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Target Store Puts English Only Signs In New Development - Area Latinos Claim Ethnic Cleansing, Racism

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A new Target store in Columbia Heights in Washington DC decided to only put English signs in its store. Woe the backlash from the community who sees this as racist and being against Latinos who are demanding bilingual signs. Hmmm, OK let's take their argument a little further. Why not trilingual signs? I mean if this isn't about race from their side then all the signs should be in every language, not just a second copy in Spanish only. Right?

The arguments in this article at Campus Progress (an oxymoron if any there were for an article on economic progress being slowed by race baiters) would have you believe that this a white conspiracy to impose ethnic cleansing on the community. That the owners of Target hate Latinos and that they'll soon be loaded onto cattle trains for the gas chambers.

Despite the fact that Columbia Heights has a high Spanish-speaking population, the store has no bilingual signs. Given the demographics of Columbia Heights, Target’s decision sends a clear message: This store is for the new Columbia Heights, not the current Columbia Heights. ...

That's right, the trains are lining up. They'll be dropping off rich white people and exporting poor Latino people.

The absence of bilingual signs in the new Target (which has enshrined its interior with red-and-white framed displays of cheerful multiethnic people) is disconcerting given the store’s immediate vicinity. According to the D.C. Office on Latino Affairs, nearly half of the District’s Latino community lives in Ward One, which includes the neighborhoods of Columbia Heights, Mount Pleasant, and Adams Morgan. ... The Office of Latino Affairs also estimates that one in three Latinos in the District has difficulty with English. The neighborhood around the new Target abounds with Latino culture. ... 14th St. NW immediately to the north contains numerous establishments with almost exclusively Spanish signage. ...

They really would like Target to have exclusively Spanish signs. That is evident, but they can't come out and say that. So instead they say a lack of Spanish anywhere is racist. I'd also like to point out that they say that only 1/3rd of Latinos in the area have difficulty with English. So the reality is that they want to perpetuate Spanish. Spanish speakers, according to them, are too dumb to look down an aisle and see whether it contains mops or canned foods.

Target’s signage is fodder for community activists who say that the Target and other new stores are being built mostly for the sake of Columbia Heights’ future residents, not its current ones.

There they go again with the "round 'em up" conspiracy statements.

What do the "Latino community leaders" (note that they aren't American community leaders, but those who only care about Latinos not Americans as a whole) have to say? What do those in ivory towers - who probably don't even live near this run-down community - have to say?

... “They have a responsibility to the community. A large portion of their clientele is Latino,” [George Escobar, media spokesperson for the Office on Latino Affairs] said. “There have been mixed messages, though. We have to have a wait-and-see attitude with them.” Walda Katz-Fishman, a professor of sociology at Howard University, was less guarded in her assessment about Target’s choice to only display signs in English. “This represents a transition of who is living in the neighborhood. They are not sensitive to the community. The project is for the people who are coming in, not community residents,”

*Choo Choo*

More talk of ending the glorious ghetto that currently exists and improving the community and this portion of America as a bad thing continues below.

... Parisa Norouzi, co-director of Empower DC, an organization that assists lower-income District residents with housing, child services, and government accountability, was also pessimistic about the signs. “The lack of bilingual signs is indicative of who the development project was planned for,” Norouzi said. “If the Target was planned to serve the residents of the community, [accommodations, including signs] would have been a major factor. This is a good example of a major realtor feeling they have no need to serve their community.”

Amazing how having no Spanish on the signs could cause such an uproar isn't it? Well, not really.

For at least the past decade these "Latino groups" have been trying to play a guilt card against Americans. They are trying to play on the guilt of past things in American history such as slavery that some Americans still carry, even though no American born in this country alive today has owned a slave or lived in an America where slavery was legal. They're trying to say that America - the most diverse country on Earth - is racist. And they are saying that we should bow down before their demands in order to prove that we're not.

Target attempts to defend itself by pointing out it has Latino employees and even some that are bilingual. Obviously that is not enough though for these racists. They want it all in Spanish or they're going to string you up and try to ruin your business. And now we come to the most idiotic statement in the whole of this "article". The last question in the paragraph below.

Target Spokesperson Elizabeth Wolf argues that Target’s commitment to diversity is evident in the relevance of items the store carries and the level of respect it gives its diverse guests. ... Wolf stressed that Target employs team members who are available to answer question from Spanish-speaking guests. But how accommodating can Spanish-speaking team members be when nothing in the store is written in Spanish?

How accommodating indeed! I mean we must have everything written in Spanish. All items sold in the store must have everything written in Spanish on it as well because, you know, a bilingual employee there couldn't possibly help you if it's not written in Spanish on the can or on the sign.

.. the store’s decision not to include bilingual signage reflects the deeper fears of certain residents and observers: that the real question about Target and Columbia Heights gentrification isn’t whether it will have short-term benefits, but rather whether, in the long run, it will severely reduce the socioeconomic and racial diversity of the neighborhood by spurring the development of more luxury and upper-class housing. Target’s weak grasp on neighborhood demographics is unlikely to assuage these fears.

Wow, we wouldn't want to actually improve an area. I mean making it cleaner and nicer would ruin the good old ghetto feel of the area.

I have a suggestion to those who don't speak English, don't want to learn English, find it frustrating that American stores aren't providing Spanish signs or those who are appalled at this situation of lack of bilingual signs. That suggestion is that they can choose to go to a place where everything is in Spanish. Where everyone speaks Spanish. Where all the people are Latinos. Where they will feel at home.

Go To Another Country

That's right! There are already countries that have exactly the setup that you want! They have all your demands already met! Move there and stop being a ridiculous and ignorant fool who demands others change because you are offended that they don't do it all exactly how you want it to be.

