Why Foreign Languages Are So Important To America
Start writing a post
Politics and Activism

Why Foreign Languages Are So Important To America

This is America, we speak English, and Spanish, and French, and Japanese...

259
Why Foreign Languages Are So Important To America
Pexels

You’ve probably heard it before. This is America, speak English! Politicians, celebrities, and even your teachers have said, “I’m not going to learn another language to accommodate foreigners. You come to our country, you learn our language”. And maybe this argument makes sense to you. Maybe you think immigrants should have to adapt to American culture. They should have to learn our language. English is the official language, right?

Wrong.

While English is the primary language for legal and political matters, it not the “official” language. Some individual states have English-official laws, but the country as a whole does not have an official language on the books. There is no law or Constitutional amendment stating that we must speak English.

America has always been a diverse country of many languages. In addition to English, Thomas Jefferson also spoke Latin, Italian, and French. Today, the most common languages in the US (besides English) are Spanish, Chinese, French, and Tagalog.

Being bilingual or multilingual is extremely common in Europe. In fact, some European schools require their students to learn a second foreign language! European schools start teaching students foreign language at a very young age. Children in Europe learn foreign language as young as three years old!

So yes, this is America, and we do speak English. And German. And Spanish. And French. And Chinese. “Foreign” languages aren’t that foreign at all-they’re part of our culture. Learning another language can be helpful for anyone, regardless of your major or job. Being bilingual or multilingual looks great on a resume. It helps you communicate with larger groups of people. Languages are more than just syntax and grammar. Chances are, if you take a language class, you will also learn about that country’s history and culture. Languages open the door to learning.

So next time you’re on campus and you hear the exchange students speaking their native language, be happy. We live in a country where we’re free to speak different languages and still come together under one flag. And that is a beautiful thing.

Report this Content
This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
Featured

Pop Culture Needs More Plus Size Protagonists

When almost 70% of American women are a size 14 or bigger, movies like Dumplin' are ridiculously important, while movies like I Feel Pretty just feel ridiculous.

758
Dumplin'

For as long as I can remember, I've been fat. The protagonists in the movies I've watched and the books I've read, however, have not been. . .

Keep Reading... Show less
How I Met My Best Friends In College

Quarantine inspired me to write about my freshman year to keep it positive and focus on all the good things I was able to experience this year! In this article, I will be talking about how I was able to make such amazing friends by simply putting myself out there and trying new things.

Keep Reading... Show less
Featured

29 Things To Do in Myrtle Beach, SC Regardless Of The Weather

Both indoors and outdoors things to do in beautiful Myrtle Beach, South Carolina.

5814
29 Things To Do in Myrtle Beach, SC Regardless Of The Weather
Dahlia DeHaan

In 2017, I moved to Myrtle Beach, South Carolina - one of the most touristy places on the East Coast. And ever since then, I've befriended locals and done some exploring on my own to discover new, fun things to do in Myrtle Beach. Here are just a few of my favorites.

Keep Reading... Show less
Sports

The Birthplace of Basketball

The NBA Playoffs are here. It’s kind of funny that my history kind of started out in the same place that basketball’s did too.

6844
quotefancy.com

Basketball was originally created by James Naismith, a Presbyterian minister who taught P.E. at YMCA in Springfield, Massachusetts. He invented the new game to keep the young men occupied inside during the winter. Borrowing ideas from rugby and a game he used to play as a boy, “duck on the rock”, he thought of nailing up boxes to throw a ball into. He couldn’t find boxes so he used peach baskets instead. The rest of the rules he made up in about an hour.

Keep Reading... Show less
Featured

I Met You At The Wrong Time

At least, that's what I keep telling myself.

5651
Tumblr

I met you when I was in middle school and I thought boys still had cooties. I wore flared jeans, Aeropostale shirts, and had the dorkiest braces ever. I cared about what other people thought of me, and I definitely cared a lot about what you thought, too. You were older, and your friends made fun of me when I talked to you. I pretended it didn’t bother me, but it did. I sat two rows in front of you in class, and constantly tried to think of reasons to talk to you. Your hair was a curly mess. It still is. You graduated from middle school a year before me, and I missed you. I don’t think you even knew my name.

Keep Reading... Show less

Subscribe to Our Newsletter

Facebook Comments