The government recently announced that it will hire Ebonics translators to help with drug investigations in areas including South Florida. The news has ignited a debate that’s been raging for over a decade: Should Ebonics be recognized as its own language and should law enforcement be able to understand it?
On the one hand, you have some interpreters and translators who say Ebonics is merely colloquial English and doesn’t require a special translator. They say that dropped G’s and double negatives are merely an uneducated way of speaking English.
On the other hand, the Drug Enforcement Administration says that Ebonics translators will help investigators decode the words and syntax that drug dealers use to communicate with each other. They say that the translators will be valuable in cracking down on drug crimes around South Florida and the Caribbean. However, the narcotics squads in Palm Beach and Broward counties say they’re already able to understand how drug criminals talk.
Source: Will Ebonics fluency help fight crime? South Florida Sun Sentinel, September 13, 2010
Contact the Miami criminal defense lawyers at Leifert & Leifert if you have been charged with a crime such as drug trafficking.