Freedom Fries - What were they thinking?

posted 3/12/2003

So, the biggest, smelliest, meanest government in the world, our government - that of the United States - has "officially" renamed French Fries (or 'chips' to the Europeans) "Freedom Fries" because French politicians are being a bunch of unreasonable bastards about Iraq. French toast, too, has become extinct on capitol hill, replaced by "Freedom Toast".
It's not an original idea. Don't give them any credit for creativity - during WWI and WWII, sauerkraut was, at least occasionally, referred to as "Victory Cabbage". Bratwurst became "hot dogs". There were probably others that I'm not aware of. But, and this is the important distinction to make: We were at war with Germany.
Now, I don't hate the French nearly as much as they hate me, and I certainly don't hate everything remotely French, just because it's, well, French. I love the French language, at least when spoken by Quebecois. But I think renaming french fries - an American food, after all - is a bit silly when we're not at war with them. What's there to be gained? What are we trying to prove, that we aren't happy with the French? I think that's sort of the point of their grandstanding at the U.N.
The problem is that Iraq, who is the enemy, at least this week, exports very little of it's culture. I understand they make wine there, though it's not much exported, and frankly I'm not sure I'd want to eat anything from a country which claims to have lost or otherwise misplaced several hundred tonnes of biological and chemical warfare agents... "Hey it's biological, it'll work as a fertiliser, right?"
Why not rename, I dunno, dates as "victory fruit", or "Democracy Dates" to keep the alliteration going. I mean, they're about as Iraqi as french fries are French. At least fruit is good for you, unlike thin pieces of potatos fried in grease. What next, Liberty Lard?
On the other hand, I'm all for attacking France. Sure, why not? They don't exactly have the world's finest fighting force, though their jets and rifles are rather nice. Anyone else remember when they launched their new aircraft carrier and the deck was too short? That amused me for a week or so...Besides, since they won't be able to turn for help to that one big country that got them out of both world wars - the U.S. - the survivors may even learn a lesson or two about the importance of the U.S.A. from a good bombing.
I can't imagine how France is going to retaliate. Rename 'cafe americano' to 'cafe dictatorio', perhaps? Or call 'American Football' something unpleasant? When our largest cultural exports are violent movies and obscene "music", what can they really do to us? Oh, wait, Kraft American Singles (you know, the cheese slices) could become "Kraft Capitalist Cheese Singles". What a loss...
It seems we're losing sight of what's important. France, in the grand scheme of things, isn't that important. North Korea, yes, will continue to be important until we bomb them back into the dark ages. Iraq is only important because our president (I didn't vote for him!) has a family feud with their president. Renaming food in the congessional cafeteria in some sort of spat with a one-time ally is just ridiculous...
Besides, if we REALLY wanted to make a point, we'd rename champagne as "victory grape juice". That'd piss 'em off to no end...


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