General Question

Dutchess_III's avatar

In your opinion, what would be the one most useful 2nd language to learn for an American?

Asked by Dutchess_III (46804points) 2 months ago
21 responses
“Great Question” (4points)

Which one would we benefit the most from?

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RedDeerGuy1's avatar

I would say Spanish. Seeing that you share a border with Mexico.

LostInParadise's avatar

I would also say Spanish. Without doing a Web search, I am pretty sure that the number of Spanish speakers far outnumbers the number of speakers of any other foreign language in the U.S.

gondwanalon's avatar

Definitely Spanish.

cookieman's avatar

Spanish. Aside from the border with Mexico, Puerto Rico is a territory and it’s the most broadly spoken language in the world, outside of English.

janbb's avatar


Dutchess_III's avatar

I think they should start teaching Spanish in Kindergarten or preK.

Zaku's avatar

“An American”?

Americans are individuals. Hopefully they choose the language they’re interested in, and we get some variety.

cookieman's avatar

@Dutechess_III: My daughter’s school did that. She took Spanish from K to 8th grade.

Dutchess_III's avatar

Does she speak pretty fluently?

KNOWITALL's avatar

Another for Spanish. Sesame Street taught us Spanish as kids, I loved it.

MrGrimm888's avatar

Spanish, by a long way.

cookieman's avatar

@Dutchess_III: She can understand it fully and writes it pretty well. I suspect she can speak it, but is just shy about it.

JLeslie's avatar

Spanish. Spanish is number two spoken behind English in the US. Of course there are pockets around the country where a different language is number two. Tarpon Springs, FL I assume it is Greek. Dearborn, MI it is likely Arabic. North Vermont it might be French.

Exceptions to Spanish being the best language to know would be if you are working in a specific business that deals with a specific country. Like for some Chinese might be most useful.

If you want to work for the CIA Arabic and Farsi were in need, I assume that is still the case.

gorillapaws's avatar

There’s a case to be made for Latin. Obviously Spanish makes sense for many reasons. If you were close to Quebec, or in/near the French Quarter of New Orleans, then French could make a lot of sense. Finally, America is a melting pot, but there are “chunks” in the stew that retain their cultures. If you do business or live in or near one of these communities, then those languages can also make a lot of sense. I’m currently selling Italian wines and my state has a large Italian American community that often does business speaking Italian. Not knowing the language puts me at a disadvantage with my customers.

smudges's avatar

Spanish would be the most useful for the majority of people, but like @JLeslie said, there are many areas where a different language would be most beneficial. There are lots of places where spanish would be useless. In Vermont, French was a required class; I remember taking it from 6th grade up. So spanish isn’t the be-all and end-all. And like @gorillapaws says, Italian is huge in his area. I think sometimes we forget just how many nationalities are here and how many are still very ‘old world’, meaning they live like they’re still in their home country.

smudges's avatar

p.s. When I lived in TX, Spanish was a required class.

Dutchess_III's avatar

In my specific area Redneck should be a required language course!

Poseidon's avatar

Proper English in speaking and writing.

Dutchess_III's avatar

Got dat rite @Poseidon!

Smashley's avatar

Python, maybe C++

kritiper's avatar


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