The Instigator
ThroughTheIris56
Pro (for)
The Contender
bubbles_go_pop
Con (against)

Having English as everyone's first language would overall be beneficial for humans

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 3/9/2017 Category: Society
Updated: 10 months ago Status: Debating Period
Viewed: 225 times Debate No: 100763
Debate Rounds (4)
Comments (1)
Votes (0)

 

ThroughTheIris56

Pro

Hello everyone.

I am in favour of the idea that all humans in all countries having English as their first language would benefit the majority of humans. This means that everyone would be able speak English with the same fluency that citizens born the USA or Britain can. This doesn't necessarily mean all languages have to be wiped out, people could hypothetically still speak them as secondary languages, it means that the official language of society would be English and it would be commonly used. It also does not mean that different accents or dialects would cease to exist, there would be slightly different ways of speaking, but everyone could clearly understand one another

The person I will be debating against, will be arguing that the world is better as it is: societies and countries having largely different languages as their main language, with people often speaking more than one language (often speaking English).

The debate will officially be 4 rounds, but the first will be me presenting the debate and my opponent accepting, so in practice it will be only 3 rounds.
bubbles_go_pop

Con

Hello,

First of all, I would like to thank you in advance for putting up with my mediocre debate style, of which I assume I posses due to my limited experience. Secondly I would like to thank you for putting forward such an interesting topic and apologise somebody more suited didn't get here.

Have yourself a lovely evening/morning.
Debate Round No. 1
ThroughTheIris56

Pro

Hi there, thanks for accepting the debate. In fact it's my first debate, so I'm not experienced myself either, in fact it seems like a great match.

I will start by laying out reasons why I believe having multiple languages in the world is detrimental, and why I believe having English as a global language would reduce or make these problems non existent.

Tourism:

Tourism is mostly a fun activity and can be an enlightening experience. However I feel that language barriers can worsen the experience. Being able to speak to people less efficiently adds to needless stress on what should be an enjoyable activity, and can potentially be dangerous if a crisis happens and the tourist is unable to communicate, especially problematic if a child is separated from their parents. Additionally, it would provide business opportunities as it would level the playing field. The businesses that are richer and able to afford facilities for foreign language speakers have a significantly bigger reach and advantage than smaller companies that are not able to provide such a thing. It also discourages exploration, tourists are generally encouraged to stick to "tourist friendly" areas often because they speak English, this can make a trip to another country less authentic. Easier tourism would benefit anyone hoping to travel, and would financially benefit the tourist industry.

Immigration:

Immigrants would be highly benefit if they already spoke the language of the country they are moving to. If all people spoke English this would be the case. It would make getting a job, seeking aide from locals and integrating into society easier. People would have more freedom of choice when it comes to where they want to live in the world. This case is even stronger for refugees such as the people in the ongoing Syrian refugee crisis. They are forced to flee, have no idea where they will end up and cannot possibly learn the language beforehand. They are spread all over the place, and will often be forced to learn something like English, Greek, Italian or German upon arrival. Not to mention they'd be forced to learn it in unfavorable and urgent conditions. Speaking English would also lessen anti immigrant sentiments, poor communication can be frustrating for both parties, despite the immigrant's best efforts. Not to mention, non English speakers often don't often have the luxury of going to another country and having locals cater to their language.

Culture:

Culture could reach a golden age if everyone spoke English. The reason I say this is because instead of 339 million people, there could be over 7 billion potential people contributing to art in one language. This means that the amount of films, music, poetry, video games, literature etc., would drastically increase. Not to mention culture would be diversify, because these things would be more likely reach places, in which the population would previously have no interest in. For example a book written by a Thai person would have a more equal chance of being successful in Britain when compared to a native Brit, so success would be more down to the talent of the author. Like with tourism, bigger companies have more resources to provide translations and therefore reach a bigger market, so not needing multiple translations would level the playing field. A lot of meaning can be lost when translated from the original language, having one language means consumers wouldn't lose out on an artist's intended meaning just because they live in a different region.

Multiple languages in one country:

Unfortunately some people can't avoid language barriers by simply remaining in one country. In countries such as Indonesia, Afghanistan, Switzerland, Canada and China, more than one language is largely spoken. This means that the organisations, businesses and governments have to allocate effort and resources into translating into all languages to reach everyone. Monolingual people find it harder to move around their own country, and in extreme cases it can contribute to ethnic tensions and isolation within some groups.

People have to adapt to English:

I believe I've made it somewhat clear that I think the people who would benefit most from English becoming a global language are non English speakers. This is because things are commonly translated into English, so people need to learn English anyway. In fact people who don't have time or resources to learn English are at a disadvantage compared to those who do.

People wouldn't need to learn other languages:

Finally, people need to learn other languages anyway. This happens all over the world so people from other countries will can speak to their neighbours. Japanese people will need to learn Korean, Polish people will take time to learn German, Mexicans will need to speak English. If everyone spoke English, no-one would ever need to take the time and effort learn another language. The only time this might not be the case is in the far future if dialects evolve so far apart they become separate languages. However people wouldn't need to take time and effort to make sure they could speak to other people, and could use that to develop other skills.

Those are some of the ways I believe having English as everyone's first language would benefit everyone. I look forward to seeing what flaws my opponent can find in my arguments, or what additional points they can raise.
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Debate Round No. 2
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Debate Round No. 3
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Debate Round No. 4
1 comment has been posted on this debate.
Posted by SegBeg 10 months ago
SegBeg
Forcing people to speak English is the first step in them losing their indigenous languages- look what happened to the Maori people in New Zealand and the Native Americans. No- NOT everyone should speak English. It just gives Anglophones and excuse to not bother learning another language when travelling to a non-English speaking country. If you're an Anglophone and you want to go live in Italy- you learn to speak ITALIAN- of you want to go live in China- you learn to speak MANDARIN/CANTONESE, you want to live in Japan- you learn JAPANESE, you want to live in Brazil- you learn to speak PORTUGUESE. If a non English speaker want to live in the US or England- they learn to speak ENGLISH. Simple as that. Why does English have to be the official language by the way? Yes it's treated like the universal language, but that does not make it the superior language. Why can't let's say SPANISH be the official language? Or maybe FRENCH or GERMAN. Sorry, but no county should be required to learn English as their FIRST language- their NATIVE TONGUE should be their first language. When you make people speak English or any other language that those people don't speak, they begin losing important aspects of their own culture.
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