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Thread: The foreign language issue

  1. Darkly Dreaming Dexter
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    #1

    The foreign language issue

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    refering to Obama's statement of "it's embarassing that they come here and speak french...etc...but when we go over there we can only say merci..."

    What do you feel about our country, english, and being bilingual, etc.

    *************

    I, personally, have never had a problem with someone visiting the US - or anywhere - and not knowing the language of that country. That expectation is petty and ridiculous and, well, impossible for a lot to adhere to.

    However - if I was going to move to another country bet your butt I'd learn their language! I would never want to move somewhere and live not knowing what people are saying and how to get from point A to point B. People, also, shouldn't have to struggle to communicate with and understand me.
    Likewise - if someone's moving to the US, etc, I would expect them to have the same courtesy.

    I think Obama fails to realize that a lot of people in a lot of country's have this view. Vacationing: doesn't matter. Moving: make an effort.
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    #2
    Hmm..

    Well when I was in France they spoke English to me. Lol they didn't even bother to speak French, and I'm not sure whether that was them being polite, or if it was an insult. I do know a little French, enough to get me around half comfortably, but I never had to say any more than........"merci".

    I think you should learn the basics when you visit a foreign country. Not only to be polite, but also for your own safety & wellbeing. If there was an emergency or something, you would want to know enough of their language to get help. So I think it's a good idea, but not a requirement.

    However, if you're going to move to that country- you should atleast have the decency to TRY to learn something. I think it's extremely rude not to. You don't have to be fluent, but you should atleast make the attempt to learn, especially if you're going to have to communicate with the citizens. And that really goes for any country, and any language. If you're in their country- you should speak the way the country does.
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    #3
    Well im German myself and i honestly would be lost here if i wouldn't know any English, for sure you meet German ppl here somewhere around but still.
    I think you should kno a language if you move somewhere, the funny part i experienced non English speaking ppl my self in the visa process.

    Well or where i live, and most likely they are Spanish and don't know any English and i think honestly that no visa should be issued if you don't at least be able to speak a lil bit of the language you want to immigrate. ( well maybe in Emergencies)

    Well but honestly y should they learn English, around here in every office its english and spanish. Even if you call your phone company or what ever its always pls press 2 for spanish????

    WEll I know that mexico is pretty close here but i still dont think its fair, where is if you german pls press 5 button...............i think all should be treated equal if i go somewhere i cant just think there will be a german person who will translate for me, ive gone through rough times bc i hate that i dont speak that good and nobody was able to help me but ive gone through it. And i think its not good and not fair to treat some other ppl not equally than other.................



    I think its easier to learn a language if you dont have all this, and most of them just dont learn it bc why bother at all ill get through like this.

    But if Obama says something like that then i think he also should educate the soldiers more, bc he sends them to countries all over the world and the dont freaking know any other language than English, and i think thats ignorant.

    But here the same, since im from Germany i know that less than 25% percent of the soldiers where i lived could speak german, and y everybody can speak english.

    Also my husband who lived there for 6 yrs...well but he still has tooooo......

    I think if you live somewhere or intent to move somewhere you should at least try to learn the language b4......even if its just the basics but i think its just ignorant if you dont even try or dont know anything...............
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    #4
    I've tried three times to write this in a way that won't get me attacked, but I can't. I'm not ignorant on this topic, but preggo brain has gotten to me in a major way today. So I am just going to agree with those that have said for vacation it would be nice to know some of the basics of the language of the country you are visiting and that if you are moving, you should attempt to learn much more than the basics and continue your learning while you are there. Languages are hard to learn - especially english with a million words for one thing or a million meanings for one word - but our country (as diverse and wonderful as it is) shouldn't have to slowly be changing its national language because so many people don't speak the one we already have established.



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    #5
    I think the main problem with this lies in the assumption that if you can't speak english well, you must not be trying to learn.

    especially for older people who have emigrated to America, English is HARD to learn. It can take a few years. Some people, for whatever reason, didn't have the time to learn very well before they came to America and are therefor continuing to learn here.

    I am all for people speaking what I speak (although spanish is a HUGE language in America so I always wonder why people don't freak about learning spanish...) but I think it is sad when people don't take into account how hard it can be to learn.

    Just because they don't speak as well as you does NOT mean they ARENT trying.
    and I'm sick of hearing people assume that.

