Hey Radicals, I’m back from CPAC and man, do I have a lot stuff to write about! There should be a pretty good stack of articles coming from me in the next couple of days, the first of which being this piece; so be sure to check back in tomorrow for more stuff!
English is the language I speak, it is the language I grew up with, and the language I enjoy the most.
I am biased, but I think English is the greatest language ever, even with its numerous faults. That makes me decidedly Pro-English. It doesn’t, however, make me Pro-“ProEnglish”.
As I wandered about CPAC’s exhibition hall, smiling and making a general nuisance of myself to the booth owners (something I’ll be going into more detail in a later article) I happened upon a nook labeled “ProEnglish”. Being a fan of the language, I stopped and talked to the guy minding the premises. My first question was pretty simple: “What is it you guys do?” It was met with a kind of complex answer: “Well, we’re for making English the official language of the United States!”
You know, I can understand how people can be deluded into believing that stricter gun laws lead to fewer murderous rampages, or that raising taxes on the rich would help to pay down our debt faster; those seem like reasonable solutions to serious problems at face value, while real solutions look quite counter-intuitive to most laypeople. What I don’t get, however, is how people who ostensibly want to further the conservative agenda can think that putting time and energy into something as pointless as making English the official language of the United States might be productive.
“What would that achieve?” I asked the booth minder. His reply? “Oh, it’ll cut back on the amount of time and money it takes to run Government because official documents would only be available in English.” I responded that while I admired their desire to trim the cost of government, the plan they were pushing really only amounted to maybe a few hundred million dollars worth of cuts at best and a pretty big waste of time compared to, say, trying to get Obamacare defunded. He got kind of dejected after that and halfheartedly offered the idea that having a national language would help to create cultural unity for America.
Yes, he actually said that. Because we can totally legislate unity.
His theory, while highly flawed, amused me, and I listened to him talk about how cultures with multiple languages have repeatedly failed and caused violence, etc. From there he went into extolling the virtues and benefits of knowing English.
And then a question popped into my head.
“Do you guys go into heavily non-english speaking areas and offer programs to help people learn English?” “I mean, what’s more Pro-English than that, right?” The booth-minder got quiet all of a sudden, gears clearly cranking in his head, eventually getting around to replying “No, but that’s a really good idea.”
And it IS a really good idea!
Outreach and proactive solutions are key to the Republican party becoming relevant again, and becoming English “evangelists” certainly fits both of those goals far better than rallying behind a piece of legislation that would instantly (and of course erroneously) be labeled as racist and elitist.
That’s why I hope that at least some of the conversation Mr. Booth-minder and I had finds its way to the guys behind ProEnglish. Because at its best it could be a great asset and help to our cause, but at its worst, it becomes another organization on our side that can easily be Alinskyed and used against us.
And that’s bad news no matter what language it’s in.