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(British PM) David Cameron says that immigrants should learn English

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Newsjock Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-13-11 07:37 PM
Original message
(British PM) David Cameron says that immigrants should learn English
Source: The Guardian

David Cameron will warn that immigrants unable to speak English or unwilling to integrate have created a "kind of discomfort and disjointedness" which has disrupted communities across Britain.

In his most outspoken speech on immigration since becoming prime minister, Cameron will blame Labour for allowing immigration to become "too high" and for adopting an approach that allowed the British National party to flourish.

The prime minister will open his speech, in Hampshire, by saying that immigration is a hugely emotive subject that must be handled with sensitivity. But he will then say that Labour presided over the "largest influx" of immigration in British history, which saw 2.2 million more people settling in Britain between 1997 and 2009 than leaving to live abroad.

... "So real integration takes time. That's why, when there have been significant numbers of new people arriving in neighbourhoods, perhaps not able to speak the same language as those living there, on occasions not really wanting or even willing to integrate, that has created a kind of discomfort and disjointedness in some neighbourhoods. This has been the experience for many people in our country and I believe it is untruthful and unfair not to speak about it and address it."

Read more: http://www.guardian.co.uk/politics/2011/apr/14/david-ca...
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alp227 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-13-11 08:31 PM
Response to Original message
1. well DUH! but "too many" immigrants now? that's a bit harsh n/t
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lunasun Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-13-11 09:43 PM
Response to Original message
2. Oh boohoo
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Rage for Order Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-13-11 10:35 PM
Response to Original message
3. Preach it Mr. Cameron!
Edited on Wed Apr-13-11 10:35 PM by Rage for Order
We need people to stand up to support and defend rationality.
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dipsydoodle Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-14-11 04:09 AM
Response to Original message
4. Size matters
Edited on Thu Apr-14-11 04:12 AM by dipsydoodle
The UK is only about the same size as your States of Michigan, Wyoming and Oregon. Of those Michigan appears to have the highest population at c. 10 million. The population of the UK is over 60 million giving it the highest density of population in the EU next to Holland and Malta. There is a case for shutting immigration down totally but that's not being done - its being contained. The least that new immigrants can do is speak the fucking language.

Why is that asking too much ?
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leftynyc Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-14-11 04:11 AM
Response to Original message
5. He's right
I don't see anything controversal here.
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RebelOne Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-14-11 11:38 AM
Response to Reply #5
17. Ditto. I agree. n/t
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pampango Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-14-11 04:42 AM
Response to Original message
6. Nothing new. Standard conservative talking point. Used on every immigrant group in the US
(Germans, Italians, Mexicans, Chinese, etc.) throughout our history. Immigrants want to improve their lives (uprooting your life is not easy) and realize that learning the local language is important to making a better life. Adult immigrants have a harder time learning new languages than do children and the second generation will almost all be fluent in the local language.

"Labour presided over the "largest influx" of immigration in British history, which saw 2.2 million more people settling in Britain between 1997 and 2009 than leaving to live abroad." - Not surprising that the political left is more friendly towards immigration. The right then 'wants their country back' and trots out the usual anti-immigrant sentiments.

"Labour inflamed the issue by accusing (immigration) critics of racism while at the same time pandering to the hard right." - Accusing the BNP and EDL of racism is telling it like it is, not pandering to the far right. The latter is what Sarkozy does in France.

"The speech may add to coalition tensions after the Liberal Democrats distanced themselves from the prime minister's language. Nick Clegg saw the speech which he "noted rather than approved"." - Hey, that's what happens when you join a coalition government led by the conservative party."

"Cameron will say that Britain has benefited hugely from immigration. "Go into any hospital and you'll find people from Uganda, India and Pakistan who are caring for our sick and vulnerable. Go into schools and universities and you'll find teachers from all over the world, inspiring our young people."" - Immigrants do all of this? Doesn't sound like their "unable to speak English" is a typical problem with immigrants.

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dipsydoodle Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-14-11 05:24 AM
Response to Reply #6
7. The actual subject was
those unable to speak English or unwilling to integrate.
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pampango Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-14-11 06:49 AM
Response to Reply #7
8. Agreed. That's what conservatives do; they use subsets of immigrants to create divisions.
Sarkozy in France is using the burka ban to appeal to the far right, even though it's estimated that less than one-tenth of one percent (a tiny subset) of Muslims wear the burka in France. Bush I used Willie Horton (a "scary" Black ex-convict and a tiny subset of Blacks) to scare white voters. The tea party uses instances of illegal immigrants committing crimes to taint that whole group even though their rate of crimes is much lower than that of "real" Americans.

It's not so much that the conservatives are "right" or "wrong" about their stereotyping of certain subsets immigrants. It's that they use these talking points to divide the rest of us and for their own electoral advantage.

