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Official Language: Pros & Cons

Most countries have established an official language, or in some cases various. This language determines the legal standard for the publication and ratification of documents within the given state, This official language thing seems simple; but can get very complicated very quickly as soon as we reach the international level. However, some slightly more chic countries have foregone the whole ‘official language’ thing in favor of chaos.
The most prominent language-less country currently at large is the United States. These countries try to adapt their programs and publications to their local citizens. In the US documents are frequently printed in English, Spanish, Chinese, Hindi, Vietnamese, and Arabic. This chaos is managed by a litany of translators constantly tapping away at keyboards and whispering in the back of court rooms.
This chaos is parallel to that which occurs in massive international organizations. Although its easy enough when in Rome to speak the official language; when Rome, Paris, and Brussels are all in one conference room it can get hairy. The European Union just as the United Nations is plagued by translation costs. Since no nation wants to bow its head and submit to a foreign language, these organizations are forced to accept dozens of languages as ‘official’. This is the reason all of our politicians have cybernetic implants sticking out of the side of their heads.
The benefits espoused by linguistic nationalists occupy a large range of social impacts. Primarily they claim that this imposition would promote national unity and the assimilation of immigrants. This concept relies on the idea that If everybody around town is able speak the same language they will all be able to get along better. The proponents of single-language countries also point out the tremendously high costs of multilingual translations. If the state has no language, then all language is official; this implies that the government is then forced to communicate with individuals, not vice versa. In a practical sense this allows some individuals to skirt the law by claiming ignorance of communication.
The proponents of language-free countries on the other hand espouse greater empathy and diversity. These multilingualism claim that the state is obligated to communicate with their citizens, no matter their language much less ignorance to the common language. If these individuals are ignorant to the common language of the land; they’re clearly underprivileged and deserve special accommodations. These individuals also argue that the lack of national language promotes multilingualism and the preservation of minority cultures. Without an imposed language, one has much more incentive to learn other languages, rather than resent those who don’t speak ‘properly’.
Most states today have an official language, yours is probably one of them. However the question lies in whether that imposition is really necessary or if we can all live without it. How do you side in this argument? Comment your thoughts!


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