Since we are the world's leader in a bunch of stuff, not health care, BTW, we don't need no stinking foreign languages falling like cherry blossoms from the lips of our young. Of course, the young ultimately become old, but by that time they learn that nothing else counts in the world except American English. I will admit that I studied, loosely, Spanish, for two years in high school. I entered college knowing I would needed to study two years of one language or three years of two, at the university level, in order to graduate with a BA from the College of Letters & Science. While I was in school at that university, they changed the language requirement, actually eliminated it. Before they did that I tried German (I dropped out after the six week exam); French (I passed the first semester, but took it during the 2nd semester, therefore forgetting it all during the summer & had to drop it the following fall, although the absolutely beautiful Senegalese TA was almost enough to keep me in class. I'm not sure if 4-5 quarts of beer each summer night had anything to do with it.); & Chinese (I dropped out of school before that term ended. The Chinese prof, however, was the only teacher to actually call me on the phone to ask if I was all right. I'm sure that his concern showed through in other ways & I actually learned a lot from him during our short term relationship. BTW, we began the class learning mama.) Anyway, we should not have to cut foreign languages from our public schools. I understand the budget pressure these schools are under. A local school, even if cutting all sports, professional development, music, art, etc., would still fall $150,000 short of keeping their budget as it was last year. A friend, Shutterwi, & I believe the school board & administration should cut the budget that much. Maybe the dumbshit wingers, unable to watch their granddaughter a play b-ball, or listen to their grandson sing at the Xmas concert, would come to understand just what is involved in a free, public education. The social commitment means, of course, it is free for the student, but costs the taxpayers. The unfortunate problem is that the state & federal governments have decided that public education ranks below an illegal war(s). So school boards, make the cuts to satisfy the wingers. It will hurt people in the short term, but it will also put the education mess in perspective. Whether that will be enough to educate & satisfy the haters, well, that remains to be seen.
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