Videos

Video: No English-only for New York teen who speaks 20 languages

Video: No English-only for New York teen who speaks 20 languages

LatinaLista — In the last few years in the debate over undocumented Latino immigrants in the country, much has been written about language. Namely, that immigrants need to forget their native tongues and just speak English. The rise of English-only laws in those states that saw a big influx of Latino immigrants has been a stark reminder that racism and prejudice are all too real and still exist.

It doesn't matter that study after study trumpets the benefits of knowing more than one language. There are some who would have the nation believe that English suffices.

If ever there was a doubt that being multilingual is the way to go we only need to look at one particular teenager to see that is not true. Tim Donor is a 17-year-old who speaks not just two languages but 20! Profiled on the YouTube channel Thinkr in its prodigies series, Donor is known as a 'hyper-polyglot,' someone who takes their love of learning and speaking different languages to a whole new level.

Donor is the youngest person in the world doing this. A native of New York City, Donor has concentrated on studying some of the most difficult languages — Farsi, Indonesian, Hebrew, Russian, etc. Living in the Big Apple, which he describes as being one of the most 'linguistically diverse' cities in the world, has meant that Donor doesn't spend all of his time learning languages from a textbook or on the Internet — but getting out and talking to native speakers in their own languages.

For being so young, Donor has a deep insight into what language reveals about a people, a culture and history and how it even impacts how people deal with one another. Though he is considered a prodigy because of the number of languages he speaks, Donor does share one tip on how anyone can learn a new language and have fun doing it.

"I think if you raise people with other languages you open them up to foreign cultures, foreign ideas and in a world that is increasingly globalized you give them a solid opportunity for more connections as they grow older." ~ Tim Donor

Click to add a comment

You must be logged in to post a comment Login

Leave a Reply

Videos

More in Videos

Screen Shot 2015-07-06 at 5.48.07 PM

Video: A hunt for justice for the murders of journalists in Veracruz

Latina ListaJuly 6, 2015
11402535_420815944764554_3679373117860997144_o

Video: Documentary examines how Vietnam War impacted Latinos’ perception of patriotic duty

Latina ListaJuly 1, 2015
FP-Thumbnail-Ep9

Video: Latino queer cartoonist sees the animated world of superheroes as “inherently gay”

Latina ListaJune 30, 2015
Screen Shot 2015-06-22 at 1.02.20 PM

Video: A place in Ecuador where conservation means collaboration

Latina ListaJune 22, 2015
A protester holds up a sign that reads, "I am Nisman" during a silent march to honour late Argentine state investigator Alberto Nisman in Bogota February 18, 2015.   REUTERS/John Vizcaino

Video: VICE news investigates the mysterious death of an Argentine special prosecutor

Latina ListaJune 15, 2015
481946_436661759711621_1747570271_n

Video: New documentary explores how epic film GIANT changed the lives of film’s Latinos

Latina ListaApril 15, 2015
1781152_613085815452133_5139153302845564159_o

Video: Two young Mayan girls accomplish a feat no one believed could be done

Latina ListaMarch 20, 2015
20141013170712-Rex_Poster

Viernes Video: Aspiring Colombian filmmaker mixes zombies and westerns to create an unique horror short

Latina ListaJanuary 30, 2015
988280_501675953244869_1862453297_n

Video: 8-minute Spanish-language film delivers range of emotions highlighting green card lottery system

Latina ListaNovember 12, 2014