Eric Brodrick from Alice Springs has a piece in Crikey this week titled “What’s the Pitjantjatjara word for computer?”
His argument boils down to this paragraph:
Not being able to speak the major language of a country is a disability equivalent to being profoundly deaf. Limiting a person’s access to and knowledge of, the major language of a country in the name of “cultural purity” borders on the criminally insane. How can a person learn and grow if the only language(s) they can speak is as relevant to the modern world as ancient Babylonian?
I wonder if he’s the same bloke who wrote this rant about “Professional Aboriginals” sticking their noses in the government trough?
More on the background:
The Age: “Calma backs bilingual education in NT”
Wamut at That Munanga Linguist: “Bad and ridiculous news from the NT Minister for Education”
Transient Languages and Cultures: “TESOL association against scrapping bilingual education”