Language Barriers for Foreigners

Powerful Essays
I have lived in the United States for almost three years now. Being natively of Bangladeshi origin, I experience an extremely different lifestyle than Americans do. It is the lifestyle experienced by those you come from other countries to live in the U.S. Being part of this international community, I am more sensitive to and hence aware of issues that primarily affect the lives of these kinds of people than Americans are. Of these many issues, there is one I have identified that comes up in discussions more frequently than others. The issue I am referring to is that of the language barrier that exists between those whose primary language is English and those whose primary language is not English. In recent history, many studies have been conducted on this topic regarding how often this language barrier restricts effective communication, what consequences occur as a result of it and how best to rectify this problem. These studies are far from finished and are still continuing. It might still be quite some time before we can obtain some quantifiable results from these studies that can actually be applied towards determining a viable solution. However, as stated in "USA Today", one person with limited English skills enters the country every thirty one seconds, and one out of five people in the USA speak a language other than English. This is enough to prove that language differences are real enough. However, being in the 21st century, I would like to believe that we have at least to some extent made some beneficial progress in these issues. My experience in the extremely diverse and multicultural environment that is UTA, I have come to believe this true at least about the issue of language barriers between people of dif... ... middle of paper ... ...rtant to understand that we do not live in a perfect society and that the debate here is not whether or not language barriers have come to be of no consequence what so ever, but whether or not it is a significant problem that warrants peoples' attentions or not. To this question I can give first hand testimony that it is not. I regularly hang out with a group of friends who speak different languages, and we all actively speak in our own languages even when some don't understand the language. However, most of the time we don't even notice or address this phenomenon. I believe that if it stays on its current course, the issue will soon become nothing more than a simple nuisance that nobody pays attention to. I also believe that the benefit we all receive from encouraging such an environment far outweighs any possible downside that may be caused from this issue.