Voice from the Commonwealth
Commentary, World Views and Occasional Rants from a small 'l' libertarian in Massachussetts

"If ye love wealth greater than liberty, the tranquility of servitude better than the animating contest for freedom, go home and leave us in peace. We seek not your council nor your arms. Crouch down and lick the hand that feeds you, and may posterity forget that ye were our countrymen." - Samuel Adams

Tuesday, July 15, 2003

The Massachusetts Legislature spit in the faces of voters yesterday. And of course the 68% that voted for an end to bilingual education will turn around in the next election and put these same arrogant bastards back in office. And this is not the first time they have done it (clean elections, which I disagree with), nor will it be the last. We voted for Mitt as our Governor so he could fix the budget. Well, they did away with any chance of reducing the deficit yesterday, too.

My daughter is an ESL (English as a Second Language) student and let me start by saying that "bilingual" is a code word for teaching Spanish to every schoolkid. See, my daughter is a native Indonesian speaker, and let me tell you her "bilingual education" consists of English and English. Which is just fine with me and has done wonders for her. When she got here in 2000 she spoke no English at all. Now people are shocked when they find that out. Did she get that way because she was learning in English and Indonesian at the same time? Not bloody likely and to assume that children can only learn that way is pretty demeaning. She picked up English in class, on the playground, from TV, from friends (within 3 months she was having friends over and was chatting with them in English) and from me at home (and, for the record, I am a fluent Indonesian speaker). But, most of all she learned English from her teachers (who did not hold up the class for her, by the way) in her regular English classes. She finds her ESL classes boring and feels they do not give her more than her regular classes. If she had the choice, she would drop the ESL classes and just concentrate on her regular classes.

The emotional, two-hour House debate featured several immigrant lawmakers giving speeches in languages other than English, leaving their colleagues scratching their heads.

House Education Chairman Marie St. Fleur rattled through comments in French, French Creole and Spanish, then bellowed: ``What you just experienced is exactly what our children experience who do not speak a word of English when they come into our school system.''

Screw you and your diversionary tactics you bellowing sow (I could have done the same in Indonesian, Malaysian, Arabic and Spanish). My wife and daughter could do the same to you and then both would turn around and tell you that while here they speak English. These politicians are trying to bludgeon with emotion rather than actually debate the issue. These people sell children short by assuming that they just can't possible learn English. Does Ms. St Fleur think that she could be the House Education Chairman if she came out of school barely speaking English but speaking fluent French, French Creole and Spanish? But she would exile thousands of children to such a purgatory. Never fluently picking up English, never owning a single language, instead doomed to going through life of almost semi-literacy. But at least she'll "care" and she'll never lose her seat because she will keep the semi-literate masses dependent on her and demagogues like her.

The only way we can see to it that measures voted on and adopted by the voters can be implemented is by putting out of office those who use their elected post in a manner more appropriate for unelected royalty that rules by divine right with no need to submit to the will of mere common voters. We should all know the voting records of those we vote for. If you do not approve of your Legislator's record, vote against them. Send them packing, once that happens a few times we will have politicians who represent and reflect the values of those who put them in office.

< email | 7/15/2003 04:14:00 PM | link

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