Are we in danger of losing our common language?
One-fifth of people in the U.S. speak a foreign language , according to a report being released Monday by the Center for Immigration Studies, which found Arabic and Urdu — the national language of Pakistan — among the fastest-growing.
The report found that nearly half of all California school-age children speak a language other than English at , as do a third of Texans and Nevadans, according to the report, which is based on Census Bureau numbers.
Three decades ago, 10 percent of residents spoke a foreign language at home, but a surge of immigration and changing cultural patterns have sent the percentage skyrocketing. More than 40 percent of those who spoke a foreign language at home said they speak English less than proficiently.
Steven Camarota, co-author of the report, said the increase in foreign language speakers isn’t an accident, but rather the result of policy decisions that could be reversed by Congress.
“Allowing in over one million new legal immigrants a year and to a lesser extent tolerating illegal immigration has important implications for preserving a common language,” Mr. Camarota said. “For too long, we have given little consideration to whether continuing this level of immigration, mostly legal, hinders the assimilation of immigrants and their children."
Note the part about speaking English "less than proficiently." I don't thin it's the sheer number - 20 percent instead of 10 pecent - that's the problem. It's the attitude that learning English isn't important. Half of Californians! Man!