• Mon
  • Dec 22, 2014
  • Updated: 2:01am
NewsChina

I'm not sorry, says Beijing restaurant boss as he removes ‘racist’ sign

International backlash over sign barring customers from nations involved in maritime disputes

PUBLISHED : Thursday, 28 February, 2013, 1:51pm
UPDATED : Thursday, 28 February, 2013, 2:35pm

A defiant Beijing restaurant manager refused to apologise on Thursday despite removing a “racist” sign barring citizens of states in maritime disputes with China, along with dogs, following an international outcry.

The notice in the window of the Beijing Snacks restaurant read: “This shop does not receive the Japanese, the Philippines, the Vietnamese and dog(s)” in both Chinese and English.

But despite taking down the sign after accusations of racism, the manager said he had no regrets and would not apologise for any offence caused.

Images of the sign went viral in Vietnam and were splashed across newspapers in the Philippines on Wednesday. Both are involved in bitter territorial disputes with China over islands in the South China Sea.

Maybe people misunderstood our meaning... it only said we would not serve customers from those countries
Restaurant manager

The manager, surnamed Wang, said it was taken down “because it was a lot of bother”.

“I don’t have any regrets,” he said. “I was just getting too many phone calls about it.”

He seemed surprised at the attention it had generated but said he would not apologise for any offence caused, suggesting it may have been misinterpreted.

“Maybe people misunderstood our meaning... it only said we would not serve customers from those countries,” he said.

The sign’s wording was particularly inflammatory as it recalled China’s colonial era, when British-owned establishments barred Chinese from entering.

A sign outside a Shanghai park supposedly reading “No Dogs and Chinese allowed” became part of Communist propaganda, and was featured in the 1972 Bruce Lee film “Fists of Fury” -- but many historical experts say no such notice ever existed.

The restaurant sign provoked an outcry in Vietnam and the Philippines, generating thousands of posts on Vietnamese social networking sites and newspaper comment threads.

Filipinos greeted the photo with a mixture of fury and amusement. “Blatant racism at Beijing Restaurant,” journalist Veronica Pedrosa wrote in one widely-shared tweet.

China and Japan have a separate acrimonious dispute over islands in the East China Sea, and ongoing disagreements about Japan’s colonial past.

The cramped establishment’s specialty is soup made with pork offal and gravy-soaked biscuits. “This is what old Beijingers like to eat,” a white-hatted chef said.

Share

More on this story

For unlimited access to:

SCMP.com SCMP Tablet Edition SCMP Mobile Edition 10-year news archive
 
 

 

 
 
 
 
 
16

This article is now closed to comments

Sunny
When the anti-Japanese protest were happening in mainland China, Chinese citizens could peacefully drink a beer in Yokohama, Japan, without any fears, retribution and continue to enjoy their peaceful freedom in a ‘democratic’ society.
In contrast, Japanese living in China are given threats that they will be taken as hostages and are banned from restaurants from drinking and eating.
It is clear for the international community to see how much change is needed in China for it to be even considered a respectable, modern country working towards the good of a inter-dependant global world. Some of the behaviour borders on embarrassing for the world to witness.
And China’s government continues to proclaim the rhetoric of ‘China’s peaceful rise’ to the rest of the world. How can we have trust in this message, when citizens from other countries don’t even have the sense of ‘peace’ while in the country? Talk about irony…
spunkyjj
By your logic, a sign that forbids Chinese from entering should also be consider non-racist.
caractacus
There never was a sign in a Shanghai park reading "No Chinese or dogs allowed". It was very probably racist propaganda calculated to inflame endemic passions against foreigners - a common tactic used since the first contacts with the West and against other ethnic peoples long before. The most remarkable thing about the posts on this website is that the Chinese commentators are completely oblivious to their own racism. A characteristic of Chinese born and raised in a Chinese environment is that they always choose to view themselves as "victims" while nurturing extreme, spiteful resentment for ever against any and every race they perceive has wronged China. They are incapable of looking in the mirror to see their own wrongs against other races. Perhaps they don't care what their country has done to destroy or damage other cultures.
I don't know when, if ever, they will grow up and stop carrying racist baggage in their psychology. They are brought up by their families and peers to think this way and the quantum mass of this racism perpetuates the bigotry which Chinese governments have always been ready to exploit when it suits their purpose. What a sad situation.
whymak
Kudos to your opinion piece.
Indeed, there was never opium sold to the Chinese. The Chinese were naturally born addicts. They provoked the British into war when they reneged on free trade agreements and stole British properties in China.
There was never slave traf****. Those black folks in West Africa simply indentured themselves to work in Barbados sugar mills and cotton fields in the US Confederate South because there were no jobs or food available at home.
Sadly indeed the noblesse oblige of white folks is so misunderstood. Worse, those evil yellow people, feeling powerless and envious of the successes of the West, have been slandering the benevolent intent of white men's burden for one and a half centuries.
Ultimately, nuking them into oblivion might be the best solution.
ssslmcs01
I can't see anything racist on the sign in the picture. I can only see that the restaurant in the picture doesn't allow people of certain nationalities to eat there. It has nothing to do with race whatsoever!
Camel
Well what do you expect after over 200 years of humilation by the foreign powers the people now do?
@caractacus,
I respectfully disagree. There was a sign in Shanghai which showed that Chinese had no entry to a park. Only the sign was next to a sign that showed that Dogs are not allowed to the park.
The people in China are getting now more education than before. That is why they behaving now like this towards foreigners. Now they have the chance to learn every single details about the colonial times and the invasion by Japan. That was before not the case. So if you are Westerner I would expect ......
And, yes there is a lot of racism in China. The Chinese can be very racist, just like the arrogant Westerners, who thinks they are much more forward, advance and superiour and treat other cultures accordingly. Nothing's changed
qiaohan
...and tens of millions never starved under Mao, the word democracy doesn't exist, hundreds weren't murdered in Tiananmen in 1989, the falun gong is an evil cult, the Dalai Lama is a "splittist", Tibetans have freedom of religion, the Japanese never apologized, Liu Xiaobo is a criminal...
Camel
Millions starved under Mao, Millions starved during civil war, millions starved during the Qing Dynasty ..... actually in every single period of Chinese History.
Democracy is a luxury the Western countries can afford and finance. Once they are incabable of financing the Democracy, it won't take long that the system will fail. The people will chose anything but Rights, Freedom and Democracy. Just look to Europe or partly the USA.
....
well you seem very angry.
babyhenry
Well his list is not complete..... Where are the Americans? Indians? Russians?
Kind of like boycotting Japanese cars for American Cars, when the Americans are backing the Japanese & Philipinos & Russian India backing vietname so why not boycott its backers too?
jetfighter.jetfighter

The rise of nationalism and blatant racism is condoned by the authorities as the sign has been posted since last September, i.e., almost 6 months.
****eyedrd.org/2013/02/racist-sign-of-beijing-restaurant-against-japanese-vietnamese-and-filipino-condoned-by-authorities.html#more-20253

Pages

Login

SCMP.com Account

or