Speaking out for Chinese, Asians

Dear Editor,

Re: Concerned about Samoa’s State

When I read the article “Concerned about Samoa’s State”, I feel very sad. In fact, most Chinese doing business in Samoa can’t speak English. Facing the blame, they can’t defend themselves though they feel a sense of grievance. 

They even don’t know there is so much blame on them in the newspaper. 

What they can do is just to be silent.  However, their silence only leads to more and more blame and rumours.

The latest rumour is the usage of dog and cat meat in an Asian restaurant which is mentioned in Ms. Moe Lei Sam’s article. 

Many Samoans who read this unconfirmed report from Facebook feel it is disgusting. As a result, hatred towards Chinese businessmen has been spreading in the society. The Ministry of Health carried out an investigation two months ago. They discovered this is not true at all.  It is just a rumour. 

I think Ms. Moe Lei Sam should read this report:  “Cat and Dog Meat In restaurant Denied” in Newsline (June 22). Because of this rumour, all the Chinese are blamed. It is unfair.

As for a Chinese shop owner who said “business is going well because Samoans eat everything”, I want to say these words are from the opinion section of a letter to the editor published in the Samoa Observer. 

Any one can say anything in this edition regardless of what they say is true or not. This is another unconfirmed quote. If it is true, please tell us the name of the Chinese shop owner. We can scold him. But we can’t direct our anger at all other innocent Chinese who didn’t say that and reject that at heart. It is unfair.

I agree that the government should protect the local businessmen and needs to do more. In fact, the government has taken many measures to restrict Chinese businesses. For example, if a Chinese businessman hires a Chinese worker, he has to hire at least three Samoan workers under the law. Chinese supermarkets are usually blamed for hiring too many Chinese. In fact, most Samoans don’t realize that.

What I disagree with is to help local businessmen by inciting racial hatred and attaching labels onto Chinese businessmen. It can’t solve any problems but only leads to tragedies. There have been many lessons.

A hundred years ago, when Ms. Moe Lei Sam’s father came to Samoa from China, he was lucky because Samoans accepted him and no one tried to incite hatred towards him. 

Today, many Chinese businessmen come to Samoa and try to assimilate into Samoa. They become a member of the Samoan extended family. Their sons or daughters will become another Ms. Moe Lei Sam. I hope they will still be lucky.

Sam Sam

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