Making English Official: Efficiency at What Cost? Persuasive Essay by Nicky

A persuasive essay that analyzes the question of whether to make English the official language of the United States.
# 146180 | 1,581 words | 4 sources | MLA | 2010 | US
Published on Dec 20, 2010 in Linguistics (General) , Sociology (Multiculturalism) , Hot Topics (Immigration)

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This paper focuses on answering the question of whether or not English should be made the official language of the United States of America. The paper explains that this debate is even older than the country itself, stretching all the way back to the time of the First Continental Congress. The paper asserts that a fair consideration of the question must examine the effects that granting English such an official status has had, in addition to examining the motives behind the passage of such legislation. The paper cites research results suggesting that making English the official language might actually have detrimental results; English can be taught without making it official, but other languages will fade in importance if we rob this state of the heritage that these other languages represent. The paper concludes that there is no need for the protectionism felt by many; acceptance and evolution has been the greatest strength of the English language since its creation, and the linguistic melting pot continues today.

From the Paper:

"There seem to be two main points stressed by those who would have English made the official language of the state. The first of these is a feeling of protectionism towards the English language accompanied or even caused by a feeling of nationalism for the United States of America. These arguments, though logically sound in the effects they attest official status of the English language would produce, have no place in government--there is no right or responsibility granted to the state to protect a language, and history and linguistics both teach us that such protectionism is impossible; without isolation, languages are in a constant state of change (Opposing Views). In addition, any law defining or advancing any sort of "American ideal" was specifically left out of this nation's Constitution, in order that "American" abuses cannot be carried out on minorities. This leaves the second common reason cited for making English the official language of government--simple efficiency. This claim has more validity in the political sphere; there is a lot of evidence that suggests that a single-language government could have many benefits for the citizens of this state. At the same time there is a sense that this world limits many people's civil liberties and access to government. An examination of both sides of this issue makes it clear that the people of this state and the United States as a whole stand to lose a lot more by making English an official language than they do from keeping government operating in the languages of its people, which are many."

Sample of Sources Used:

  • Crawford, James. "The Official English Question." 1997. Accessed 15 February 2009.
  • Mount, Steve. "Constitutional Topic: Official Language." 2006. Accessed 15 February 2009.
  • Opposing Views. "Should English be the 'Official' Language of the U.S.?" 2008. Accessed 15 February 2009.
  • ProEnglish. "Why Official English?" Accessed 15 February 2009.

Cite this Persuasive Essay:

APA Format

Making English Official: Efficiency at What Cost? (2010, December 20) Retrieved June 07, 2023, from

MLA Format

"Making English Official: Efficiency at What Cost?" 20 December 2010. Web. 07 June. 2023. <>