‘This Is Alabama. We Speak English.’

Tim James, son of former Alabama governor Fob James, is now running for his dad’s old seat as governor. One of the platforms that James-The-Younger is running on is to reduce the number of languages the state’s drivers exams are offered in…. from 12, to 1.

Gawker is not as kind in its assessment of James’ campaign ad:
Republican Tim James is running for governor of Alabama, and he hates foreign languages. In this ad, he sneeringly announces, “This is Alabama. We speak English. If you want to live here, learn it.” What a jerk.
Other states — including Georgia — are considering similar measures.

How do I feel? Well, if I moved to Quebec or Chihuahua, I’d be expected to learn French or Spanish (for Canada or Mexico, in the example) in order to get a license there. And on a second note, I have to point out the sheer cost of developing and maintaining a full set of documentation based on multiple languages, when most states and municipalities are facing a huge cash crunch. That is money that can be better used in other areas that are hurting quite a bit.

Based on that, requiring English here is certainly not out of line. And no, it’s not racist, it’s a matter of sheer logic and rational thinking. If you choose to come here, it is up to you to be able to be able to communicate on a high enough level to operate on a day-to-day basis. After all, you chose to come here. We did not choose to have you to come.

And if that does not suit you, to quote an old Atlanta adage (and long-time ad campaign), Delta is ready when you are.

Welcome to America. Welcome South, Brother.


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