When Cirila Baltazar Cruz gave birth to a baby girl in a hospital in Pascagoula, Miss., she didn’t realize her inability to speak English would get her baby taken away from her.
Time magazine reports that Baltazar Cruz, an Oaxacan Indian, speaks only Chatino, an obscure language, barely any Spanish and no English. Apparently that makes her an unfit mother.
(T)he hospital called the state Department of Human Services (DHS), which ruled that Baltazar Cruz was an unfit mother in part because her lack of English "placed her unborn child in danger and will place the baby in danger in the future"...
(A) Jackson County judge gave the infant to a couple…
One of DHS's apparent fears is that an infant isn't safe in a home where the mother can articulate a 911 call solely in a language spoken only by some 50,000 Oaxacan Indians.
Oh please. Baltazar Cruz’s lawyer points out that for more than a century, children have been raised safely by parents who arrived at Ellis Island unable to speak a word of English. Someone should tell these judges and bureaucrats – in plain English -- that the ability to speak a language doesn’t make you a good mother.
- Pre-October 2009