This article made me think. This shows what our society and culture are coming to in the United States. We need to do something about it.
Advocating for a multilingual public space may seem abstract or a “nice-to-have” feature for an ideal society. A recent event shocked me into the realization that language tolerance matters for life and death. Hatred towards languages begets real violence against others. We must all embrace and engage in public use of multiple languages for the sake of those who would be discriminated against on the basis of language.
Two weeks ago, someone was assaulted for speaking a language. A Somali woman, Asma Jama, was speaking Swahili publicly, in a restaurant with her family in Coon Rapids (a little North of Minneapolis), Minnesota. (Many Somalis speak Swahili fluently or even as their first language because they were born and/or raised in Kenya, the home of almost 2.5 million Somalis.) Hearing this non-English language upset a white woman, Jodie Marie Burchard-Risch, and…
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