...never understood, is why most of hungary doesn't freaking learn english.

As far as I could see, if a whooping 40% knows any English, it's a victory.

I always suspected that they are a bit too "old school" and try to keep their (our) traditions alive - which is pretty admirable in fact.

I always hated the fact that most of them rather look at movies and use programs that are translated into Hungarian, than the original. (Dad for example always switches his T.V to the dubbed programs when he watches an English documentary)

Today, though, I found an article that baffles me.

I'm not sure if this is for real, because it just sounds too stupid for me to believe it, but if it is I'm going to lose my faith in Hungarians even more (I'm talking about the Hungarians that actually live in Hungary, and not the ones that are in Transylvania. Transylvania rules!).

According to this article "the Hungarian government wants to discourage students from taking English as their first foreign language because it is so easy!"

Now if that isn't a stupid reason, I don't know what is. I agree, English is freaking easy, but -in my opinion- this just gives another reason TO learn it. Especially because nowadays the whole freaking world uses it. Wouldn't it be helpful to have a common language that's actually easy to learn and whit which you could actually communicate with foreigners, than trying to learn... I don't know... Mandarin. (I don't have anything against learning other languages, but in my opinion who doesn't know ANY English must be either really lazy, either mentally challenged.)

The article then went on saying that the problem isn't with English - because out of all the students 75% don't know ANY foreign language.

Now, let me tell you, that according to this the government is just trying to give a false and stupid reason to the laziness of the people.

And quite frankly, I don't get how so many people don't know any English. I mean, we are living in times when everything modern comes from West. Movies, computers, news, internet... and even stupid holidays are invading our countries. How is it possible that will all of this nothing sticks to them?

Quite frankly I didn't even need to TRY to learn English - whatever I know I actually picked up from the Media. (The only decent English we had was in 12th grade, and by that time I knew enough to be able to talk almost fluently)

I think the biggest problem with this is that some people tend to be shy when it comes to actually speaking a foreign language - probably because they think the native speakers will make fun of them because of their mistakes.

(Actually, I'm probably one of the people who are reluctant to actually speak - but that's not just because of the language... I'm usually reluctant to even speak in Romanian... and most of the times I don't even know what to say in Hungarian when I'm on a phone with a person I don't particularly feel close to. But even I can put myself over it when I'm not actually thinking about what am I doing. For example, when I went to Taizé and visited a couple of foreign countries I had no problem with speaking to other people in English- even though my accent is thick. But every time I talked to complete strangers - even if they weren't fluent- they managed to stutter out short answers and directions. Which was perfectly enough for me to not get lost.)

And now, about the whole talking in English correctly thing. I saw native people make HUGE mistakes, ones that I needed to correct.

I guess this would be funny, if I didn't know Hungarian people who were absolutely crappy at writing.

I guess it is true that not everyone is made for studying languages, but I'm still not budging from my conviction... that is, that if you were surrounded by another language you would pick something up even if you don't want to learn it.