2.07.2007

Nashville Adopts English-Only Ordinance

Today's Nashville Hispanic Notebook has this post regarding yesterday's decision by the Nashville Metro Council to pass an English-Only ordinance pushed by Councilman Eric Crafton:

The Tennessean and the City Paper report that the Metro Council passed the controversial language ban ordinance on third and final reading last night, requiring Metro communications to be in English except where federal law or health, safety, or the public welfare require. Its sponsor originally dubbed it "English Only," then "English First" after the exceptions were drafted. He also claimed that one of his reasons for the bill (among many) was to help speakers of other languages to learn English by forcing them to use it when interacting with government. It is unclear whether any immigrant-familiar organizations supported the ordinance, but supporters of the ordinance cited what they deemed to be overwhelming enthusiasm from the general public. A coalition of coalitions called NashvilleForAll, which includes the Hispanic Nashville Notebook, opposed the ordinance.
Among Councilman Crafton's justifications for the anti-immigrant ordinance was this gem:

“The U.N. recently adopted English as its working language — the only people that objected were the French. That made it an added bonus in my opinion.”