Thursday, June 05, 2008

Guess Who's Back

Lord Eric is back and this time he aims to bitch slap anyone who gets in the way of the only issue that's ever gained him any celebrity, whether on Fox News or in the Nashville City Paper: English Only.

You've created a monster, Nashville (or should we just blame Bellevue?). CM Eric Crafton cannot get enough attention with his long string of education-related memorializing resolutions in council. And a homeschooler's church-lady link love is just not enough for him to get some strong play on the intertubes. His few seconds of fame on Fox are now stale. So, he is jumping back in to save us and soak up any notoriety he can get. The mainstream media is more than willing to give him the attention he craves. He is a spectacle.

In the end, Crafton's English Only ballot initiative is a lightning-rod waste of taxpayer resources, since the Metro Council already passed a resolution affirming English as Metro's official language. Like Ben Cunningham's 2006 property tax referendum, it is designed to prey on people's fears, and it will ultimately serve no good purpose. It is intended to micromanage Metro employees who might choose to use any bilingual skills they may have to perform their jobs more efficiently and get folks through hoops faster. Who really cares if a Metro employee helps someone in the process of learning English get through the system faster by using their native tongue?

When immigrants are already learning proper English at faster rates than native born Americans are, Crafton's ballot initiative is grand-standing designed to further his own political ambitions and ultimately destroy progress in our community.

Look at the monster you've created, Nashville. He thinks that he needs to save us all.


  1. Your comment in the third paragraph is incorrect. The language of the amendment does not prevent a Metro employee from assisting someone in a language other than English, if they happen to have the ability to do so. It does prevent someone from demanding services in a language other than English.

    Do you believe Metro is obligated to provide translation services, printed literature, etc in any or every language that could be in use in the city?

  2. Your point was already debunked pretty well by Crafton-opponents in council debate last year. English Only/First sets an intimidating tone for Metro employees who would not be sure whether they might be punished for assisting bilingually.

    The whole idea that someone can walk into a govt. bureaucracy and demand anything strictly on their own terms is ridiculous. People who speak little English, broken English, or English as a second language are more likely to be discriminated against than English-speakers, regardless of paranoia that Spanish will one day rule our lives. Crafton has never adequately proved that Spanish-speaking Nashvillians are not learning English fast enough to warrant this intiative. And he has a bad habit of pitching it as an immigration issue even when he says it isn't.

    If you want to know what I believe, I believe that govt. should do whatever it can to help its patrons out, and if someone needs some help with language challenges, then we shouldn't be building more walls of resistance. And we sure as hell shouldn't be spending our tax dollars on mob-rule ballot initiatives and micromanaging with language police.

  3. Hear, hear, S-town!

    I think its nearing time for tolerant, progressive Nashvillians to start our own ballot initiative... one to recall the demagogue Crafton.