Nevada town repeals English-only law.

United States
February 14, 2007 10:01pm CST
Pahrump, Nevada - The board of this growing desert town has struck down a law that made English the official language and barred residents from flying a foreign flag by itself. The ordinance, which briefly put this community 60 miles from Las Vegas in the middle of the national immigration debate, was enacted in November but never enforced. The Pahrump Town Board repealed it Tuesday. What is your opinion of a law that makes English the official language of the United States? Also, what is your opinion of a law that barrs residents from flying a foreign flag? Thanks. Lloyd
2 people like this
8 responses
@lisado (1230)
• United States
15 Feb 07
This might not be a popular answer, but I think that they should make English the official language. It has been the unofficial one. It bugs me when people come here and then get mad when we can't speak their language. They came HERE! Americans are considered rude if they don't know the language of a country they visit, so why is this different? If you want to live in a different country, you learn their language. Simple. I don't have an opinion, really, about the flag issue. I don't know why they wouldn't have the US flag up, too, since they live here.
3 people like this
• United States
15 Feb 07
I've been to Germany, Panama, Venezuala and Columbia. And let me tell you that it's in your best interest to try to learn the language. I not saying you have to speak it perfectly, but be able to express yourself to a degree. Lloyd
• Netherlands
15 Feb 07
I do not live in USA but my opinion is that in any country you should HAVE to fly that country's flag next to a foreign one out of respect. You are living on THEIR soil, pay them respect. I don't know what the uproar is about over English as that is what the majority of schools are taught in there and the government body speaks English first! Why should English not be proclaimed as the official languae. I know there are immigrants.... I was an immigrant when I did live there and guess what?? I LEARNED English first before going. I did, anyone can too.
2 people like this
• United States
16 Feb 07
You sure make a lot of sense. I don't know why everyone doesn't understand what you are saying. There are many people who don't respect our country. Lloyd
• Philippines
15 Feb 07
Do you mean to say that at this time, English is not the official language of the US? Up to this point, all of the Filipinos must be thinking that it is so. Besides, as to the flying of a foreign flag in anyone's residence, I do not see the point. You are making us see a picture which people do not commonly do, flying the flag of their country of origin in their US homes. Yes, it is an uncommon practice because, regular residential houses do not have flags raised in them. This practice is a must in government offices though, where aside from the flag of the host country, the flag of the country they are representing flies alongside it. The way we understand it, the natives of the US are the American Indians and the people from the United Kingdom came in droves, and they were called the pioneers. The language they used evolved to the way it is now and it is called the American English. The huge influx of the Spanish speaking people from Mexico started the Latino population and some of them do not know how to speak English. This is a puzzle to me when I learned it. I have been thinking all the while that, all residents in the US, are required to be English proficient both in spoken and written forms. Personally, I believe that it is only rightful that the US will require everyone to be able to speak English in order for them to have a permanent resident status. As to the flying of the flag, that is really pointless, I'd rather that that point shall be explained to everyone upon approval of their resident status. I understand that the immigration officers in your country strictly enforces the immigration laws.
• United States
16 Feb 07
English is more like the unofficial language of United States. I just can't see how you navigate your way around this country without a good knowledge of the English language. Lloyd
• United States
15 Feb 07
Well to me I think at least those who come here from another country should at least try to speak English since that is what the main population of people speak. Most Americans usually have to learn another language when going to a different country or have an interpreture with them. So I don't have a problem with making English the official language of America. As for denying people to fly foreign flags on their own property I don't think that is right. Yes I do understand that America is a more than proud country, but just because people move here, they shouldn't be made to give up their nationality or pride they may have for their own country. To me there is nothing wrong with letting people know from which country you come from, and none should be offended by it.
