Tuesday, May 16, 2006


So last night during the speech Bush talked about immigrants learning English, and in some respects I agree with the concept. I think learning English is a good step to improving one's life here. But I find it silly this notion that there are millions of people who are actively trying to avoid learning English.

But declaring that everyone should learn math, or everyone should learn how to use a PC isn't the same thing as making that possible. I think that many people's lives would be improved if they spoke and wrote English, could balance a check book, could prepare healthy meals, could write poetry, etc. But to assume that the millions who don't know English will learn it because we have decreed it seems moronic.

Wouldn't it be great if instead of bluster, Bush had said he was going to build upon AmeriCorps and encourage/incentivize 50,000 young people between 22-26 to serve their country by taking a 1 year training program, and then pledging to teach English and civics to immigrants for 2 years. The classes would be free and available nights and weekends. And in return the AmeriCorps members would receive tuition reimbursement and a stipend.

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