Good for Business: ‘No Speak English–No Service’ Sign Leads to Restaurant’s Sales TRIPLING

Daily Mail (London), May 20, 2011

Some chefs spend their lifetimes unsuccessfully slogging away to improve business.

But all it took for Reedy Creek Diner chef Greg Simons in Lexington, North Carolina, was to put up a controversial language sign and he’s seen his sales treble.

Mr Simons put up the ‘No speak English. No service’ sign in March and says he’s received great support–with some people asking for souvenir copies to take home .

‘All these calls I’ve gotten from outside the country and the U.S. have all been positive, saying things like “Good for you, don’t take it down”,’ he told My Fox 8.

Mr Simons took down the sign in March after receiving a deluge of complaints at the time from people concerned it may have been racist.

It was put up after a group were offended because staff could not speak Spanish.

But Mr Simons said: ‘Everybody’s money is green as far as I’m concerned. It’s a communication thing. Nobody here speaks another language other than English.’

In fact, the sign has received so much attention that he has added a list of additional languages and makes photocopies for customers wanting to take one away.

The sign was originally in Spanish, French, Russian, Irish and German, but Mr Simons said he put it up because of an issue with a group of Hispanic customers.

Now he claims to have even had visits from people speaking foreign languages who come along with an interpreter.

One of the positive messages of support he has received said: ‘A common language is a unifier – you did nothing wrong, Mr Simons. Best wishes to you!’

‘I’m saddened by the fact that someone might want to see a negative than a positive it’s just how you look at things,’ he said.

Mr Simons began working at the Reedy Creek Diner in November 2009 before buying it eight months later but had a few ‘problems’ with Spanish-speaking customers.

A brick was thrown through a window shortly after he put the sign up, which also said: ‘God bless America and all who those who protect and serve our great country.’

Hispanic or Latino people make up 8 per cent of North Carolina’s population, and last year’s 111 per cent increase was the state’s biggest ethnic group rise in a decade.

full sign

The full sign.

 

close-up

Close-up of the sign.

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  • Alexandra

    I would have put up a sign that said “Se Habla Ingles Aqui” (“English spoken here”).

    Good for Mr. Simons! This is America, our de facto national language is English.

  • Anonymous

    So he put it back up after a bunch of entitled, non-English speaking Hispanics got pissy with him for not having one of their own on staff to communicate with them. Good for him.

  • White Guy In Japan

    I saw this article in grad school. We were discussing bilingual education and “linguistic imperialism”. Many of the students stated that the restaurant owner was racist. End of discussion. Never mind that he states that anybody can patronize his restaurant as long as they speak English. No, that is racist.

  • Miss Whitey

    It’s too bad Mr. Simons felt compelled to take the sign down.

    Nevertheless, I credit him with putting the sign in his window in the first place. It’s not easy to make such a statement in politically-correct America.

    When I visit North Carolina, I’ll be sure to visit Reedy Creek Diner and thank him for expressing an idea that millions of Americans agree with.

  • Anonymous

    “an issue with a group of Hispanic customers” I remember back in the 80`s when a friend of mine landed a plum gig at Houlihan`s in the mall of our Southwestern city. Tips, girls and colored lights. But he said he just couldn`t take another year of Easter Week when the Mexican elite would pour North for a week of shopping and dining with their families.

    It seems that they were worse behaved than the lowest peons, because they treated him like one!! Whistling and rapping of jewerly on the counter as a demand for service were two of the things that bothered him the most for some reason. He had a host of other sins but since I was hearing this at his new job he didn`t want to waste a good Guiness pondering the past…

  • olewhitelady

    I assume the vast majority of non-English speakers in the U.S. comprises illegals, who try to avoid places they’re not welcome. All someone has to do is call the cops, and they may be spending time in jail if not on some transport headed south of the border. Blacks used to stay where they weren’t wanted for similar reasons.

    I imagine this restaurant owner was tired of uncivilized customers making scenes because the employees don’t speak fluent Spanish. I can just hear the shouting, cursing, and threatening that probably ensued. Americans would be driven away in droves.

    Now, whether this sign is up or not, illegals have the message, loud and clear.

  • Dario

    It’s amazing how we have gone on the defensive in our own country!

    In my town, the city board sends out messages, information, and important documents in three languages – English, Spanish, and Polish. Even the trash cans the city gives out are trilingual. Not to mention all the signs in the local high school.

    Interestingly enough, the city is heavily segregated. The Polish community lives among its own, Hispanics with their own, and blacks likewise. Despite the city’s efforts in trying to make this a multiracial, multicultural, paradise.

  • Anonymous

    Americans need more, many more situations like this. Don’t let language become a political football or a “minority issue” like it is here in Canada. You’ll never hear the end of it.

