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ERIC Number: ED281704
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1987-Mar
Pages: 10
Abstractor: N/A
Legalizing the Status of English: A New Form of Oppression for Language Minority Groups.
Curiel, Herman
The English-only movement, which promotes a Constitutional Amendment that would make English the official language of the United States, represents a threat to the Constitutional rights of non-English speaking citizens. This nation's founders--faced with a linguistically and culturally diverse population--did not see a need to mention language choice at all either in the Declaration of Independence or the Constitution. From the colonization period to World War I, bilingual schooling was common. World War I fostered nationalism and isolationism in the United States, and the existing cultural pluralism shifted toward cultural assimilation. The modern revival of public bilingual education in the United States evolved in the 1960's in the context of minority rights. The 1980's have seen a return to nationalism, isolationism, and low tolerance for cultural differences. In this political climate, a small but growing group of legislators, backed by a private organization known as U.S. English, has launched a campaign to eliminate the public use of non-English languages. The English-only proponents are not just fearful--they are confused, and they have not learned from history. What keeps the U. S. society together is tolerance for cultural, religious, social, political, and even linguistic differences. (JHZ)
Publication Type: Information Analyses; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Laws, Policies, & Programs: United States Constitution