Penalize English!

Let's penalize English!


A government proposes to penalize the use of English. 

It considers that English “demeans” and “degrades” the common national language .  

It condemns “Anglomania,” and fines for violators can range from $5,000 to $147,000.

No, it's not in ugly Quebec that this evil government is rampant, it's in Italy! Yes Sir, si Signore!


When I read this news relayed by CNN, I confess that I fell out of my chair (since since the advertisement for the peregrine falcon I no longer say “flabbergasted”).

According to this bill, anyone who occupies a employment in the civil service must have oral and written knowledge and fluency in Italian. 

It is also forbidden to use English in official documents, including acronyms and job titles in companies doing business in Italy (CEO instead of CEO, for example).

Foreign companies would be forced to have Italian versions of all internal regulations and employment contracts. 

Still according to CNN: “The first article of the law guarantees that, even in the departments where we do business with non-Italian speakers, Italian is the language of use. Article 2 states that Italian would be compulsory for the promotion and use of public services and goods, anywhere in the national territory”.

Look at what the bill states: “This is not just a matter of fashion, because fashions change. But Anglomania has repercussions for society as a whole.”

If Italians feel threatened by English and they feel the need to protect their national language, are they going to be accused of being intolerant, too nationalistic and withdrawn? 

Will they be told that they need to be more bilingual, that it's chill, cool, to have the vibe, man and that defending one's national language is outdated, outdated, has been?


Speaking of “Anglomania”, do you want a good one? Saturday afternoon, in an Ikea, the cashier greeted me with a “Next, next!” then a “Hello, hi!” ”. 

When I politely and kindly reminded him that French was the one and only official language of Quebec, he replied in a curt tone that “it's that kind of chialage which makes there so much Quebec-hating”.

Asking to respect the law, standing up and repeating the obvious, it stirs up hatred.. . of ourselves! 

Do you remember, in 2020, when Le Journal had presented a whole file on the “Bonjour, Hi”a Victoria’s Secret saleswoman said that “some of her colleagues preferred to speak to customers in English, for fear of reprisals”. 

“We are downtown. Often, when we greet customers in French, some take it personal and we get yelled at,” she explained to my colleagues.

At Ikea, on Saturday, I asked to speak to the manager. When I reminded him that even the National Assembly had unanimously adopted a motion inviting merchants to greet their customers with only the word “Bonjour”, he answered me curtly that we were a bilingual province.

And this guy is a French speaker! 

With all due respect to the Swedes, and to do as the Italians do, I will continue to fight for my national language: French!

Let's penalize English!