eta_ta (eta_ta) wrote,

My reply to Chamberlain

Following is my extended comment from this thread: I didn't want to take up Language Hat's bandwidth. Here it goes.

Mr. Culver (are you speaking for nomis now?), I doubt the validity of the premise "broken families lead to crime" as much as "language loss is the reason for suicides and psychotic breaks". No amount of social work can prevent families to break apart; it's like hypnotizing the earthquake from happening. Equally infantile is trying to blame language loss on suicides and psychotic breaks. As I said, life is not a kindergarten. Learn other language if yours is not lucrative! Billions of people in former Soviet republics, in India, Canada, Australia, immigrants to US (from everywhere) did it - and lived to tell.
As to convincing people to speak their own native language...If you agree the language is a living organism, than it must die eventually; when patient doesn't want to live he has a right not to be force-fed thru tubes.
Here's where we differ, I suppose: I respect decisions of other adult humans and their right to decide for themselves - and take responsibility for their decisions. You think you know better what's good for them and propose the rest of the society should pay for your folly. You know, there was a country where your ideal came to fruition: socialist state with 100% government funding of arts and sciences, including preservation (and sometimes invention) of indigenous culture and languages. Some of the unemployable scientists and broke sculptors of monumental propaganda still mourn the loss of it - although that seems to change recently.

Much good came out of it.

Why is it so difficult for Western intellectuals to look at the enormous failed lab experiment of Soviet Union and draw some obvious conclusions? Bugs me.

The other extreme - intentionally limiting people's use of language - is equally bad. That is another consequence of giving the government too much power. Who can guarantee the "good" administrator who showered remaining speakers of dying language with public funds in preservation programs will not be replaced tomorrow by a manager with Stalinist motto "no person - no problem", who'll create elimination regime like the one that Maureen above described - even if people were preserving the language by themselves?

Aside: Dear Sirs *dearieme and *Folquerto, allow me to express my deepest and sincerest apology for [unintentional!] misuse of "f.ex.". Am I allowed to say "for instance"? Please advice.
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