Monday, August 04, 2003

SHOULD ENGLISH BE OUR "NATIONAL" LANGUAGE? -- YOU DECIDE

(I recognize some of the following may sound like stereotyping -- but it's nonetheless true.)

Ever have difficulty with the following?

1. Understanding a cab driver in any large city.
2. Trying to communicate with the order taker at the drive-through window of a restaurant.
3. Translating misspelled and misplaced words and phrases in business documents.

I'm sure you can think of more.

And, while the subject of this story wasn't born in the US, it serves as an example of how far away we are from where we were a number of years ago. National literacy (and national quantitative skills) are one of the few measures of social progress where we seem to keep slipping down the list.

How long will it take before this gets corrected? My guess (hope) is that it will be about ten years after a school voucher system is made the law of the land.


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