  • Bandmo

    How about a sign that said “No Shirt, No Shoes, No service” and a VET came in a wheelchair with no legs should he be held to a different standard just because he didn’t have shoes on? Don’t laugh, coming soon.

  • P Norman

    Of course, the sign ends up being a ‘Downer’ by envoking that proven NEOCON line “God Bless All Those Who Protect and Serve.” We all know that NO ONE does this (from Cops to the Military). They should have left this last blurb off as it negates everything else he wrote.

  • Anonymous

    Good for him. A true Patriot. He will probably get sued and law enforcement will investigate. North Carolina is well on its way to third-worldism too.

  • Duke

    Since it is a business he could just put up a sign saying, “You can order in your native language, but we charge $5 to translate” and not “offended” anyone. Get it, its like ordering extra hot sauce, you pay more for it.

  • Michael C. Scott

    The largest nonwhite minority group in North Carolina is blacks. They speak English (well, sort-of.) End of racism complaint.

  • Anonymous

    It seems the “melting pot of multiculturalism and diversity” is starting to stop boiling and becoming frigid. Hopefully more businesses in this country and all other westernized countries such as Europe, Australia, etc. will follow this example.

  • Anonymous

    you can get an education in Europe by buying a carton of juice. A dozen languages on every side. Our kids used to read the roster to see if they could identify them all.

    How come when you go to Europe, where every country has it’s own language and several dialects, just about everybody speaks English as well? When I went to Holland, every busdriver and every shopgirl was fluent in English. My own children speak three languages well and a couple so so. All the Amish are bilingual. In the Czech Republic, the young people I came in contact with try out their foreign language skills on us.I don’t care, and actually understand if at home immigrants speak their native language,but it is disgraceful for them to not learn English as fast as possible.

  • kgb

    Perhaps he doesn’t want his place getting TRASHED like all these Denny’s franchises that are routinely visited by African-Americans.

  • Anonymous

    Reply to #15;

    The mistake your making is to assume that being a bilingual person and state control and enforcement of a foreign language are both good things. They are not. In the Netherlands speaking only Dutch limits you to one small country. Acquiring English language skills opens many doors. So people VOLUNTARILY learn it. It is in their interest to do so. It would be wrong though to say that the country should function internally with two languages.

  • Former German visitor

    Apart from the fact that it’s just absurd to call it “racist” when you’re asked to speak a certain LANGUAGE (not to belong to a certain RACE) I have to say that being German and also a former visitor of the USA I would not feel offended ONE IOTA.

    In fact, when I was e.g. visiting the United Kingdom with a study group we were told by our German “guides” to speak English even to each other, when there were Englishmen around – because it would be unmannered not to do so.

    It seems like the words “racist/Nazi/…” are just the hammers to break down European civilization.

  • sedonaman

    I was stationed in Korea while in the Air Force, and it didn’t take me long to realize my discomfort was due to my illiteracy, even though most Koreans understood some English because they were required by law to study it in school. I signed up for a night course in the Korean language.

    Some years later, I vacationed in Germany, and it became clear REAL QUICK that I had to learn some German.

    In both situations, locals fell all over themselves trying to help me wherever I went simply because I made the effort. It was a particular compliment to Koreans because most Americans felt it beneath them to bother, and Koreans knew it.

  • Anonymous

    18 — Former German visitor wrote at 1:41 PM on May 24

    “It seems like the words “racist/Nazi/…” are just the hammers to break down European civilization.”

    —————————————————————-

    Isn’t that the truth! Another one is using Hitler, and the holocaust to demonize the German people, (after DECADES!) thereby demonizing ALL those of European extraction (Whites) including Whites in the USA. The brainwashing from our enemy is now complete.

  • Anonymous

    Something we all need to remember and to have a counter attack.

    —————————————————————

    The Art of Propaganda: 7 Common Tactics Used to Influence Behavior

    In 1939, the New York-based Institute for Propaganda Analysis published an article on the seven common propaganda devices with the aim of encouraging critical, rational thinking amongst citizens.

    Here are the seven common propaganda devices:

    1. Name-calling

    This involves the use of words to connect a person or idea to a negative concept. The aim is to make a person reject something without examining the evidence because of the negative associations attached to it.

    Examples of words include ‘Terrorist‘, ‘Nazi‘ and ‘Queer’.

    Name Calling is used as a substitute for arguing the merits of an idea, belief, or proposal. It is often employed using sarcasm and ridicule in political cartoons and writing.

    2. Glittering Generalities

    The opposite of name-calling, this involves the use of highly valued concepts and beliefs which attract general approval and acclaim. These are vague, emotionally attractive words like ‘freedom‘, ‘honor‘ and ‘love‘.

