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Open Letter to Newt Gingrich

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Mr. Gingrich

I was insulted your implication that Spanish is “the Language Of Living In The Ghetto.” I agree with your premise: English is necessary to get ahead in The United States. However, I disagree your conclusions: most of the Latino men and women I know in this country ONLY speak English. Zealot teachers have completely obliterated Spanish from our heritage. Besides, how many Americans speak more than one language fluently?

I grew up in Puerto Rico. I started English the minute I stepped in school, and French in second grade. My English teachers taught me to speak English. The other classes I took were taught in our professor’s preferred language. If the teacher was American, History would be taught in English, if the teacher was Puerto Rican, Math would be taught in Spanish.

The problem with bilingual education in the USA is: you have to expose the children to English starting in preschool—don’t wait for high school to try to “catch up”. And, please, teach them another language, any language—not just Spanish—just as vigorously alongside.

My Puerto Rican sister in Connecticut has five children all of which were educated in the US. They all speak beautiful English and have college degrees. None of them speak Spanish. My sister in Puerto Rico has two daughters. They are being educated in Puerto Rico and they are both bilingual. I speak three languages fluently and have a Medical degree.

Spanish as a second language is dying in the USA. Your statement bothers me because you make it sound like Hispanics should be ashamed to speak Spanish in the USA.
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“English is the language of business, and Spanish, don’t forget, is the language of love and romance. The only poem worth reading is the one written in Spanish, because it is the only one that sings! A truly educated person speaks more than one language fluently.” Mosaic Virus by Carlos T Mock, MD

-- Carlos T. Mock, MD
Author: Borrowing Time: A Latino Sexual Odyssey - Floricanto Press 2003. Nominated for a Stonewall Award by the American Library Association Round Table
Author: The Mosaic Virus – Floricanto Press 2007. Nominated for a Stonewall Award by the American Library Association Round Table
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Travel website: The Pink Agenda. Several Blogs. Weekly newsletter, available upon request. Publications - Fiction: Borrowing Time: A Latino Sexual Odyssey - Floricanto Press 2003. Poetry: The Refined Savage Poetry Review - Refined Savage (more...)

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Carlos, Bueno! Thank you for stating what is so ve... by mistyblue on Sunday, Apr 8, 2007 at 1:38:10 PM
Mr. Gingrich does not know English language. In fa... by Mark Sashine on Monday, Apr 9, 2007 at 9:54:06 AM
Nosotros estamos ahora un Pais con dos lengues.Whe... by Robert Chapman on Tuesday, Apr 10, 2007 at 9:07:11 AM