If you click on “Whitehouse.gov,” you will see an image of President Donald Trump and Vice President Mike Pence, on the front page, as well as a statement about the “anti-police atmosphere” in the United States, but what you won’t find is anything in Spanish. The entire White House website used to be available in Spanish, and English, but at least for now, it’s English only.
The Los Angeles Times is reporting that the Spanish version of the White House website can no longer be found despite the fact that the United States does not have English only as its official language. But during the campaign, Donald Trump was critical of any opponents who spoke in Spanish, including the former Florida Governor, Jeb Bush, who speaks fluent Spanish.
“This is a country where we speak English!”
The statement has been made that at least “for now” the White House website will not include bilingual access of any kind.
White House removes LGBT, climate change, Spanish webpages https://t.co/xjja3ytFCB— cannizzaro wilson (@MRCANNIZZARO23) January 24, 2017
While the Donald Trump White House website was complete the day of the swearing-in, Trump’s spokesman Sean Spicer says that a Spanish version of the site might be available at some point in the future, but right now, the technology team has a high volume of other work to tend to.
“We are continuing to build out the website. We’ve got the IT folks working overtime on that now.”
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The Miami Herald says that the removal of the Spanish language version of the White House website has started the English language only debate in the first few days of the Trump administration. Dr. Phillip Carter, a sociolinguist professor at Florida International University in Miami, believes this is Donald Trump getting off on the wrong foot with Latinos.
“The removal of Spanish says something about English monolingualism, but it also says something about the speakers of Spanish. Are you in or are you out? Suddenly they’re out.”
Though English is thought of as the primary language of the United States, there is no official language, and the country has over 52 million Spanish speakers.
White House shocks with 'English-only' website, nixing Spanish version, but says don't judge yet https://t.co/kAwO08ckQL— Rita Young (@rcsyoungusanet) January 24, 2017
The Washington Post says that just after Donald Trump took office, the Spanish version of the White House page was unavailable.
“The page you’re looking for cannot be found.”
The Obama White House even had a Twitter account for the Spanish version of the site, called @LaCasaBlanca, which was updated regularly. Press Secretary Sean Spicer asked the press to believe him, that the Spanish version of the site is one of the things that the Trump administration plans to work on.
“Trust me, it’s going to take a little bit more time, but we’re working piece by piece to get that done.”
But the Trump IT team has gotten a section of the White House website dedicated to Melania Trump’s business ventures completed, calling the First Lady a successful entrepreneur with clippings that tell of her success on QVC.
“Melania is also a successful entrepreneur. In April 2010, Melania Trump launched her own jewelry collection, ‘Melania™ Timepieces & Jewelry,’ on QVC.”
But when the Washington Post asked QVC about the Melania Trump brand, they released a statement saying that at this time, they do not have her line for sale.
“At QVC, we pride ourselves on curating an ever-changing mix of products from thousands of brands for our customers to discover,” a spokeswoman said in an email. “As part of this, QVC has offered items from Melania Trump’s brand. At this time, QVC does not have an active relationship with the brand.”
Sean Spicer could not give a date for the return of the Spanish language White House site, but he likely will be asked about it on a regular basis.
Do you think it’s wrong to have launched the Trump White House website without a version in English and Spanish? Do you think the Spanish version will ever be functional?
[Featured Image by Alex Wong/Getty Images]