Bill makes it harder in Arizona to use language that isn’t English
PHOENIX - State senators voted Monday to put a roadblock in the path of state officials who want to talk to customers and constituents in their native languages.
SCR 1035 preserves the essence of a 2006 voter-approved constitutional amendment, which requires all official actions of the state to be conducted only in English. And it continues an existing exception that permits public workers to have “unofficial” talks with people in other languages.
But the measure would forbid those conversations unless the other person asks to talk in another language for that specific conversation. And it doesn’t obligate the government “to use the language requested.”
Sen. Don Shooter, R-Yuma, said he’s not trying to be punitive. He also said it’s not aimed at any particular group.
Instead, Shooter said he is trying to underline that English is the unifying language of the country.
“It’s language,” he said. “It’s our common bond.”
Nor, he said, is it aimed at use of Spanish.
“If an Italian came in the office you wouldn’t expect the state of Arizona to issue a response in Italian, nor in German or Swahili or Russian or any other thing,” he said.
“So it’s not what people are making it out to be,” Shooter continued. “It’s just saying that if you come here, you need to work with us and be part of our culture, too.”
When he says “we” and “our culture”, I wonder if he is including these Arizona citizens:
This is a list of all tribal entities in Arizona currently registered with the Bureau of Indian Affairs.Or these:
* Ak Chin Indian Community of the Maricopa (Ak Chin) Indian Reservation
* Cocopah Tribe of Arizona
* Colorado River Indian Tribes of the Colorado River Indian Reservation, Arizona and California
* Fort McDowell Yavapai Nation
* Fort Mojave Indian Tribe of Arizona, California & Nevada
* Gila River Indian Community
* Havasupai Tribe of the Havasupai Reservation
* Hopi Tribe of Arizona
* Hualapai Indian Tribe of the Hualapai Indian Reservation
* Kaibab Band of Paiute Indians of the Kaibab Indian Reservation
* Navajo Nation, Arizona, New Mexico & Utah
* Pascua Yaqui Tribe of Arizona
* Quechan Tribe of the Fort Yuma Indian Reservation, California & Arizona
* Salt River Pima-Maricopa Indian Community of the Salt River Reservation
* San Carlos Apache Tribe of the San Carlos Reservation
* San Juan Southern Paiute Tribe of Arizona
* Tohono O’odham Nation of Arizona
* Tonto Apache Tribe of Arizona
* White Mountain Apache Tribe of the Fort Apache Reservation
* Yavapai-Apache Nation of the Camp Verde Indian Reservation
* Yavapai-Prescott Tribe of the Yavapai Reservation
Language other than English spoken at home, pct age 5+, 2000 Arizona: 25.9% US total: 17.9%I think “work with us” means “Speak English, damnit! It’s all I know!”