    ETA:
    I'd also like to add that learning a language is BEST done when you are fully submerged in it. IE learning German? live in germany for a year. Those who choose to learn it better in America are smart because they know that if English is ALL they hear... they will learn it faster than just an hour a day class.
  6. and still I think of you
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    #6
    Quote Originally Posted by MRS<3THOMAS View Post
    Well im German myself and i honestly would be lost here if i wouldn't know any English, for sure you meet German ppl here somewhere around but still.
    I think you should kno a language if you move somewhere, the funny part i experienced non English speaking ppl my self in the visa process.

    Well or where i live, and most likely they are Spanish and don't know any English and i think honestly that no visa should be issued if you don't at least be able to speak a lil bit of the language you want to immigrate. ( well maybe in Emergencies)

    Well but honestly y should they learn English, around here in every office its english and spanish. Even if you call your phone company or what ever its always pls press 2 for spanish????

    WEll I know that mexico is pretty close here but i still dont think its fair, where is if you german pls press 5 button...............i think all should be treated equal if i go somewhere i cant just think there will be a german person who will translate for me, ive gone through rough times bc i hate that i dont speak that good and nobody was able to help me but ive gone through it. And i think its not good and not fair to treat some other ppl not equally than other.................



    I think its easier to learn a language if you dont have all this, and most of them just dont learn it bc why bother at all ill get through like this.

    But if Obama says something like that then i think he also should educate the soldiers more, bc he sends them to countries all over the world and the dont freaking know any other language than English, and i think thats ignorant.

    But here the same, since im from Germany i know that less than 25% percent of the soldiers where i lived could speak german, and y everybody can speak english.

    Also my husband who lived there for 6 yrs...well but he still has tooooo......

    I think if you live somewhere or intent to move somewhere you should at least try to learn the language b4......even if its just the basics but i think its just ignorant if you dont even try or dont know anything...............
    actually, the military does provide rosetta stone to soldiers. We are using it. Not just for one language, but for anything you can think of. It is wonderful

    Quote Originally Posted by see_jay_elle View Post
    I've tried three times to write this in a way that won't get me attacked, but I can't. I'm not ignorant on this topic, but preggo brain has gotten to me in a major way today. So I am just going to agree with those that have said for vacation it would be nice to know some of the basics of the language of the country you are visiting and that if you are moving, you should attempt to learn much more than the basics and continue your learning while you are there. Languages are hard to learn - especially english with a million words for one thing or a million meanings for one word - but our country (as diverse and wonderful as it is) shouldn't have to slowly be changing its national language because so many people don't speak the one we already have established.
    There is no official language in the U.S. right now



    I can say first hand: when we got orders to Italy, I started trying to learn Italian. It is hard!! I am still not fluent, but I know enough to communicate when I need to. Again, the military offeres Rosetta Stone to its soldiers, you dont have to be on orders either and you can learn any language. I am planning to learn Spanish after I finish Italian.

    I think it is important to learn enough to get around. Vacation or not.
  7. and still I think of you
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    #7
    Quote Originally Posted by Bryanna View Post

    Just because they don't speak as well as you does NOT mean they ARENT trying.
    and I'm sick of hearing people assume that.
    Thank you!! Plus until you become fluent, sometimes you are scared you are going to mix words up or say them wrong. ITs not easy at all!

    And again the U.S. does not have an official language.
  8. rachelelizabeth
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    #8
    Quote Originally Posted by see_jay_elle View Post
    Languages are hard to learn - especially english with a million words for one thing or a million meanings for one word
    Haha, German has about nine words for 'the' & 'a' (each), English isn't as hard to learn as you'd first think.
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    #9
    I think if you are going to move to a country, you should attempt to learn the language. I know that we have no "official" language, it just seems English is pretty much the most spoken here. I don't know the facts I could be wrong on that. If you want to move here, you should attempt to learn English. I don't think it's fair to make people here learn more languages to make others comfortable.
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    #10
    Vacations are temporary . I agree some language familiarity should be had for your safety and ease but to visit and expect to be fluent? Obama will be visiting many countries if he is elected I hope he is ready to study and practice what he preaches heh.

    If I were to live in a country heck yeah ...learn the language . It bothers me that I live here and my tax dollars go to write things in 50 languages when people live here . I know English is hard to learn , but if you live here to expect others to know YOUR language for your ease is ridiculous .
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