Sunday, November 12, 2006

And another thing!

Pursuant to my post below James Taranto points out that Wisconsin residents actually voted down gay marriage while putting Democrats in office. Guy named Pat Caddell said the same thing about Ohio on Special Report after the 2004 elections. (I never got that about that about Democrats -- how can they be so hypocritical as to include Christian Conservatives (like John Kerry) who are against gay rights in their party?!)

Anyway, Taranto also wondered after the 2004 election whether or not Kedwards, as he calls them, in their presidential debates, were also trying to stir up Christian Conservative Democrats by gay-baiting.


Anonymous luther said...

Not to stick up for Kerry, but I recall him making statements that his personal belief was that marriage should be between a man and a woman, but that from a legislative perspective he didn't think his beliefs, nor anyone elses, should be imposed via law.

Do you actually have information that he wants anti-gay rights legislation?

1:37 PM  
Blogger Nancy said...

Yes, from the '04 election. Here is the president's view; and here is Kerry's view a few days later.

2:57 PM  
Anonymous luther said...

Hmmm. The word "fundamentally" is a key to the vagueness of his statement. I do distinctly remember him commented during the debates that he felt legislators should be able to separate their personal beliefs from the laws they legislate. But this is probably another example of "flip-flopping". He was doing his best to pander to everyone and be very vague about his stances.

As to the Dems being “so hypocritical” – you honestly don’t think the same of the Republicans? Why all the “outing” and such that you seem to be very upset about right now … politics is WAR … and both parties have been playing very nasty for quite some time now. The parties are much more focused on winning that anything else. A major part of the Republican/”conservative” agenda has been based on crushing gay rights – so it shouldn’t be any surprise that Dems/”liberals” would jump all over any situation when they do find hypocrisy amongst the conservative ranks. Both sides play this game. And it also shouldn’t be a surprise that there are devout Christians who vote for, or run as, Democrats. This comes back to my pet peeve of pigeon holing everyone into one of two vague and usually inaccurate labels.

Per your link about Bush:

Emphasis added. The story notes he would not have supported such a law in Texas.
So was Bush being dishonest and vague with his statements?

“states ought to be able to have the right to pass laws that enable people to be able to have rights like others.”
Notice the careful word choice here – just because he thinks states ought to have the right to pass such laws does not mean he endorses or wants them to do so.

So anyway my real point is just that both parties are very guilty of hypocrisy and dirty tricks. Both parties have good and moral people, and both parties have bad and imoral people.

8:28 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"So anyway my real point is just that both parties are very guilty of hypocrisy and dirty tricks. Both parties have good and moral people, and both parties have bad and imoral people. "

Well said, and certainly still the best system anywhere. Hands down. Bar none.

Forgive the veering off subject but, Nancy, what does this Texas girl think of the current haps down there?:

9:22 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Anonymous = Dana.

9:23 PM  
Blogger Nancy said...

Oh, no, Luther, I totally agree with you. I was trying, and failing, to be funny. Yes, I wish Repubs didn't pander to homophobia or any anti-gay politiking, but my point above is that Dems do it too, although, most people assume only the Republican party does.

What I come away with on Kerry and Bush is that they are both pro-civil union, but anti-gay marriage, and both are also in favor of state legislatures deciding the debate.

9:35 PM  
Blogger Nancy said...

Hey, Dana!

It's the first I've heard of it. I'm terrible about reading local news!

Problem is I know little of the problems municipalities have with illegals. I can certainly imagine the strain in the schools having student taught an inner-city high school, but I have a lot of sympathy for people who want a part of American opportunities.

My poorly informed opinion is that our economic market allows for illegal immigration. (Don't know if that fence is going to work.) When we as an economic entity no longer need illegal immigrants, they will stop coming, or when they don't need us because they themselves have lower unemployment.

The English as the official language thing I don't understand, and I don't see how they would implement it.

I see this story quotes no pro-ordinance person from Farmer's Branch.

Husband just found Miyazaki movie on TV we haven't seen. Later!

9:57 PM  
Blogger Nancy said...

Shoot, he's switched it to Conan, the Barbarian.

9:58 PM  
Blogger Nancy said...

If you're still reading this thread, Dana, this morning I heard on the radio the Farmer's Branch city councilman who proposed the legislation you asked about.

He cited $24million in non-emergency care at one particular hospital to illegal immigration and $16million for the school district to build pre-K schools to teach kids English.

9:02 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

wow, Nancy. That's a lotta dough...something's gotta give. I thought perhaps being in Texas close to the border that you might have a sense of the collective pov down there....


7:02 PM  
Anonymous luther's conservative side said...

Not sure what our legislators having in mind – but I personally would like to see English declared our national language. This doesn’t mean that people can’t speak other languages as they see fit – but tax payer funding items like voting, legislation, schooling, etc. should all be in English only. We should not be bending over backwards to accommodate those who move here and who simply don’t want to learn English. So is it fair if that sets immigrants back in school or limits there abilities here in other ways? I personally think it is fair. If I moved to Germany for example, I wouldn’t expect to function very well there unless I learned German – and it wouldn’t be realistic to think that the German people somehow owed me anything and therefore must make it easy on me if I choose to be illiterate in their language.

7:39 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Just today I gave a Spanish speaking parent at our school comprehensive info on how to register for FREE English classses. She's been here 11 months and has picked up virtually no Spanish. Through an interpreter I explained the extreme availability classes, times, locales, etc. She wasnot the least bit interested and said she would just rather speak Spanish. And so it goes....

9:41 PM  
Anonymous farmers branch said...

