Thursday, January 18, 2007

Beijing Set “Queuing Day”

The Beijing goverment tries to educate citizens to wait in line in public places

To establish the norm of queuing in public places, the Beijing government announced on Thursday that the 11th day of every month will be the official “queuing day.”

The government has called on celebrities to appeal to the public to wait in line, and will dispatch volunteers to crowded public places to “direct” people get in line. The initiative is one of a serious by the government to educate citizens of good public behavior, so that they can behave better during the Olympic Games in 2008. But many people doubt such one-day-a-month campaign would really work.

Chinese people are infamous for some bad public behaviors, including smoking in the public, spitting and littering in the streets, and of course, not forming a line while getting on buses, buying tickets from windows, or depositing checks in a bank.

Things have improved a lot in recent decades, especially in well-developed regions. In big cities like Beijing, at least, people have got used to standing behind the waiting line in a bank. But they still push each other, harshly and aggressively, when trying to get on crowded buses or subway trains, so much so that many times onborad passengers have to force their way against the upcoming crowds in order to get off.

----by Josie Liu

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