Friday, April 3, 2009

This is not too much to ask


A proposal under consideration by the Georgia legislature would demand that new drivers take a written license test in English. Does anyone see a problem with this? Of course they do. According to an AP story, some employers and immigrant advocates fear it would keep people unfamiliar with the English language from being able to work. Well, boo hoo. If someone wants to drive in this country, they should be able to read signs that are printed, primarily, in English. I'd prefer to share the road with folks who understand such instructions and warnings as "Dangerous Curve Ahead," "Men Working" and "Children Playing." If I moved to Brazil, I wouldn't expect to be granted a driver's license until I knew enough Portuguese to understand roadside instructions. People who move here should have the same expectations.

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8 Comments:

Blogger Ellipses said...

Portugese? In Brazil? I thought they talked Mexican :-)

And in case you cannot see my exaggerated expressions and voice inflection... I am kidding about that... It reminded me of something from long ago that makes me laugh even today... but it's too long of a story to relate, so let's leave it at this: "That doesn't say Ho-zay... that says Joe's"

April 3, 2009 at 2:21 PM  
Blogger {cher} said...

it's getting out of hand. yes this is the 'land of the free' and a chance for everyone, but damnit, we have to draw the line somewhere.

if you can't read/write/speak english.. then learn two words.. bus and taxi!

April 3, 2009 at 4:12 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

So, you want to keep the certification in one language only, right? I think I have that right, unlike the marriage certification between one man and one woman.

April 3, 2009 at 8:22 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I have to admit this is reasonable. It's a matter of safety and saves us the unnecessary expense of putting up highway signs in several languages. However, I AM in favor of putting signs in several languages identifying our national monuments in Washington, D.C. A recent article in the Washington Post said there's a movement to have them in English only. But that's just plain arrogant -- not everyone in the world would recognize the Washington Monument on sight. In fact, DC cops say, a lot of Americans can't tell the monuments apart on sight.

April 4, 2009 at 8:07 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Quidado! Piso mojado.

April 4, 2009 at 8:08 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Which raises the question, how come you never see "Caution! Wet floor!" signs in Rumanian, French, German or Arabic? Don't we care if they slip?

April 4, 2009 at 5:22 PM  
Blogger rschmitt said...

If you want to live in this country, you should learn the language. Period.

April 8, 2009 at 12:04 PM  
Blogger Emily said...

I totally agree.
I just came back from Brazil a few days ago. I was never addressed in English, nor were there any road signs in English.
It is a matter of 'respect.'
When in another country, one should respect the citizens by learning the language.

(That's also to say if an American were to go to Italy that they should learn Italian)

July 18, 2009 at 5:28 PM  

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