VivirLatino reader, Gilbert Velasquez, went into his local Kohl’s when he came across a section with shirts that had the names of different countries across them. As he looked through them he saw a shirt for Spain that had the text “ESPANA” written across the front. They had incorrectly spelled “ESPANA” with an N.
Is this laziness on the part of the manufacturer? Did they think that people outside of Spain or that Spanish speakers wouldn’t notice? Could they not find the ñ?
What’s particularly funny to me is that it’s being marketed as a way to show pride- with a typo. On the Kohl’s website, where you can also buy the product (see here), in the product description it says:
“Espana” graphic offers national pride.
If there were such a country as “Espana”, maybe.
I reached out to Kohl’s customer service and Public Relations departments and will let you know what they say.
The difference between an n and an ñ is the difference between a year and an asshole (Spanish speakers/writers should figure that one out).
When my daughter was in elementary school in the public school system of NYC, I spent alot of time trying to create equal access to information for Spanish speaking immigrant families. Despite NYC being an “immigrant” city, there is no standardized system of making sure that all parents, regardless of their home language get information that they can understand in order to support their child’s education and participate in the school community. Parent/teacher conferences were interpreted by children and school notices and meetings went home in English only. It was a struggle. Imagine what it is like in communities already less immigrant friendly. A recent incident in North Carolina doesn’t require our imaginations.
Ana Ligia Mateo, a former secretary at a Devonshire Elementary in North Carolina, was hired as a bilingual secretary — which makes sense, since nearly half of the school’s student population is Hispanic, and many come from homes where English is not their first language. But in 2008, a new principal instituted a policy barring faculty or staff from speaking Spanish to parents. The policy seems to be motivated solely by anti-immigrant sentiment and racism. Yet Mateo was a constant rule-breaker. When distraught or concerned parents with a language barrier came to the school, she couldn’t always bring herself to refuse to answer questions or translate so that they could understand. So she was fired.
I’m a bit older than many people, and as such, I grew up in a time when the thought of politicians reaching out to voters on the issue of women getting equal pay for equal work or critiquing the Spanish outreach of another’s campaign was outrageous–or even grounds to lose an election.
And yet here we are in the year 2008, and such things *are* happening on a national stage at that. Here is the latest from the Obama camp:
For those of you who are like me and only got the “Soy Barack Obama” part, basically, what the ad is arguing is that the McCain campain has “two faces.” One they represent to Latin@s and one they represent to non-Latin@s. As such, he can’t be trusted, because what really is his message?
Ed O’Keefe at Washington Post gives the lowdown specifics on the video. I would ask you what you think, but comments aren’t working today, so you can’t tell me! Keep your thoughts in mind, so you can tell us all tomorrow!
We all know that Shakira has made money off of singing in English but more and more companies around the globe including the U.S. are realizing that Spanish is where its at. Spanish is being pushed as a language important in the world of finance for example. Maybe that’s why according to an Univision.com article, around 60% of students opt to study Castellano.
El economista jefe del Banco Bilbao Vizcaya Argentaria (BBVA) en Colombia, José Luis Escrivá, reconoce que “el idioma de los economistas es el inglés” pero precisa que en Estados Unidos, el cuarto país con más hispanohablantes (14.2 por ciento de la población), al menos unos 42 millones de personas se expresan en castellano.el papel del español en las finanzas es cada vez más activo debido a que España ocupa el octavo lugar entre las economías del mundo, factor que incide positivamente en la difusión del idioma”, analiza el director de la Academia Dominicana de la Lengua, Bruno Rosari.
There has always been debate among the Spanish speaking community as to who speaks better (meaning proper) Spanish, with the Spain via its Real Academia Español claiming to be the uncontested voice of reason. But that is about to change.
Ignacio Bosque, professor of the Autonomous University of Madrid and author of Nueva gramática de la lengua española told El Pais that the ‘New Spanish Grammar’ is grammar which has been put together by 22 different academies representing Spanish-speaking countries.
As the population in the South of the US becomes more and more Latino so do the language needs of the area. For all the talk about the English only movement, the fact remains that basic services such as police and other emergency services need to be provided to all and need to oversome language barriers. Georgia is taking the lead in helping to train its police force and emergency telephone operators in speaking and understanding basic Spanish. According to the Univision article, most of the Spanish learned include basic words for car parts and orders like “drop that weapon”, which make me wonder if the police really want to help Spanish speakers or just pull more people over.
Via / Univision.com
Image Via / GACP