Archive for the ‘Language’ Category

What percentage of Americans speak a language other than English at home?

January 31, 2019

More important: does it matter?
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Earlier this week, liberal newser Tom Brokaw set off a firestorm when he dared to say on MTP:

“Hispanic immigrants need to do a better job of assimilating to the United States and teaching their children to speak English.”

The backlash — from the left no less – was fast and brutal.

Brokaw was accused of being a racist (really?) and of being insensitive to immigrants’ culture.

So, Brokaw backpedaled from his statement and apologized

Yipes.

Let’s take a step back and look at some data.

According to a WaPo analysis of Census Dept. data, about 1 in 5 U.S. households don’t speak English at home.

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That’s up from 1 in 10 back in the 1980s.

A pretty steep increase that begs a bigger question: does it matter?

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CNN: “Speaking English” limits immigration to people from Great Britain & Australia … say, what?

August 3, 2017

Let’s connect a couple of dots today …

In case you missed it, abrasive Trump policy wonk Stephen Miller got into a heated exchange with CNN’s Jim Acosta.

Miller was briefing the press on President Trump’s RAISE Act, which would move critical skills immigrants to the head of the line and require that immigrants learn English before they come to the United States.

Acosta challenged the English language requirement and asked:

“Are we just going to bring in people from Great Britain and Australia?”

Miller’s response:

“I have to honestly say, I am shocked at your statement that you think that only people from Great Britain and Australia would know English”.

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The 2nd dot:

I’m into infographics these days and, earlier this week, a friend sent me a great one.

Initially, I was just intrigued by the infograhic’s structure and style.

Suddenly, its content has taken on a higher relevance.

Below is a the featured component of the infographic — a cool pie chart that proportionately depicts the “world’s most spoken languages”.

English is the modestly sized yellow section in the top left corner.

Point to CNN’s Acosta, right?

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Not so fast, mes amis.

Let’s look at a couple of other parts of the full  infographic ….

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Trumpspeak: It’s all about the way he talks …

May 8, 2017

Some folks can stand to listen to the President talk … and some find it refreshing.

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Great piece in the Washington Post by Barton Swaim author of “The Speechwriter: A Brief Education in Politics.”

His basic conclusion: “The most distinctive thing about Trump … is the structure of his language.”

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Swain says that Trump — nnlike most politicians –doesn’t speak in political rhetoric; he speaks in punchlines – short jabs, not convoluted passages. He lays it out there and let’s you buy in or opt out.

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Trumpspeak: It’s all about the way he talks …

September 23, 2016

Since the debate is coming up, it’s time to pull from the archives ….

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Great piece in the Washington Post by Barton Swaim author of “The Speechwriter: A Brief Education in Politics.”

His basic conclusion: “The most distinctive about Trump … is the structure of his language.”

clip_image002

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Swain says that Trump — nnlike most politicians –doesn’t speak in political rhetoric; he speaks in punchlines – short jabs, not convoluted passages.

(more…)

Trumpspeak: It’s all about the way he talks …

July 22, 2016

Trump’s speech last night had some clear takeaways: (1) law & order  (2) anti-terrorism  (3) outreach to both LGBTQs and Evangelicals (4) dignity and economic hope for the working class.

The speech was civilized .. which was probably disappointing those folks who were rooting for a crash & burn.

My opinion: he came across as a credible “blue-collar billionaire” …  has genuine empathy for the working class …. still, a bit rough around the edges.

 Breaking: CNN “snap poll” reports that 74% of viewers had a favorable reaction to Trump’s speech.

The speech reminded me of a great piece in the Washington Post by Barton Swaim author of “The Speechwriter: A Brief Education in Politics.”

His basic conclusion: “The most distinctive about Trump … is the structure of his language.”

clip_image002

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Swain says that Trump — nnlike most politicians –doesn’t speak in political rhetoric; he speaks in punchlines – short jabs, not convoluted passages.

(more…)

Trumpspeak: It’s all about the way he talks …

September 23, 2015

Great piece in the Washington Post by Barton Swaim author of “The Speechwriter: A Brief Education in Politics.”

His basic conclusion: “The most distinctive about Trump … is the structure of his language.”

clip_image002

======

Swain says that Trump — nnlike most politicians –doesn’t speak in political rhetoric; he speaks in punchlines – short jabs, not convoluted passages.

(more…)