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DonLever

Chinese Signs Out Of Hand in Richmond Says Petition

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But Wet, you left out the "while..." part. That part's important too.

;)

It's all about finding a balance and compromise and that is becoming a lost art.

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Well, some people will think it's silly that because one province is heavily french orientated that every province has to go through it in school, on top of having like every product ever of food and drink and labelling and instructions to have it included. Why is it exactly even considered a main language of Canada if really only ONE province really uses it? I mean hell, with the growing rate of Chinese in BC, does that mean chinese will soon be an official language of Canada, because one province has so much of it? I mean, I'm sure there is probably some good older reason for it being required or recognized as a canadian language, but.. why is it being enforced the way it is in every other province?

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Normally i am against any kind of government intervention but it has gotten to a point where new Canadians are not learning our languages, cultures and ways of life and are staying ignorant of Canadian ways. This is an English and French speaking country, you MUST learn one of those two languages if you are to become a Canadian and be integrated into society (in my opinion.) To not do so only promotes segregation and division. We are a nation built on multiculturalism and immigration but we need to take a stand on bending so much to make newcomers feel so comfortable. We need to strongly promote new Canadians integrating with society at all points including language, laws, accepting of other lifestyles (homosexuality for example) etc. Religion is basically one of the few things that is hands off.

The last thing I want to see are signs in foreign languages everywhere. it only promotes them to remain ignorant of our culture, laws, languages etc.

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It got out of hand 20 years ago with Aberdeen Centre.

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To save time, I'll post here what I already posted on my Facebook wall about this issue:

That's the consequence of this free market - a business can pick and choose who to serve so long as it does not infringe upon any Charter violations. If businesses decide they want to cater to Cantonese/Mandarin speaking-only people, they make the financial risk of doing so. So long as the business doesn't have a sign on their front door saying "no gwailo," there's no legal violation.

Is it a stupid move? Probably - 40% of Richmond residents don't speak Cantonese or Mandarin, and given the amount of Vancouverites that come to Richmond for food and shopping, that's a lot of people that these Chinese-catered businesses are missing out on. On the flip side, we've seen what happens when government intervenes and imposes "culture" (bonjour, loi 101 et l'Office québécois de la langue française). It's fair of me to say we don't need language police coming to businesses and inspecting the lingua franca of the store, whether it be Canto/Mando, English, French, or Punjabi.

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Normally i am against any kind of government intervention but it has gotten to a point where new Canadians are not learning our languages, cultures and ways of life and are staying ignorant of Canadian ways. This is an English and French speaking country, you MUST learn one of those two languages if you are to become a Canadian and be integrated into society (in my opinion.) To not do so only promotes segregation and division. We are a nation built on multiculturalism and immigration but we need to take a stand on bending so much to make newcomers feel so comfortable. We need to strongly promote new Canadians integrating with society at all points including language, laws, accepting of other lifestyles (homosexuality for example) etc. Religion is basically one of the few things that is hands off.

The last thing I want to see are signs in foreign languages everywhere. it only promotes them to remain ignorant of our culture, laws, languages etc.

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It got out of hand 20 years ago with Aberdeen Centre.

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I grew up in vacouver and moved to kamloops 6 years ago, myself and my girlfriend took a trip and stayed in Richmond, I have never been to Aberdeen centre before, so decided to take her there shopping LOL biggest mistake of my life, we walked through the mall and felt like we were in a different country, so we proceeded to the nearest exit and took a cab to metro town.

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I find that many Canadians being bombarded by American culture and attitudes, do not appreciate the signficiant differences in out heritage, culture, government and laws.

The point I am making is that on private property people should be free to use whatever languages and signage they may choose as long as they are in compliance with human rights codes. We have more than enough regulatory legislation, we do not need more.

Personally I have never had a problem in any business in Richmond even when my Mandarin speaking significant other is absent.

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Because Asians are all zombies out to gorge on human flesh.

