Outside of the United States, the situation of the Spanish language in the U. S. is often entangled with anti-imperialistic political postures that assume as axiomatic that any language 1and culture arriving in the United States will be overwhelmed by Anglo-American values, and will be denatured, weakened, contaminated, and ultimately assimilated by the mainstream juggernaut. Defenders of language mixing and borrowing have largely come from literary circles and from the political left, and have been frustrated in attempts to bring their views to the attention of mainstream educators, journalists, and community leaders. Despite the fact that nearly every Spanish speaker in the United States and throughout the world, as well as the majority of Anglo-Americans recognize this word, there is no consensus on the linguistic and social correlates of `Spanglish.’ One common thread that runs through most accounts of spanglish is the idea that most Latinos in the United States and perhaps in Puerto Rico and border areas of Mexico speak this `language’ rather than `real’ Spanish. Since upwards of 50 million speakers are at stake, the matter is definitely of more than passing interest. A survey of recent statements will demonstrate the diversity of definitions, viewpoints, and attitudes regarding the linguistic behavior of the world’s fourth-largest Spanish-speaking community.