Why the United States Has No Official Language

Most Americans believe that English is the country’s official language, but that's not correct. The United States doesn’t have an official language and never has. An official language is a language that has special status in a country. It’s used by the country’s government, courts, and schools. For example, the official language of France is French, while India has two official languages: English and Hindi. The original 13 colonies that became the United States were colonized by the British, who brought with them their customs and language. However, the British weren’t the only people in the colonies. Colonists came from France, Germany, and Spain. In addition, there were already indigenous peoples in North America, so from the very beginning, Americans have spoken dozens of languages. In 1780, John Adams presented a bill to Congress to make English the official language of the United States, but the bill didn’t pass because opponents said it was a threat to individual liberty. Over the years, many people have tried to declare English the official language, but the United States has only gotten more linguistically diverse. Today, Americans speak more than 350 languages because the federal government allows them to speak any language they want, and that right is protected by the Constitution. Will there ever be an official language of the United States? Probably not.