Quebec lawmakers to shopkeepers: don’t greet customers with “Bonjour hi”

A bilingual greeting might make English speakers feel too welcome, so the legislators of Quebec passed a unanimous though unenforceable resolution disapproving of its use by merchants [Dan Bilefsky, New York Times]


  • A few years back, I had a Quebec shopkeeper greet me with a “Bonjour.” I don’t speak French and just gave him a nod back, not really looking for a conversation anyway. So he switched languages: “Hola.” I spoke to him in Spanish, not having the time to find out how many languages he would try before he’d admit defeat and go for English.

  • There is an emotional attachment to French, and that’s understandable. Freedom is, of course, more important.

  • Just more Gallic snobbery. Saving you the expense of going to Paris to be treated like that.

  • Has anybody noticed that the same people who get mad when the subject of making English the official language of the US are OK with Quebec doing this?