Lost in translation: ‘Speak German at all times’ call to immigrants is dropped

One of Germany’s governing parties backpedalled Monday for a call for immigrants to speak German even at home, giving way in the face of a storm of criticism. The conservative Christian Social Union was on the defensive over a draft motion drawn up by senior officials for a party conference this week, stating that people wanting permanent residency “should be urged to speak German in public and in the family.” The call came at a time of anxiety in Germany and elsewhere in Europe over immigration and increasing numbers of refugees.

Misanthropic, unconstitutional, absurd.

How Germany’s Turkish community viewed the language proposal

The general secretary of Chancellor Angela Merkel’s Christian Democrats, Peter Tauber, said on Twitter it’s “none of politicians’ business whether I speak Latin, Klingon or Hessian at home,” referring to his home region’s dialect. Vice Chancellor Sigmar Gabriel said no one in his center-left party “would come up with the idea of banning immigrants from speaking their mother tongue, and I am sure that we will never reach this level of political dementia.” CSU general secretary Andreas Scheuer has now revealed the offending sentence was being changed to say would-be residents “should be motivated to speak German in day-to-day life.”

it is self-evident that speaking the German language well is a special point for integration, but it also is no bad thing for children to grow up bilingual.

German Government spokesman