- I don't think so. I feel happy when I hear somebody trying to speak Spanish. I hope English speakers feel the same.
- —Guest Lupe
Don't make assumptions about people
- My partner is a Native American person from Mexico who speaks his native language (Nahuatl) and does not speak Spanish. As you may have already guessed, he is ridiculed by people who mistakenly speak to him Spanish and later do not believe that he is Native because of his English accent. These people also find it hard to believe that he does not speak Spanish and say that he HAS TO speak Spanish because he looks Mexican. He answers that he is Mexican but Native Mexican. Please stop assuming that anyone who looks stereotypically "Latino"/"Hispanic" speaks Spanish. Our native people will thank you. I also hope you learn that there are many Native American languages in the Americas that continue to be spoken in our present day.
- —Guest Atl
Let's help each other
- I don't know why friendliness would ever be considered offensive. I think we should all both work together and learn from each other. If anyone thinks that that is offensive, then they are just plain ignorant. I am half Mexican and half white and speak Spanish fluently. I would be more than eager to help someone learn, Spanish just as I would hope someone from a different culture would help me learn their language
- —Guest David
- As long the people are polite for me, the most important are good manners, a beautiful smile and the tone of voice, for sure. I believe if the person gets upset, it is because he or she is not proud of the background, ashamed of the people.
- —Guest sandra
I would be careful
- I would be careful and assess the situation well. Personally, I don't mind. I've had people just automatically start speaking to me in Spanish. My English is fluent (I was born in the USA) ,but like I said, I don't mind at all. However, I have heard and know of people who get offended. So I would just be careful with that. But if someone does take it the wrong way I wouldn't pay any mind to it if I were you. Don't let that stop you from doing what you set out to do and just try with the next person. If someone was offended over that, then they obviously have other issues to deal with. Maybe they're embarrassed of who they are. Anywho, good luck with your language learning! ;)
- —Guest LIZBet
I find it arrogant
- As an American of Mexican descent, I am offended when people speak to me in Spanish. My family has lived in America for five generations now, and English is all I've ever known. Therefore, I find it extremely arrogant for people to assume I speak Spanish. You speak to me in Spanish, you will not see my nice side.
- —Guest Louise
I wouldn't get offended
- Yo soy española y estoy intentando aprender inglés, hasta hace poco tiempo en España poca gente sabía hablar en inglés, pero actualmente somos muchos los que lo estamos estudiando, y la verdad es que nos resulta difícil y cometemos muchos errores, es normal y creo que nadie espera que una persona que no es nativa de un país hable perfectamente el idioma, ningún español esperaría que lo hablases perfectamente, a nosotros, los angloparlantes nos dicen que pronunciamos demasiado la rrrrrrr, y otros muchos defectos de pronunciación. Pero creo que lo importante es poder comunicarse y los españoles que conozco no se ofenderían en absoluto si les hablases en español, al contrario, si ellos estuvieran fuera de España se alegrarían de oírte hablar en su idioma, y dentro de España les resultaría más cómodo hablar contigo en español, pero si en España te contestan en inglés, diles que prefieres hablar en español para aprender, pues si no lo saben tal vez intenten hablarte en inglés.
Spaniards ready to help
- Say to someone in Spain "quiero practicar mi español" and they will definitely help you. Not so many British visitors to Spain speak Spanish, so the locals are probably surprised. If they won't let you practice your Spanish, choose another restaurant!
- —Guest LIZZY H
Try ... if it doesn't work, oh well
- I'm just in high school, but for the past year have made friends with a guy that lives in Mexico, who I now call my primo (long story). He has helped me to where I don't have much of an accent, I just lack fluidity. I always have loved the thought of making friends with a Latino, but came to realize not all of them, especially my age, want to talk to me in Spanish. I was in one of the Mexican restaurants, and I always order in Spanish right off the bat. And they usually love to respond to me in Spanish and ask why I speak Spanish because my mom orders in English. Well one time, there was a kid not much older than me, and I ordered in Spanish and he talked back to me in English. I was very offended, to be honest! The thing is he had an accent so I know he spoke Spanish well, as all the meseros there speak Spanish (and barely speak English). The point is, try to converse with them and they should respect that you are trying. If they respond in English, continue in English.
- —Guest CKM54
Don't use people just to learn language
- I have a friend that always talks to me in Spanish. He is a gringo. It doesn't bother me. I just feel the only reason he is my friend is just so he can practice his Spanish. That's what I found rude. Don't become friends with somebody just to use them as a language teacher; the best thing is to buy books and take some Spanish classes by yourself.
- —Guest maria
Don't speak Spanish for selfish reasons
- When I moved to Colorado from Puerto Rico and I started working, I wanted to learn English to be able to communicate with people. If I wanted to have better opportunities I needed to learn English. So I met this friend of mine who wanted to learn Spanish and I felt it was selfish from him trying to learn Spanish with me when I needed it more than him. I felt he wanted to learn Spanish just for his own ego so people could say, "Oh wow, he knows Spanish." But now that I moved back to Puerto Rico and don't want to know anything else of USA and its racist ways. I really don't care about learning English, but I feel that some Americans, especially whites, want to use us in some way. How would you feel if I go to you in the street and ask you, hey can I practice my English with you? What am I, a translator? I think the best way is to take classes and don't become friends with somebody. Just practice.
- —Guest maria
- I only speak to a customer in Spanish if they tell me they do not know English, or if they ask me if I speak Spanish.
- —Guest Mao
It's about trying
- It's not about being perfect. In this day and age with globalization and immigration, the number of languages being spoken around you is a lot. Even if you just say "hola" or "buenos días," you earn the respect of the local or native speaker.
- —Guest Cristina
I m with the "maybe, maybe not" group
- I have discovered that many of the people with whom I've made friends in Omaha who are from Mexico are more than happy to speak Spanish with me. I have also discovered that many of the people I've met who grew up speaking both Spanish and English are less likely to want to talk with me in Spanish. There are always exceptions, of course, and the best thing to do is ask them if they'd be OK with conversing with you in Spanish since you would like the practice.
- —Guest Jen
They do it to us
- They do it to us when we are in Latin American countries. They take one look at a person of Anglo-Saxon descent and see you as a walking free English lesson. They do it in stores, taxis, buses, grocery stores, trains, in the office where you work and where the language is Spanish, when you are sharing a house with someone who wants free English practice but refuses to talk to you in Spanish, the language of the country you are both in. They also chase you down the streets yelling at you in English. So why not do the same back to them? It's not fair to native English speakers that this happens to us in every country in the world. Seriously.
- —Guest Akasha