The Barrier to Intelligence

Nothing truly enables you to understand the power of education quite like studying a foreign language. I just completed my final exam for what will be (hopefully) my last Spanish and foreign language class. I learned very little español in my two years of study. What I did realize, earlier this year, is how important language is to your intelligence, or at least your perceived intelligence.

During my Spanish classes, I often found myself with an idea that was important to the class discussion. Usually, however, I would stay silent. I couldn’t figure out how to translate my thought into Spanish and was too intent on learning the language to ask in English.

It occurred to me that for the 1.2 million people who immigrate to the U.S. annually, mastery of English is critical to their success. If they can’t speak English well, they won’t do well during job interviews. This would be the case even if they were a certified genius or a renowned scholar from their country of origin.

It also seems that as Christians, we must be mindful of how we treat people who didn’t grow up learning our language. They are of equal worth in God’s eyes.