The Hispanic Assimilation Problem: Bilingual Ed and Other Factors

By George Rodriguez
Volume 29, Number 4 (Summer 2019)
Issue theme: "Whatever Happened to Assimilation? - America's Uncertain Future"

Public funding for Bilingual Education programs, including “English as a Second Language” (ESL), is a hot topic in the current Texas state legislature. While we hear positive things about Bilingual Ed from its supporters, we rarely hear about how costly and divisive it is.

In January 2019, Hispanic liberals demanded an apology from NBC’s Tom Brokaw for saying that Hispanics should “work harder at assimilation.” Brokaw made this comment during an interview on NBC’s “Meet the Press” about immigration on Sunday, January 27. He was correct. The fact is that Hispanics are not melting into American society as other immigrant groups have, and Bilingual Ed is one of the reasons they aren’t.

In 1974, the U.S. Supreme Court upheld the Lau v. Nichols decision that failure to consider and adapt instruction for children who do not speak English violates federal equal protection requirements. Seven years later, in United States vs. Texas, the court ordered the state to provide specialized instruction for children with limited English proficiency.

Since then, Bilingual Ed has proliferated and become a regular part of public school programs. But what’s the impact on the nation, socially, politically, and economically?

Hispanics live next door to Latin America, and their language and culture are kept alive and refreshed by uncontrolled immigration and Spanish language media in the United States.

Bilingual Ed segregates immigrant students and delays their integration into society. Instead of encouraging and helping them to assimilate, they are often taught to be victims of a “racist” society. It is government-approved linguistic apartheid that prevents Spanish-speaking immigrants from assimilating and integrating.

Also, Bilingual Ed has become part of the vast “Educational Industrial Complex” that seeks to advance its agenda and increase its liberal political and social influence. The Complex is an informal alliance between the nation’s educators, education institutions, and education advocates, including those who support Bilingual Ed and all minority-sensitive programs. They also work together to keep and gain more public funding.

Illegal immigration is also fueling support for more Bilingual Ed, particularly with the arrival of illegal alien minors. According to ICE/Border Patrol data, in fiscal year (FY) 2017, 41,435 minors were apprehended, and in FY2018, 50,036. So far in FY 2019 to date (2018 October-January 2019) there were 20,123 apprehensions.

These figures do not include the “family units” apprehended that have some school-aged children. These new immigrant children will receive some form of bilingual education, which delays their integration and learning the English-language if they stay in the U.S.

Another factor that supports Bilingual Ed and stymies Hispanic assimilation is Spanish language media, which also retards language integration. Madison Avenue ad executives and social scientists claim that Spanish language media is necessary to “serve” Hispanics with America’s products. However, there is a significant growth in the Spanish-language dominant population because of uncontrolled immigration, Bilingual Ed, and the lack of need to use English even to buy milk.

According to a 2015 report by Instituto Cervantes, eight percent of the U.S. population (25.1 million) is considered Limited-English proficient (LEP), while Spanish speakers accounted for 64 percent (16.2 million) of the country’s total LEP population. Those figures show which linguistic group is not “melting” into American society. Finally, liberal political correctness encourages multiculturalism, which condemns American values and encourages ethnic and racial nationalism. It discourages Hispanics from assimilating and justifies ethnic separatism.

Race-baiting Hispanic Texas Democrat Congressman Joaquin Castro from San Antonio called Brokaw “ignorant” regarding his comment about Hispanics and assimilation. However, opposing assimilation is ignorant, and it doesn’t help Hispanic immigrants at all.

Democrats want to play race politics with Hispanics. They want to herd them together to make them dependent on their political bosses.

Assimilation into American society by all immigrant groups is important because we are such a racially, ethnically, and religiously diverse nation. Language should be a common bond that unites Americans, along with respect for the Constitution and the law.

America is the most successful ethnically and culturally diverse nation in history. Of course we are not perfect. But, the efforts to divide up our society, in this case with language, threatens both our country and our culture, which was built by diversity, but maintained by shared values. We can perpetuate our cultural success more easily when we agree on, and share, our values in our common language: English.”

References (Article written by Kimberly Scamman, September 4, 2018.)

About the author

George Rodriguez, El Conservador, is a talk show host on KLUP-930 AM radio, and blogger on Facebook, Twitter, and the website. He is also a commentator on national Spanish and English news programs, including Fox News and Univision. His book, El Conservador: Conservative Opinions, is also available on Amazon.