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Actually I was talking about all the "hello kitty" fashion, and the entire mall is full blown Chinese. They may as well have put the prices in Yuen instead of dollars.

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I've been at "that bank" for 30 years and my mortgage is there. I have no problem with Chinese signs, but have English also so I know what the hell is going on. And Wet, certainly private property owners are entitled to do what they please, but it's doing them a disservice to not cater to all. And is that really the way? - to not give a hoot? Works for us and it's our property? To not try to extend invitation to everyone in an effort to join together as a community? It's not really happening that way here.

I could play Rage Against the Machine at 3 in afternoon on my (private) deck every day but I don't because I care that those around me are comfortable and happy too. Richmond was always a community of "neighbours" that went out of their way to be friendly and accomodating to one another and to now say "private property - we don't care about you" is not something I welcome. It's very much an "all about me" attitude.

So is the important message of embracing everyone around us not somehow being lost here? Believe me, that's something that always made me feel special about the place I call home...I've never experienced this before. And it's nothing about racism - I grew up with mostly Japanese friends/neighbours. Native families (my Mom's best Bingo friends). We had people from Nigeria and Africa as neighbours...we all were family and worked together for mutual happiness. It takes a village stuff. We've always had a very diverse group in the community with people here from all over the world but there is definitely a feeling of entitlement that is new and unwelcoming. Gweilo license plate mentality that has no place here. We've had to deal with that and it's something new. It's not something we just cooked up because we're racists...it's a climate that is changing and not entirely in a positive way. There are kinks here. When people start to speak out and it just happens to involve a specific group of people, it doesn't mean their focus is not valid or it's a problem within them. But that's what happens - people throw up labels and stick their heads in the sand. All is not perfect, so why is it wrong to address it? Because feelings are hurt? Mine are important too.

It's not related to racism - that's just a good way for people to ignore sensitive issues that they don't want to look at. I attribute much of it to $$ that is now finding it's way here more than anything. But we're all of equal value as neighbours...that's an important message to remember. And to make everyone feel welcome makes it a better place for everyone...it's a two sided coin.

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Here's what's important to remember: racism is not acceptable. With that, people are quick to pull that card but it sometimes is a matter of discussion that involves race, but it doesn't make it racism. Just as some would sit down together for a drink, it doesn't mean it's alcoholism. Discussion is an important part of learning, understanding, calling on emapthy and patience and having people see things from sides other than their own (including me). So don't rule out discussion that stems from cultural differences and struggles...how on Earth can you "fix" problems if you're expected to ignore them? Bring people together if they can't communicate? If people feel frustrated, what better way to get to the bottom of that and try to resolve it than by examining it and trying to figure things out? But you're not allowed to do that it seems. Which is what some are suggesting.

People in Richmond have been a happy lot who seemingly love the little Island Community by nature and everyone is welcome. We love food - there are lots of different types to try. We love celebrations and have not one but several "New Years" celebrations. We thrive on making our differences something that makes us special - because we simply have more to offer in including everyone in the mix. It's always been a "community" feel but lately some of that is being lost. Is it one particular group of people responsible for that? No, of course not...in it being a beautiful location with the major airport located here, it's bound to draw people.

But to those who don't live here to know first hand, there certainly have been some recent struggles. Not long ago, some were bold in proclaiming how they feel about their arrival here with license plates that had the word "Gweido" on them. I'd never heard of that before. I wish I never had. Something new. Something concerning. Something there is no place for. People will quickly retort "a few bad apples" and suggest profiling and stereotyping...but it was in numbers...enough so that it made the news and had to be addressed. Hatred has no place here. Or anywhere. So do we just pretend that didn't happen? It makes people uneasy and take a defensive stance. That's how horrible divides start. But we'll let that one go because it is a few bad apples.

