From Pine View Farm

Tempest in a Steak Shop 1

Here in the greater Philadelphia Co-Prosperity Sphere, there’s been a nice little fuss about the properitor of Geno’s steaks (as in cheese steaks) refusing to serve persons who do not order in English.

The brash owner of Geno’s Steaks has sparked new controversy after two weeks of nearly nonstop national attention for signs posted near his take-out window that declare: “This is AMERICA. WHEN ORDERING, ‘SPEAK ENGLISH.’ ”

Vento, 66, grinned his way through a five-minute segment Friday on ABC’s Good Morning America. Since The Inquirer first reported on his signs two weeks ago, he has appeared left and right – though, politically, always the latter – on the Web, TV and talk radio as a proud, tattooed advocate of English only for the nation’s immigrants.

I have no wish to get into a philosophical discussion of this–it’s been beat to death (though I will point out that my ancestors, when they arrived here, already spoke English; had they thought like this gentleman, they would not have allowed his ancestors to make landfall).

My question is this:

When did rudeness become patriotism?


1 comment

  1. Opie

    June 11, 2006 at 8:45 pm

    I heard this story while on the road and I still don’t understand the issue. If nobody behind the counter understands the language the customer is speaking, having a sign saying you won’t serve people who can’t speak English is redundant. I’m honestly lost. What am I missing here?