I agree with Lois Drake, who wrote in a letter (Jan. 8), “I cannot understand why we continue to pretend that a working knowledge of Spanish isn’t necessary for life in Los Angeles.”

Spanish is the second most popular language, along with English, in the Western world. Only the two main dialects of India and China number more speakers than our two languages.

There are at least 20 countries where Spanish is spoken in the entire world, most of them south of our border. Americans taking foreign language courses in our schools place it at the top of their list by far.


Also, there are at least 20 million U.S. residents who are Latinos and this group keeps growing, with about a third of them living in California.

English will always be our official and commercial language, but I certainly hope all intelligent Southern Californians learn how to speak Spanish.

The beautiful language of Cervantes is an enjoyable one to converse with, I can assure you.


Los Angeles