YOUR VIEWS Letters to the Editor

Time to learn Spanish

June 3, 2014 

This is in response to: “You better get used to living in a bilingual America” (Perspective, May 17): It has always been my understanding that when you immigrate to another country, you learn the language of that country. I consider myself fortunate, having studied three languages for four years, which was mandatory in high school. This was in addition to speaking the provincial dialect and learning “High Dutch” in school. The majority of foreign visitors to the U.S. will probably have learned English in school. It is always a positive to master another language, in this case Spanish, since many people do not speak English.

Knowledge of Spanish will enable everyone to accommodate people who would otherwise need a translator; it would be more time efficient. Maybe it is time to make it mandatory to study four years of Spanish in high school.

Engelina Smith, Atwater

He’s right, make cockfighting legal

Regarding “Remove the taboo against cockfighting” (Perspective, May 9): Columnist Dave Bultena’s argument to legalize cockfighting was spot-on and changed my opinion. Here’s why: Cockfighting, though clearly a cruel and stupid pursuit, continues to go on and likely will continue despite the fact that it probably would be legal already if the folks participating in it (mainly poor Chicanos) had any legitimate political voice or advocate. If cockfighting was legalized, tax revenue could be made to issue regulations. The always limited resources of law enforcement would be more efficiently delegated toward crimes of more importance involving humans.

Remember, these birds are inclined to kill each other, just as Californians are constitutionally inclined to pursue happiness, which includes the right to gamble and peaceably assemble at a safe and legal cockfight.

Martin Hansen, Merced

Congress spends our money foolishly

Our congressional representatives never ask the public if more money should be borrowed. They never ask how much money should be given to another country. Instead, they send millions and billions to leaders each year who never distribute the money to the needy people of their country. In the meantime, it sustains the lavish lifestyle of the president of a foreign country at our taxpayers’ expense.

Why aren’t leaders held accountable? We, the people, are never asked our opinion and I would like to know how a congressman can vote without first polling all the people in his or her district. It is unconscionable to vote without polling the people. Congress should be held accountable. Congress would be more protective of our money. Congress has racked up debt, possibly causing our money to collapse.

We should elect people with common sense. Truck drivers, carpenters, mechanics, waitresses, housewives, hairdressers and farmers would budget better than Congress.

Carol Campodonica, Merced

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