Should not speaking English ban you for running for public office
I was listening to conservative talk radio and the talk show host was angry that there were Spanish emergency instructions given by an airline, right after boarding an airplane. I wondered, what a fricking idiot. He is upset that he has to hear Spanish, even though it might save the lives of those who are fluent in Spanish but not English? This is a big deal for him? Fine, I get many on the rightwing hate the Spanish language being spoken within their hearing. They forget that their own ancestors often didnt' speak a word of English when they got off the ship in the 19th century.
If those same immigrants were old enough, they often barely learned that much English by the time they died. Their children of course, became fluent in it. Since windbags such as this host can't remember immigrant ancestors from the 19th century, a mythology has been created that current immigrant groups are less likely to become fluent in English.
No, here in Milwaukee in the 19th century, many newspapers were in German. Church services were in German. If they had radio stations at that time, they would have been in German. Some of these native German speakers were my own great, great, great, great grandparents.
This was a topic on his show because in Arizona a woman running for a city council position was barred from running because she was deemed not to know enough English. She knows some English, but there she isn't that fluent with the language. This begs the question, how much of a language does someone have to know, before they can be said to know the language? I took several years of German, I can't really converse in it other than in simple sentences.
Now, this is a U.S. citizen and there are people who want to vote for her. They aren't barred from voting (if a U.S. citizen) if they are not entirely fluent in the English language. Should it not be their choice who they vote? Could they not weigh her fluency? Yes, governmental officials should be fluent in English, but I have deep concerns when the government puts up restrictions on who can run for office. After all, we don't have an official language in the U.S.
Because, if the government can restrict who can run for office based on their fluency of English, want else can they use to bar citizens?