by Mayu Uehara
Language is one of a given tool for people to communicate. It can show our emotion, identify ourselves and also built relationship. First three months of my life in Canada, I had been stressful because only English was spoken there and couldn’t speak Japanese. Now I can speak English but this is because my friends and many people there tried hard to understand me and also taught me English. In Japan, there are lots kinds of immigrants who are struggling with their life. They are isolated and also tend to gather together with common race. There should be necessity of community project to teach people second languages for not only immigrants but also local people. There are three reasons for supporting my opinion. First, the numbers of immigrants has increased. Second, community should make better society for citizens. Third, bilingualism can make numbers of chances for every people.
In reality, globalization can’t be avoided. Now the numbers of immigrants has increased and as social changes in Japan, numbers of elderly people will be twice as much as youth, therefore we need more hands from overseas. In addition, in the aspects of business, it’s hard enough to pursue profit only inside of Japan so that there are lots of Japanese corporate progressing overseas and compete with global corporate. This means language especially English is important to success and also sustain Japanese society.
Second, though globalization is inevitable social change, local people is not used to be with immigrants yet. There are some racial difficulties such as Korean resident in Japan, Brazilian workers in Japan and so on. There are Korean or Brazilian communities in some parts but they are isolated from community mostly. For instance, Brazilian who come to Japan for working can’t read Japanese of course so they don’t know about social rules such as how to wrap garbage and when they should put them on the road. Only if there are any languages to communicate, they don’t have to have troubles. It’s difficult to make country to regulate bilingualism, however; community should be flexible to those community changes. If the community has lots of Brazilian residents, it should have some chances to provide citizens of the community to learn Japanese, English or Portuguese so that they can communicate each other to make their society better. These community movements also tie not only between local people and immigrants but also between local people themselves. If the bonds become tight in community, we’ll deal with current problems such as DV, crime, and urgent disasters.
Third, bilingualism can provide us many effects. If we speak only Japanese, we can communicate with Japanese speakers but it’s seldom to speak with foreigner because Japanese speaker of foreigners are not so many. If we have second language such as English, Spanish, and Chinese and so on, we can travel overseas, use it in business occasions, make foreign friends, and learn other cultures or sense of values. These effects can make our choices of life styles way broad. If numbers of communities, which support learning second language increase, lots of Japanese can have global senses and also choices of their life styles.
In conclusion, it’s necessary for Japan to live with immigrants and we need to protect them not only for them but also for ourselves. Second language can be great supporter to live our own life better and also it must need to keep up with other countries. Community can provide great impacts by progressing bilingualism for tie of citizenship, activation of society and broad choices of citizen’s life styles.