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Should signs and other public services cater to different languages?
Posted 7/6/15
Living the city of New York, everything is multilingual. The bus has signs in three or more languages, as are announcements. Stores in my area too are in many different languages. The parks and other public places signs are in multiple languages also.

I've gotten used to seeing this, but I'm sure someone not used to it would find it pretty hard to understand.

Do you think countries like America, which is a predominantly white nation, should cater to different languages, or should everything be only in English?

Personally, I think if the area is not highly English speaking or is an immigrant area, it's a necessity and a public one at that. What do you think?
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24 / M / Las Vegas
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Posted 7/6/15
I'm fine with signs having different languages. It's not like it hurts me in any way.
mel823 
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F / New York
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Posted 7/6/15 , edited 7/6/15
I live in New York too, so I'm used to it as well.

Also, I use the multilingual signs as an opportunity to practice another language.
Posted 7/6/15 , edited 7/6/15
I think there is a topic like this already...
But, yes. California is the same. I don't see it as a problem or even slightly troublesome in my everyday life.
Why make a multicultural country just use only one language? That makes no sense.
blenc 
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22 / M / Somewhere in Florida
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Posted 7/6/15
It doesn't bother me. I see it all the time in Miami. If having a language a large percentage of a population in an area are more comfortable with than English on signs keeps them from making wrong turns or whatever else that can happen I fully support it.

I do think a bigger emphasis should be put on learning new languages in education though, both for English speaking american citizens as well as for children of immigrants who don't know English.

Not knowing the primary language of the country you live in is a severe handicap for anyone and knowing multiple languages is an advantage. Period
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24 / M / San Francisco Bay...
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Posted 7/6/15
I'm not sure if I'd use the word "cater," but I'm perfectly content with public documents (e.g. voting packets) with having multilingual signs in proportion to the municipal demographics. And I do mean it should be managed at a municipal (i.e. county) level. Quite frankly, it makes things goes smoother and it doesn't affect me anyway. When it comes to private sector, I don't give a damn and they can do what they want with respect to language.

That said, it shouldn't divert too many resources either. For example, courts shouldn't be expected to perform in every common language (w.r.t. to municipal demographics) nor should schools be expected to provide all materials (e.g. textbooks) in every language. But as a general rule of thumb, I don't have an issue with it.
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17 / M / The Bay
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Posted 7/6/15
Yeah I live in California and we have multilingual signs. I don't see the issue with it, it helps those that are still learning English.
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M / Earth
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Posted 7/6/15
No one is affected negatively by it, so why not?
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16 / F / Connecticut
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Posted 7/6/15
Sure, why not? As long as they don't try to fit 15 different languages on one sign, everything should be fine, right? Might as well have everything with English and Spanish.
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28 / M
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Posted 7/6/15
No, it promotes immigration
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21 / F / Southern US
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Posted 7/6/15
If an area has a sizable population that primarily speaks another language, yes, services should be offered in their preferred language. Some areas wouldn't benefit at all from having such things in other languages - where I live is one example. Also, if a language is important culturally but not the language of the majority (like Irish in Ireland), I think it should also be used heavily in signs and such, just as Ireland does. I imagine other places have situations like that, but I'm not sure the US does - but it could.
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Posted 7/6/15
i dont care
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23 / M / AZ
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Posted 7/6/15
We have them all over the Phoenix area and only a few bigots complain about them.
My local priest has lost parishioners because he offers Spanish services on Sunday.
Posted 7/6/15
The main ones spoken like in america spanish and english, in certain parts others, like pennsylvania german, etc. I dont know if its feasible to put every language.
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27 / M
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Posted 7/6/15 , edited 7/7/15
Not if it makes the signs unreasonably large or distracting.

I personally think it is unreasonable to spend money doing that when people can easily learn what a few words mean. They already have to go to take courses for their licenses and should be required to learn what the signs mean. Most signs are understandable due to their unique symbols alone. The ones that possibly need translation are emergency signs with no symbols or pictures.

I'm fine with many immigrants but I'm not fine with this level of laziness.

For restaurants and other businesses or services in tourist-heavy areas? No problem on my end.
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