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Freedom Fries

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333352.  Fri May 09, 2008 10:44 am Reply with quote

Q: What’s the best way to stop Americans eating French Fries?

A: The best way to stop Americans eating French Fries is to change their name to ‘Freedom Fries’.


On 11th March 2003 the catering facilities in the House of Representatives were instructed by Rep Robert Ney, Chairman of the Committee on House Administration, to re-name French Fries as Freedom Fries, and French Toast as Freedom Toast. The initiative was retaliation for France’s opposition to the invasion of Iraq (the French Embassy refrained from comment, other than noting that French Fries are Belgian). Precedents for this approach included the renaming of sauerkraut as "liberty cabbage" and hamburgers as "liberty sandwiches" and frankfurters as “hot dogs” during the First World War. Battenberg cake was boycotted in the UK during the First World War.

The gesture was very influential and followed by companies and schools all over the US - products perceived to be French or German were widely boycotted for many months. Some French restaurants were said to have been driven to the verge of bankruptcy. French’s Mustard was boycotted even though it’s owned by a British company and named after an American named Robert French. It isn’t true, though, that they issued a press release to say that “The only thing we have in common (with France) is that we are both yellow” – this was an internet joke.

The campaign to boycott French goods found a willing cheerleader in Fox Television, an aggressively populist network with a 24-hour news channel. As one guest on Bill O’Reilly’s prime-time show said: "You know, we have bailed out France now three times in this century, in the First World War, in the Second World War, and then in the cold war - and so France really does owe us a debt of gratitude… that means not buying French perfume, not buying French champagne and products that will enrich the French people." When President Bush visited France for the G8 summit, he tried not to spend a night on French soil, but in the end had to compromise for 24 hours. "Let's hope," said a Fox News anchorman, "that he doesn't drink Evian." Other media agreed: "If we'd sprinkled some A-bombs back in the Second World War," said the tabloid Weekly World News, "Germany wouldn't be a thorn in America's side today."

The Americans don’t have a monopoly on this kind of thing; since the Danish cartoon outcry Danish pastries in Iran have been known as “Roses of the Prophet Mohammed”.

333363.  Fri May 09, 2008 11:08 am Reply with quote

And did we use the Dachshunds stuff during D?

333384.  Fri May 09, 2008 12:30 pm Reply with quote

Yes - but you're right, it's relevant.

333550.  Sat May 10, 2008 4:24 am Reply with quote

Come to that, did we ever use the "Dutch" and "French" and "Welsh" (all meaning foreign) stuff that we discussed a couple of years ago?

333566.  Sat May 10, 2008 5:24 am Reply with quote

No, don't think so.

380210.  Wed Jul 16, 2008 4:25 am Reply with quote

In 1998, New Zealand was a bit peeved at French nuclear testing in the pacific, so renamed "French Bread" "kiwi bread."

In WWII, German measles were renamed "liberty measles" in the US - newspapers continued to use the name for decades.

During World War I, the city of Syracuse, New York outlawed the playing of Pinochle due to its German roots.

sourced wiki

All facts originally from Mental Floss

380301.  Wed Jul 16, 2008 7:57 am Reply with quote

Sauerkraut was renamed 'Liberty cabbage' during WW2 because of the German associations.

647978.  Sat Dec 19, 2009 10:22 pm Reply with quote

Here you can see the essential difference between Yanks and Europeans.

Yanks change the name of something (whether it's relevant or not) whereas Europeans smash McDonald's windows.


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