Friday, June 09, 2006

English to be our national language...

And what was it before?

Yet recent Congressional action adopting English as our lingua franca has sparked outrage among the literati: Fr. Greeley's reaction in this morning's Chicago Sun-Times is typical.

I guess they fear that we'll descend to the level of the French, who routinely, and with impeccable comic effect, try to purge non-French words from common usage. Nothing escapes the French 'language police' -- even the term for e-mail had to be appropriately frenchified.

Yet, somehow, I don't see latter day Edwin Newmans or William Safires campaigning to strip English of invading words like 'pizza' or 'taco.' It would be far better to acquaint the allegedly English-speaking masses in this country with the richness (dare I say, the glorious pastiche) of the English language -- and move their vocabulary beyond George Carlin's Seven Dirty Words.

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