Now if the rest of the country will follow our lead ...

11:34 PM  
Blogger Nancy said...

NOOOOOOOOO! Not Luther's conservative side!!!!!!!!

Well, you make some good points. But, query, as my grad school law professor used to say, if we know that people who emigrate here simply don't learn the language* (no matter how much we make English classes available to them and even though their children eventually do), aren't we then disenfranchising new citizens if we don't print voter stuff in Spanish?

* Sources: they say and I've read.

7:22 AM  
Anonymous luther said...

Yes ... it is a dark and evil place but it is oh so seductive ...

Well if I'm not mistaken when people follow the legal process of becoming a citizen they have to show some proficiency in English to "pass the test". But the people that bypass that process by sneaking over and giving birth to a child aren't then forced through the same process. Now you have the child who is instantly an American citizen, so it gets more complicated to treat the parent like other illegals who haven’t given birth on American soil. Now if we deport them we have to deport an American citizen – their child. Those people now have no incentive to learn English or to play by any of the normal immigration rules - and we then bend over backwards catering to them. My thought isn't that the government would disenfranchise them by printing ballots only in English - they would disenfranchise themselves by not learning our national language. To return to my analogy, if I move to Germany and refuse to learn German is the German government disenfranchising me? I think not.

The alternative is that we won’t stop at Spanish and will have to start catering to more and more minority groups and other languages and spending lots and lots more tax payer dollars in education, translating, etc. Declaring a national language is, in my humble opinion, a very pragmatic and sensible approach. To me this isn’t racist or an attempt to suppress anyone – no one is suppressed except those that choose to suppress themselves. I would also expect this to be normal for most countries on our great planet earth.

With all that said I also believe it is a futile dream of mine to have English our national language - but isn’t it better than not dreaming at all? :)

6:09 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I recently watched a piece covering the Vietnamese vote people. What different sort of immigrant they were. There was a need, and overwhelming desire to become assimilated into American life and culture. Lanuage was the first step in the process as they began to relocate. I remember going to a park in Orange County during that time and I met a man and his little son who were boat people. I had been reading and the little guy was playing next to where I was sitting. He was amusing and we played and the dad kept trying to speak to me. I took out pencil and paper and began writing simple nouns and helping him say them. ANything that was nearby that could give visual definition....anyway, we met there for a week and then I never saw him there again. My point being, though, he was a microcosm of the group as a whole that really immersed themselves in the language, culture, and economic realm of their new country. And perhaps that is the biggest difference, America became their new country, their new homeland.

p.s. to your law professor, I would say, do we not willingly help the disenfranchisement of the new immigrants if we don't stress the empowerment and freedom that comes from being able to freely converse in their new country's language? Do we not help keep them at a place of weakness only to be taken advantage of?


7:01 PM  
Blogger Nancy said...

Well if I'm not mistaken when people follow the legal process of becoming a citizen they have to show some proficiency in English to "pass the test".

I did not know that.

It's a shame that people try to morph this legal vs. illegal argument into a racism argument; I don't think that's fair.

If the law is that immigrants have to show proficiency in English, then we should enforce the law. If Americans want to change that law, then we should have a referendum.

But what about the law of economics. Some argue that the only way to stem the flow of illegals is to improve Mexico's economy. They won't be interested in coming if they can find good work at home. Many who come don't want to be Americans, they want to return to Mexico after they're finished working. (Their kids probably feel differently.)

John Derbyshire pointed out once that we already have about 13 kinds of temporary work visas; should we expand them?

Dana, your point is brilliant and crystallizes some of my thoughts about the English language. Anyone who wants to be successful must have a command of the English language. If I had the courage to teach English again, I'd try to drive that point home. Language is like a wardrobe -- you use different styles in different situations, and you need to be able to pull out standard formal and informal English for employment purposes, among other things.

Aren't a lot of Latin Americans rejecting bilingual education in California because their kids are graduating without being able to speak standard English?

Or did I dream that?

9:13 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

There is alwaqys a converse to a query...the thing with the language issue is you cannot be a fully active participant in the economic world, culturally assimilate, or stand up for yourself if you cannot communicate with the greater population. That is the reality of everyday life in America. I stayed in Europe when I was younger. Hitting Holland and being totally unfamiliar with the language (as nothing written remotely resembles English) I was at a complete loss in the market trying to find certain products for women. Without pictures, without language it was absolutely futile. To my rescue - a 14 year old boy who happened to be walking down the aisle and noticed my puzzlement and said he spoke a little English....thus being terribly embarrassed myself, I further embarrassed him by explaining what I needed. He never met my eye but pointed to what I needed. It was horrible to feel so unable to communicate and to have no clue what was being said. If I were living there (or anywhere else) I would do nothing before mastering the language. What a overwhelming position of helplessness. And how much more troubling it is that Mexicans who are so close to our country, and have so many American businesses, etc., will not take advantage of the immense availability of classes and gift that English is.


9:49 PM  
Anonymous darth luther said...

To me there are at least two separate issues:
1) The national language thing. For numerous reasons this just makes sense to me.
2) Illegal immigration. A more complex topic – but one that obviously needs to be addressed. I heard an interesting idea on the radio about declaring the millions of illegal aliens as permanent residents – but not granting them citizenship. An interesting thought as long as permanent residents don’t have all of the rights of citizenship. But then the question becomes – just what rights do they have as permanent residents?

But I’ll be surprised if either of these is addressed in my lifetime. What will probably happen is that in a hundred years or so we will be overrun by Hispanic immigrants who will then vote into law Spanish as the national language.

10:00 PM  

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