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"This is America: WHEN ORDERING 'PLEASE SPEAK ENGLISH,'"


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Seriously though, is there anyone here hyper-sensitive enough to have thought this racist when you saw it?

http://www.breitbart.com/article.php?id=D8...&show_article=1

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PHILADELPHIA (AP) - The owner of a famous cheesesteak shop did not discriminate when he posted signs asking customers to speak English, a city panel ruled Wednesday.

In a 2-1 vote, a Commission on Human Relations panel found that two signs at Geno's Steaks telling customers, "This is America: WHEN ORDERING 'PLEASE SPEAK ENGLISH,'" do not violate the city's Fair Practices Ordinance.

Shop owner Joe Vento has said he posted the signs in October 2005 because of concerns over immigration reform and an increasing number of people in the area who could not order in English.

Vento has said he never refused service to anyone because they couldn't speak English. But critics argued that the signs discourage customers of certain backgrounds from eating at the shop.

Commissioners Roxanne E. Covington and Burt Siegel voted to dismiss the complaint, finding that the sign does not communicate that business will be "refused, withheld or denied."

In a dissenting opinion, Commissioner Joseph J. Centeno said he thought the signs did discourage some customers.

"The sign appeared immediately above another sign that had the following words: 'Management Reserves the Right to Refuse Service,'" Centeno wrote.

Geno's and its chief rival across the street, Pat's King of Steaks, are two of the city's best known cheesesteak venues. A growing number of Asian and Latin American immigrants have moved into the traditionally Italian neighborhood in recent years.

Vento had threatened to go to court if he lost. His attorney, Albert G. Weiss, said he was "pleasantly surprised" by Wednesday's decision.

"We expected that this was not going to go our way," Weiss said.

In February 2007, the commission found probable cause against Geno's for discrimination, alleging that the policy discourages customers of certain backgrounds from eating there.

The case went to a public hearing, where an attorney for the commission argued that the sign was about intimidation, not political speech. The matter then went to the three-member panel for a ruling.

W. Nick Taliaferro, the commission's executive director, said he would not appeal.

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silentbob1272 (3/20/2008)
To refuse service would smack of xenophobia, to ask that customers speak the language of their country is perfectly fine.............except for foreign tourists, they may have cause to not like the sign, otherwise perfectly fine, and a little funny.

A sign saying "Our Cashiers only speak english" would be perfectly fine. A sign that said I nostri cassieri parlano soltanto inglese would be funny.

"This is America" isn't that funny. It's xenophobic.

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pencilpusher (3/20/2008)
Nah... I hate it when I go to an ATM and it asks me "English or Spanish?" Well Geez Louise, we're standing in North Carolina aren't we?Take a wild guess.

What next " Dollars or Pesos?"

With the federal reserve's recent penchant for devaluing our currency, make mine pesos please.:crying:

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gritzblitz56 (3/20/2008)
pencilpusher (3/20/2008)
Nah... I hate it when I go to an ATM and it asks me "English or Spanish?" Well Geez Louise, we're standing in North Carolina aren't we?Take a wild guess.

What next " Dollars or Pesos?"

With the federal reserve's recent penchant for devaluing our currency, make mine pesos please.:crying:

LOL

I have a yen for Euros myself

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It could have been phrased better, but I doubt it's racist.  Geno's and Pat's are the same places that belittle customers for having anything omitted from a sandwich, or taking longer than four seconds to order.  The abuse is part of the charm. 

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i didn't know customers ordering in spanish was such a big problem.

personally i can't stand it when my order-taker at a fast food joint can't speak english. if it's a mexican or cuban restaurant, that's one thing, and i appreciate it for authenticity and part of the atmosphere.

but when i have to repeat "2-piece white with a biscuit" like 8 times and the dumb broad STILL doesn't understand me and she can't even say the dollar amount that i owe, that pizzes me off. not because i'm racist or xenophobic, but because that is crappy customer service.

and god help you if you make a complicated order like "no tomatoes" or "a cup of water, not the bottled water".

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XLDenaliReturns (3/20/2008)
i didn't know customers ordering in spanish was such a big problem.

personally i can't stand it when my order-taker at a fast food joint can't speak english. if it's a mexican or cuban restaurant, that's one thing, and i appreciate it for authenticity and part of the atmosphere.

but when i have to repeat "2-piece white with a biscuit" like 8 times and the dumb broad STILL doesn't understand me and she can't even say the dollar amount that i owe, that pizzes me off. not because i'm racist or xenophobic, but because that is crappy customer service.

and god help you if you make a complicated order like "no tomatoes" or "a cup of water, not the bottled water".

amen brutha

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As a privately owned Restaurant doesn't he have the right to serve anyone he wants or doesn't want? The only problem I have with the sign is if you can't speak English you probably can't read English so it's not like any foreigners would get offended anyway but the sign would not serve it purpose.

But as a private business owner he should have the right to serve who ever he wants however he wants, if he loses out on business because of it that is his problem, people can always go somewhere else.

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