In France Sarkozy would like for the French to focus on the tiny minority of Muslim immigrants that wear a burka to distract them from the real problems his administration has caused or not dealt with. In the UK, while Cameron acknowledges that the country has "benefited hugely" from immigration, he is compelled to throw a bone to the right (and cast a stone at the left - "Labour presided over the "largest influx" of immigration in British history") by pointing to some subset of immigrants on whom the folks who "want their country back" can focus. I didn't see Cameron cite any statistics on how many immigrants can't speak English. He says "on occasion" there are some who don't want to learn the language or integrate. "On occasion" doesn't sound like a large number, but are we talking about a "Sarkozy-like" one-tenth of 1% or 10% or 25%?
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WatsonT Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-14-11 09:52 AM
Response to Reply #6
15. Refusing to assimilate/learn the language
fuels that anger.

They should learn the language.

Don't you agree?

"Immigrants do all of this? Doesn't sound like their "unable to speak English" is a typical problem with immigrants"

Bit of a difference between professionals and unskilled laborers don't you think?

Immigrants aren't all educated doctors and engineers who speak fluent english. You're doing the same thing you accuse the far right of doing but in reverse: taking a small subset and applying that to all immigrants.
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Xithras Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-14-11 03:00 PM
Response to Reply #6
19. I have less of a problem with it in England than I would in the U.S.
Edited on Thu Apr-14-11 03:01 PM by Xithras
The U.S. is a nation of immigrants, where nobody really has the right to declare one language "superior" to any other. At one point, there were more German speakers in this country than English speakers. At another point, the French speakers matched the number of English speakers. That's how immigrant countries work. There is no "native" language.

Things are a little different in European countries IMHO. In England, English is the native language. In France, French is the native language. Those are the languages of the indigenous peoples of those nations. People who move to those countries really SHOULD learn the native language. To not do so would be like me moving to Mexico, refusing to learn Spanish, and insisting that they communicate with me in English. It's rude. It's also something that happens every day, which is where the traveller term "Ugly American" came from.

If I were to retire to Mexico, you can be certain that I'd work on my Spanish first.
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bemildred Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-14-11 07:00 AM
Response to Original message
9. Get over it Dave, their kids will learn English even if they do not. nt
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Nihil Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-14-11 07:40 AM
Response to Original message
10. Stopped clock syndrome.
Even a complete dork like Cameron can say something sensible once in a while.

Doesn't give me any confidence that he's changed from being the bastard offspring
of Maggie and Tony ...

:shrug:
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cbdo2007 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-14-11 08:24 AM
Response to Original message
11. Only if they want to be able to communicate with people.
It doesn't do either of us any good if I have a customer who only speaks spanish.
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pampango Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-14-11 08:47 AM
Response to Original message
12. "Cameron denied that the Coalition is split over immigration after Cable accused him of inflaming
extremism. Ironic since Cameron accused the left, in the OP linked story, of having "inflamed the issue by accusing critics of racism while at the same time pandering to the hard right."

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/immigration/8450...

"Mr Cameron also blamed the welfare state for creating a generation of work-shy Britons, leaving the jobs market open for migrants. Figures show that of the 2.5 million extra people in employment since 1997, three quarters were foreign-born workers.

He argued that it is not a case of "immigrants coming over here and taking our jobs" because some migrants have created wealth and jobs.

He said that the "real issue" is "migrants are filling gaps in the labour market left wide open by a welfare system that for years has paid British people not to work".

"Put simply, we will never control immigration properly unless we tackle welfare dependency, he said.

Sounds like a real conservative. Blaming the "welfare state" for a "generation of work-shy Britons". In an odd, non-US style twist, he goes on to migrants have "created wealth and jobs" filling labor gaps created "by a welfare system that for years has paid British people not to work"". (Here the teabaggers worry that the illegal immigrants are the ones that go on welfare and otherwise soak up public benefits. Apparently not a major concern for conservatives in the UK.) I don't know how long he will last as PM in the UK, but he may have a future in conservative politics in the US afterwards. ;)
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bemildred Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-14-11 09:26 AM
Response to Reply #12
13. It is so amusing when these well off toads start talking about other people not wanting to work. nt
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WatsonT Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-14-11 09:50 AM
Response to Original message
14. They should
then again so should the average Brit.
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onehandle Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-14-11 09:53 AM
Response to Original message
16. When is Cameron going to don one of Thatcher's 'sensible' dresses? nt
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KamaAina Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-14-11 02:33 PM
Response to Original message
18. News flash: Most of them want to.
In NYC, for instance, about every other subway car has an ad card reading !Aprenda Ingles! Any number of private language schools are doing quite well teaching ESL, because the few classes the city offers are overwhelmed with demand.
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