DO REPUBLICANS APPROVE OF PIG LATIN AS A SECOND LANGUAGE?
A friend alerted me to the new site GOPplatform2008.com. "Between the people unhappy with the party for the war in Iraq (a bunch of these comments), the racists, the death-penalty-for-immigrants folks, the global-warming-is-a-conspiracy-theory people, and so on, it’s a wonderfully accurate portrait of where the party stands right now," he wrote. "Favorite idea under the Energy/Gas Prices plank: 'TAKE IRAQ’S OIL.'” As I was reading these comments today I was thinking about Senator Obama's sensible observation yesterday about American students learning a foreign language and how reflexively he was attacked by a Know Nothing Republican base cultivated and even brainwashed by the Limbaughs O'Reillys, Hannitys, Coulters and Dobbses.
Speaking in Powder Springs, GA on Tuesday Obama told the crowd that its embarrassing when Europeans come to the US and they all speak English. By comparison, Obama said, America's young people do not have matching language skills.
"All we can say is merci boucoup," Obama said. "We should be emphasizing foreign languages in our school from an early age."
The statements prompted outrage from some conservative groups who argued his remarks were an endorsement of the idea that Americans should be forced to learn Spanish."
I wonder if they were embarrassed when someone told them that merci boucoup actually isn't Spanish. Maybe someone should tell them that it's actually Aramaic.
Obama, of course, was talking about the shambles Bush's disastrous No Child Left Behind agenda has left behind a generation of American school children who won't be ready to compete in the global marketplace the Republicans are always pushing. I lived in Holland for 4 years when I was younger. Everyone spoke Dutch, English, French and German and then people interested in languages also spoke one or more languages like Spanish, Italian, Russian, Arabic, Swedish on top of that. Small country but a trading giant. Bush-- and the rubber stamp Republicans who followed him, like John McCain-- couldn't have done more harm to the long term prospects of American families if he and they had deliberately set out to do so.