That is of course unless you actually have an ulterior motive, like trying to take over large swaths of the United States that will then only allow one race there. An area that only speaks a language other than English and discriminates against all others. In that case, why not just state it outright, because your "articles" and statements above are quite obvious in their intent. That you want segregation, but segregation where your race gets more than everyone else and the rest of the country is left to suffer.

Tipped by: Inside Charm City

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Posted by Digger on March 28, 2008 02:57 PM (Permalink)

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Let's see here, I don't mean to be insensitive but SCR-W area Latinos. Who the h-ll do these people think they are? This isn't Mexico and there shouldn't even be a need to put English only signs anywhere. English should be a given but then we have LA RAZA enablers like Democratic "Boss"(what a joke) Nancy Pelosi, who can't dream up enough ideas that empower people who have broken into this nation without permission. I can't believe the arrogance. No wonder so many Americans tell some of these folks to just get the h-ll out of here.

Posted by: Bobby on March 29, 2008 12:49 PM

I hope this spreads like wild fire across America, am going to send it to everyone in my address book hope you all do the same and ask them to forward....it time to take the spanish signs down in our country. One of our greatests freedoms is if you don't like America you have the choice to leave...get out!

Posted by: SOSAFORUS on March 29, 2008 02:49 PM

Good job Target. This is AMERICA. You come here and you learn to speak English. I don't go to Ukraine and demand everything be written in Ukranian, because that is THEIR LANGUAGE. The nerve of these people is amazing. We will not spoon feed you. Learn our language, and if you don't know it - then go back to your country.

Posted by: HOSS on March 30, 2008 02:53 PM

I encourage everyone to call Target and tell them to NOT CAVE INTO THE PRESSURE TO PUT SIGNS IN SPANISH AND IF THEY DO YOU WILL BOYCOTT SHOPPING THERE! Target is a very liberal MN based company who never does anything for the military. They wouldn't even let the Salvation Army ring the bell in front of stores recently. I don't know if that changed, but that's anti-American! This company, if any company would do it, will cave to the pressure. If they do, I won't be shopping there anymore. Vote with your dollars and tell them so. p.s. Google: Pro English, a non profit group that's trying to English to be the OFFICIAL language of the US. If this finally happens we won't be spending MILLIONS of dollars catering to people who don't even care to learn English, much less speak it. No more PC bullcrap! You can send pre written emails from Pro English's website to your elected officials. The squeeky wheel gets the oil...

Posted by: April on March 31, 2008 12:14 PM

One more thing -- when you go to vote notice the signs in front of the building. Most of them now say "Vote here and in between here it says "aqui" -- Spanish for here" -- WTF??? Complain about it to the board of supervisors. If you can't read/write English, then don't vote!

Posted by: April on March 31, 2008 12:17 PM

“The lack of bilingual signs is indicative of who the development project was planned for” ...
That would be American citizens and immigrants; immigrants who promise to assimilate and LEARN ENGLISH, which English only signs will help facilitate.

Only illegal aliens will be negatively affected as they want to turn our country bilingual; how rude.

And what does language have to do with RACE? I find racism a very charge (at least I used to) but it is wrongfully used so much these days it has lost it's impact.

Posted by: ken pope on March 31, 2008 12:33 PM

I am in the midst of doing a large home remodeling project. When I stopped at Lowe’s to pick up a few of the first essential products, I was shocked to see that every item I picked up had large Spanish instructions posted. I found this offensive. I wouldn’t mind if the instructions were smaller and in several foreign languages but everything in the store blared out in Spanish. The final straw was when I picked up a paint pamphlet with a skew of coIors I liked and the WHOLE pamphlet was in Spanish. I felt like I was shopping in a Spanish country and not Connecticut.

I do speak Spanish and French and can understand the Spanish instructions. However, I feel that this is counter productive and does not help the Spanish population assimilate into our society as our ancestors did, including my grandparents. My grandparents enhanced their English skills by reading English newspapers and engaging in English conversations in places where they did business. They were proud to be Americans and learned the native language.

Since Home Depot appears to be doing the same thing, I will be shredding my credit cards and cancelling my accounts. As for the cabinets and lumber I need, the local hardware and lumber companies and cabinet makers can provide me with those supplies. It may mean having to shop in a few different places but at least I won’t feel like a foreigner in my own country.

Posted by: Denise Alden on July 18, 2008 12:14 AM

How dare these foreigners insist that I learn to speak their language? I refused to learn stuff in school, and I ain't about to start now. If I was able to understand them, I wouldn't be able to make fun of them anymore, and that's not a right I'm ready to give up.

Posted by: Michael Channing on January 25, 2010 04:35 PM

Do as the Romans do. I doubt you'd be speaking Spanish in Rome, or anywhere else, where Spanish is not the official language. If you live in a country where the majority speaks English, then you'd have to learn it to communicate. Then again, some of these a-holes come here expecting people to accommodate them. Look at all the welfare offices: Besides English most of the signs are in Spanish. That's not fair: Other people also speak English, Chinese, Hindi, Haitian Creole, etc... Even though, NYC gov't says "We have signs in 14 languages": That's only 14 languages in pamphlets for those who work for the city!!! Now, it's required that the 6 most popular language applications be put out: English, Chinese, Arabic, Haitian Creole, Russian & Spanish.

I'd vote for "No Spanish signage" if there were such a choice. And they should get rid of "Press 1 for English" and "Marque 2 para Espanol"!!! English is the de facto language here. Learn it or GET THE HELL OUT!!!

Good job, Target.

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