• United States
16 Feb 07
I know that when I traveled to other countries, I tried hard to learn the language. It was fun learning another language. Lloyd
@jenalyn (675)
• United States
16 Feb 07
Being able to communicate is important. If you don't know the language of someone that you are doing business with, or maybe helping medically, it can be frustrating, and can have a negative outcome. It is unreasonable to expect people to become fluent in several different languages so that they can communicate and function in their daily lives. Having one language that everyone knows is a reasonalbe expectation. If I was trying to do business or went to live in another country, I would learn the language of the people that lived in that country. That being said I think English should be made the official language since the majority of America has been speaking that for decades. It is a difficult language, yes, but even broken english is easier to understand and less frustrating than learning a buch of new languages living in america. As far as flying your country's flag on your property, I don't really understand the objection to it. I don't see a big deal with that. People are allowed to display many things on their property that represent hate, and hateful meanings behind them. So flying a flag just seems like no big deal. I don't think if I saw a foreign flag I would care.
• United States
16 Feb 07
I think that our government has enabled this behavior by providing so many things in so many languages. I think the business community is also responsible by giving different language options when making telephone calls. I really don't know if we can fix it now. Lloyd
• Netherlands
16 Feb 07
It is all about respect. That is the bottom line. A foreign business should fly the nations flag next to their own. For one, they are given the opportunity to do business there on foreign soil. This isn't a right it is a privilege. (They don't have to let you in) If you are in that country you should show respect to the people of that nation and try to behave in a manner accepted by that society. This doesn't mean you have to abandon who you are and your culture, you should just find a way to make them work together. I say this as a foreigner myself with many years of experience. I lived in USA for many years. I learned English and followed the rules of the land. That was my respect. I learned politeness as according to where I was living and matched my own cultures with those around me. Now I live in another country again! I am not from here either. I learned the language and the customs and again, follow the rules of the land. If you constantly act as if you have the right to disregard their everyday culture and expect them in their native land to bow to yours you are not only ignorant but you will not gain any respect with the locals. (When you need help in a foreign land, who do you turn to? People around you and if they think youre a jerk.... your pretty much on your own eh?)
@Idlewild (6105)
• United States
15 Feb 07
The law sounds kind of silly... in an area with a lot of people who don't speak English, those people are not going to be able to shop or order, so they'll shop somewhere else. If someone doesn't want to learn English, a law like that isn't going to force them to learn. They'll just move to the next town without a law. And the store owners will lose business. The flag law seems odd, too. I guess you could get arrested if you flew an Irish flag on St. Paddy's Day?
1 person likes this
• United States
15 Feb 07
Thanks for providing another perspective on this issue. So if you just wrote is correct, then what could be the motive behind such a law? Lloyd
@Idlewild (6105)
• United States
15 Feb 07
I guess a lot of people feel that immigrants, and especially Spanish-speaking ones, are becoming too numerous and they don't like hearing a lot of Spanish being spoken. There was a movement a few years ago to try to pass a national law to make English the official language of the U.S. I don't know if such laws would actually require people to speak English in businesses, etc. or whether they're just symbolic gestures. In the story you mention, Idon't know what exactly it would mean for that town to make Englishthe official language.
1 person likes this
@Asylum (48282)
• Manchester, England
16 Feb 07
I do not find anything wrong with declaring english to be the national language, since it is the native tongue of the vast majority of americans. However, that does not mean that I would agree with objections raised against someone for using a different language, particularly considering how many american citizens do not speak english. The United States is supposed to be a democracy, so there is no justification for barring the flying of another flag. I was under the impression that this was what freedom and liberty were about. Many americans have their heritage in other countries and it is totally unacceptable to tell these people not to hold respect for their original homeland.
• United States
16 Feb 07
Thanks for your perspective on this debate. All I know is that if I move to another country , I gonna learn the language of that country as soon as possible. Lloyd
@Asylum (48282)
• Manchester, England
16 Feb 07
I would do the same. This does not alter the fact that if my brother moved there also then I would speak english when talking to him.
@kims374 (300)
• United States
16 Feb 07
I agree with this. If you are an imigrant, one should be able to speak english, and only fly the american flag. Otherwise, it causes more hatred, prejudice, and division in this country. Personally, I think the government has allowed too many illegals here, and now we are as "unsafe" as ever.
• United States
16 Feb 07
According to the government there are anywhere between 12 and 20 million illegal in the country. Just yesterday Bank of America introduced a plan to tap the illegal immigrant population. They are going to allow them to get a credit card without having a social security card. Lloyd