There were then letters to the editor of the local paper and full page articles that professed that "we don't want to assimilate and only want to educate our children here or use the medical system for our elderly". Those are quotes extracted from actual letters sent in to the local paper. "We have no intention of making this our home. I really do hope the Canadians can come to the realization that we are here not because we wanted to be Canadian, but simply because we like the resource this country provides to us".

There was recently an MP led press conference, but she made it clear it was for "Chinese only" media. Really? How is that "multi" cultural or giving everyone a fair shake? When leaders are pandering to one particular group of people, that's a problem.

These are hard pills to swallow. When there are wait lists a mile long for surgeries and we have overcrowded classrooms, of course this doesn't sit well. People are already frustrated so learning that there are those who want to use the resources but don't consider this home is cause for concern.

These are real issues. Of course, this isn't the first time this has ever happened....people do this all the time. People head off to Florida as they age, in order to take advantage of the warmer climate. Many here head across the border to gas up and get groceries because they're cheaper. Shoot down to Bellingham for back to school shopping and invade the malls there. It's also created problems and it's no secret that people get frustrated in these situations. They get territorial and protective and it's more of a natural reaction than anything. So we're all guilty of taking advantage of opportunities available in other places from time to time and it certainly is no crime. But it upsets people - and that's ok too.

So it's all about how you do it. If you show a complete disregard for those around you, it's bound to create friction and bad feelings. So it's all about tact and making an effort with a friendly approach. Reaching out to one another. Understanding the feelings of others and trying to work together. Being tolerant and patient at times.

People are quick to slam one another but a little tolerance from all sides is usually in order to make progress. So allow those who may feel slightly trampled on to voice that...it's not wrong to outwardly voice displeasure or discontent. It's actually quite healthy, because you're expressing it rather than acting on it.

This petition is part of that...people want their say. And last time I checked, in this great country we're still allowing for that.

(and sorry for the length of this, but I feel strongly about the right to be honest and open in discussion...even if it's uneasy for some...it's how you identify and resolve problems. Wet, this isn't just some backwood American redneck type NIMBY stuff...there are reasons people here are suddenly going "wait a minute...what is happening?" You're still entitled to do that. But this is an area that has always thrived on multiculturalism and has had that as part of its growth...so it's not a bunch of hood wearing maniacs drawing their line in the sand. There are real issues being created that need to be looked at)

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I'm a 1st gen asian and I'm starting to feel annoyed by other asians. It's exactly like other people have said already, you walk into a restaurant try to order something in english and they can't even understand you. Seriously? Other factors too that I won't say but I'm sure people can figure it out. I think the main problem is we used the immigration route too quickly (which I blame solely on our government) and now we have too many immigrants that are too comfortable living in their own culture that they feel no need to learn our culture. I'm hoping this will change in the next 20 years or so but somehow I doubt it. Also, it's people that want to take advantage of our system without integrating themselves that need to be kicked out. Complete drain on our system.

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Isn't a business putting itself at a disadvantage by marginalizing non-Chinese reading people? It seems like there would be enough of a reason from a business standpoint to ensure there is English.

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Isn't a business putting itself at a disadvantage by marginalizing non-Chinese reading people? It seems like there would be enough of a reason from a business standpoint to ensure there is English.

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It only pisses me off when official language speaking citizens are excluded on the basis of not being of the culture whether it be an item on a menu or a sale on an item or service. These companies should be shut down for their disrespect of our society

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Isn't a business putting itself at a disadvantage by marginalizing non-Chinese reading people? It seems like there would be enough of a reason from a business standpoint to ensure there is English.

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No "insular ghetto" that I can see. Just a rich and vibrant mix of cultures. I suppose if if one is a racist, bigot and/or xenophobe then one might feel threatened.

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I fully support the shops, stores and business owners that have signsin other languages.

Europeans came to Canada and brought english.

The French came to Canada and brought French.

Now, Indians and Chinese are coming to Canada and bringing there languages, I for one am happy that the lower mainland is slowly losing it`s `white` culture.

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