    This method works because these concepts/words mean different things to different people, while still having a positive implication.

    When someone talks to us about democracy, we immediately think of our own definite ideas about democracy, the ideas we learned at home, at school, and in church.

    Our first and natural reaction is to assume that the speaker is using the word in our sense, that he believes as we do on this important subject. This lowers our ’sales resistance’ and makes us far less suspicious..

    3. Transfer

    This is a technique used to carry over the authority and approval of something you respect and revere to something the propagandist would have you accept. One does this by projecting the qualities of an entity, person or symbol to another through visual or mental association.

    This stimulates the recipient and makes him/her identify with recognized authorities.

    In the Transfer device, symbols are constantly used. The cross represents the Christian Church. The flag represents the nation. Cartoons like Uncle Sam represent a consensus of public opinion. Those symbols stir emotions. At their very sight, with the speed of light, is aroused the whole complex of feelings we have with respect to church or nation.

    4. Testimonial

    The aim of testimonial is to leverage the experience, authority and respect of a person and use it to endorse a product or cause. Testimonials appeal to emotions instead of logic because they generally provide weak justifications for the product or a cause of action.

    ‘The Times said,’ ‘John L. Lewis said…,’ ‘Herbert Hoover said…’, ‘The President said…’, ‘My doctor said…,’ ‘Our minister said…’ Some of these Testimonials may merely give greater emphasis to a legitimate and accurate idea, a fair use of the device; others, however, may represent the sugar-coating of a distortion, a falsehood, a misunderstood notion, an anti-social suggestion…”

    5. Plain Folks

    A technique whereby the propagandist positions him or herself as an average person just like the target audience, thereby demonstrating the ability to empathize and understand the concerns/feelings of the masses.

    One may perform ordinary actions or use language and mannerisms to reach the audience and cohere with their point of view.

    We are all familiar with candidates who campaign as political outsiders, promising to “clean out the barn” and set things straight in Washington. The political landscape is dotted with politicians who challenge a mythical “cultural elite,” presumably aligning themselves with “ordinary Americans.” As baby boomers approach their sixth decade, we are no longer shocked by the sight of politicians in denim who listen to rock n roll.

    6. Card Stacking

    A way of manipulating audience perceptions by emphasizing one side of an argument which reinforces your position, while repressing/minimizing dissenting opinions. An example of this articles/media events which compare and contrast the best possible scenarios with the worse examples.

    Assume a newspaper editor were in favor of the non-enforcement of immigration laws. Should the issue of immigration law enforcement ever be debated among legislators, the editor might publish articles and editorials that ignore all mention of illegal alien criminals, gang members, and prisoners and report only on decent, hard-working foreigners instead. This sort of card stacking could go on for weeks and influence public opinion on the issue.

    7. Bandwagon

    The basic premise for the bandwagon technique is to suggest that ’since everyone is doing it, you should too’. It’s aim to persuade people to follow a general trend by reinforcing the human need to participate on the winning side. One can suggest to an audience that he or she will lose out by not moving with the rest of the crowd, thus preying on their insecurities and fears.

    With the aid of all the other propaganda devices, all of the artifices of flattery are used to harness the fears and hatreds, prejudices and biases, convictions and ideals common to a group. Thus is emotion made to push and pull us as members of a group onto a Band Wagon.

  • Firepower

    It’s always telling, how FOREIGN papers are the ones to cover these stories and not US papers.

    Keeping the inner workings hidden of the MSM propaganda machine are paramount.

  • Urban Teacher

    #7 “It’s amazing how we have gone on the defensive in our own country!”

    It’s not our country anymore.

    Which is why we only read about this in a foreign (UK) newspaper.

  • Anonymous

    A brick was thrown through one of his windows? This is some how “ok” because it was in defiance, but the restaurant owner is a racist? It’s time white people met force with equal or greater force, fight back whitey!!!!

  • Harumphty Dumpty

    “Mr Simons took down the sign in March after receiving a deluge of complaints at the time from people concerned it may have been racist.”

    The phrase “people concerned it may have been racist” strikes me as a bit of a hoot. It makes it sound as if people who are “concerned” about racism are polite and tentative in expressing their “concern.” I really haven’t noticed that.

  • Anonymous

    I am not surprised that latino customers complained that no one in the restaurant spoke spanish. They are so used to having spanish speakers EVERYWHERE they go in businesses, that they must have been truly surprised.

    Where I’m at, every bus boy, every mid level restaurant manager, every other employee of Target or Walmoart, every auto mechanic and on and on and on are latinos.

    Can you imagine their indignation? We come to ze resarant and no abody speaka espanol!