My roommate works in a warehouse on the west side of Saskatoon and frequently shares anecdotes about work. Upper and middle management are white whereas the guys on the floor are mostly Pakistanis. With the setting laid out, lets proceed. My roommate would often complain about how much he despised the high stress environment at the warehouse, not because of an overbearing management, but because the Pakistani employees simply couldn’t get along with one another. They would gossip, backbite, and constantly undermine each other. Those that are familiar with the cultures of south Asia (India/Pakistan/Bangladesh) will observe that these societies are characterized as low morality and low trust cultures. Small wonder the Pakistanis can’t cooperate with one another in a setting that requires a high degree of trust. Part of the problem lies with their peculiar pattern of communication. South Asians don’t communicate openly and directly, rather, they calibrate their speech to not cause outward offense in order to save face.
In the collectivist cultures of South Asia, Saving face is an important social interaction mechanism aimed at preserving group harmony. I have written about it more extensively here. Requests and demands are obliquely phrased while the appropriate honourifics must be used when addressing others that are of a higher social standing than oneself. So while the white man may treat his south Asian acquaintances equally, those acquaintances may not treat each other the same way and their tribal languages have the functions of hierarchy and status built into them. All of this means that if protocol isn’t observed, causing offense is inevitable; which might disrupt productivity in a work setting. I’m not saying that south Asians aren’t hard working people, quite the contrary as these guys effortlessly complete all their objectives, however foreign values can have a disruptive effect if not dealt with firmly.
- Mandate the exclusive use of English at work: I’m surprised that management never considered this option in the first place. English, and other European languages, are built for the precise and efficient exchange of information, not communicating status. It is a flat language devoid of honourifics that reflects the western values of egalitarianism, equality, and high trust. These values are incompatible with the tribal south Asian values of hierarchy, status, face/honour, and low trust. By enforcing the exclusive use of English at work, management may in time eradicate interpersonal conflict issues amoung their south Asian workforce. Furthermore, the daily use of English for 8 hours a day may (in the long term) make these people more receptive to the western values outlined above. This would hopefully ease their assimilation into mainstream white culture.
- Fight diversity with diversity: Why are there so many south Asians at this warehouse to begin with? We need more diversity; hire more whites! Maintaining a healthy ratio of whites to non whites (where whites should be a healthy majority) would aid immigrants acclimate to White culture, its protocols, and etiquette. They might in time learn to function in a high trust environment.
Diversity is challenging, but the challenge lies in not getting whites to bend over backwards in trying to accommodate a horde of aliens, but rather, getting immigrants to successfully acclimate to the cultural norms and values of their adopted homes. Whites should rise to the challenge of helping immigrants assimilate instead of capitulating to the self righteous prattle of the multicultural left.