and constant use of it, then you can't even begin to be fluent in it enough for 'every day' use.

I live in a community with a VERY large hispanic population, and well I agree they are here to live in the US, whose national language is "English" so therefore should't they at least be taught English and learn to use it properly to enable them to succeed in our country? The business world speaks "English" all over the world.. and unless they know it, they can't even begin to get out of the rut of the low working class jobs they get stuck in.

I want these people that are illegal given a way to become citizens, and to pay taxes and to learn English and become active members of our society, not feel shunned and pushed down because of where they come from, or their 'illegal' status.

They don't stand a chance to get off welfare, and out of crappy minimum wage jobs if they don't learn the language.

Bruce said...

I'm with you on this one. I appreciate your words (and those of Chad) because my wife was an elementary school secretary for several years and learned first hand the problems with the language barriers. The immigration issue is such a hot topic right now and something needs to be done. Will it happen after this election is over? Who knows.


BarBarA said...

RIGHT ON SISTER K for posting on a controversial subject.

I am in agreement with you and this is one of the reasons why:

"Are we going to assume that Hispanics can't rise to anything other than working the jobs that American people are too "good" to take? That's a bit shameful. I'd like to see legal Hispanics thrive and prosper here, and become active citizens."

I would be very offended if I was Hispanic and this is the way Americans perceived me - yet many of them SEEM to perceive themselves that way too.

As the mother of a child who has been immersed with Hispanics in school since Kindergarten - yes, it is a problem still in HS for him because the students that don't speak English get the most help while others are ignored.

So, YES! they should learn English! All the other immigrants I know have learned out language (for example a friend of mine who is from Cambodia struggled for years learning but is so proud because she loves America and wants to speak her NEW language. Plus they don't print things in Cambodian so if she wanted to read she had to learn.

Hmm, maybe its partly our fault for making it so very easy to NOT learn by providing everything is Spanish?

Paige said...

It would help if OUR government would appoint a national language such as English. It would help if our STATE would appoint a language. I have heard where Arizona has recently passed a law that English it the spoken language of the state. How Grand is that?
Let also say that I think the police should be allowed to ask if a person is a legal citizen or not.