‘Racist’ Beijing Restaurant Sign Taken Down

2013-02-28
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The window of a Beijing restaurant displays a sign refusing service to Japanese, Filipinos, and Vietnamese on Feb. 26, 2013.
AFP

Following a deluge of online protests, a Beijing restaurant has taken down an offensive sign barring customers from countries locked in territorial disputes with China.

The sign posted in the restaurant’s window read, “This shop does not welcome Japanese, Filipinos, Vietnamese, and dogs,” in English and Chinese.

Photos of the sign posted on the Facebook social networking site last week have gone viral, drawing international condemnation about racism and xenophobia.

On Thursday, the restaurant manager, surnamed Wang, told Agence France-Presse that he removed the sign “because it was a lot of bother.”

But he said he was not sorry about having put it up.

"I don't have any regrets," he said. "I was just getting too many phone calls about it."

Tense ties

The signs provoked outcry in the Philippines and Vietnam, which have overlapping claims with China over the Spratly and Paracel islands in the potentially resource-rich South China Sea.

In the Philippines, images of the Beijing restaurant sign were splashed across newspapers Wednesday.

The sign provoked thousands of comments on social networking sites and newspaper websites in Vietnam.

Vietnamese commentators said the racism evident in the restaurant sign was similar to China’s “bullying” of its neighbors, and the state-run Tuoi Tre newspaper called it an example of "extreme nationalism.”

Tensions over the islands sparked a series of anti-China protests over the past two years in Vietnamese cities, with activists criticizing Hanoi for not standing up enough to what they see as China’s “aggressive” foreign policy in the region.

Japan is involved in a separate dispute with China over islands in the East China Sea, which boiled over into a wave of anti-Japanese protests in Chinese cities last fall.

Reported by Rachel Vandenbrink.

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Wangchuk

from NYC

Another fact to point out is that during the 2008 Beijing Olympics, the Beijing police put up signs in hotels asking hotel owners to report any Tibetan or Uighur guests. Another example of official racism in the CCP.

Mar 08, 2013 12:32 PM

Wangchuk

from NYC

While certainly not universal, many Chinese hold racist & prejudiced views about other Asian peoples, including Japanese, Koreans, Filipinos, Mongolian, Tibetans and Uighurs. For example, many Chinese view Tibetans as lazy, superstitious & ungrateful & view traditional Tibetan culture as barbaric & backward. You have to remember that many Chinese view their own culture as superior to other cultures.

Mar 08, 2013 12:29 PM

Wales

Xenophobic, bigoted, and chauvinistic expressions of hatred such as that restaurant owner's are not necessarily racist but are no less ugly on that account.

Mar 04, 2013 11:06 AM

ann

from Oakland

Don't travel to China. Don't buy anything from China. You will see what happen.

Mar 01, 2013 10:49 PM

Mata Hari

"Racist"? That's downright misleading. You mean "Nationalist".

Western double-speak is likened by George Orwell to making murder respectable. A pox on your racism against the Chinese.

Feb 28, 2013 08:29 PM

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