I could hear salsa, guanguanco, and rumba blasting from everywhere. Beautiful Cuban women filled the street, and Spanish filled the air.
"Permiso Senor, cuanto cuesta la pitaagua?" I ask in Spanish, "Sir, how much for an Icy?"
"Cual esos ahi setenta centavo." He replied.
I walked around the block as I admired the Spanish style buildings, and the beautiful Palm trees.
Hum, what's that smell? Smell like a fresh strip of salchicha or maybe albondigas .
"Chicharrones! Chicharrones!" Shouted a cuban man selling pork skins on the corner.
What a beautiful country! What a beautiful day!
-Excerpt from "Adios Havana" By Lazero Cortijo
In recent years, the total population of Spanish speakers in the US has doubled.
According to Census 2001 of the estimated 284 million residents in the USA, 36 million are of Hispanic origin (Excluding PR). 5 million more than the entire population of Canada.
In 1960 people of Hispanic origin only equaled 6% of the US population. Since increased to 13%.
332 million people in the world speak Spanish. Second to Chinese Mandarin: 885 million, English speakers third, with ten million less than Spanish.
The continual growth of the Hispanic population increases everyday, but the number of Americans not of Hispanic descent who speak Spanish fluently, is a mere 3%, according to studies done by Florida State University.
Relevant because of area of high Hispanic concentration.
Spanish should be required to be taken as a second language in grades K-9. A.
American students should be required to speak Spanish fluently upon completion of their 8th grade year. B.
Other societies such as Pakistan, Japan, and China can demonstrate proficiency in 3 or 4 languages by middle school years.
Picture yourself as a fluent Spanish speaking American....
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