English Spoken Here, O.K.?

A California crusade tries to stamp out bilingualism

Lily Lee Chen sputters when she recalls a sign at a local gas station, WILL THE LAST AMERICAN TO LEAVE MONTEREY PARK PLEASE BRING THE FLAG? For Chen, the placard is testimony to a conflict that threatens to split Monterey Park, a city of about 59,000 next to Los Angeles, along ethnic lines. During the past 25 years, the Asian population has grown from 5% to 40%, and the increasingly prosperous city has been tagged the Asian Beverly Hills. But changes have bred resentment. A cultural cross fire over language -- English vs. Chinese -- has erupted in Monterey Park, with...

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