Pineapple-pizza-gate: President backtracks "I can't dictate pizza toppings!" Then encourages people to put fish on their pizza
The President of Iceland, Guðni Th. Jóhannesson, has responded to the controversy over his "I would ban pineapple-pizza if I had the power to set laws" with a second public announcement. And like all great leaders who are unafraid of controversy, his latest salvo was released on social media.
In a post on the Facebook page of the office of the President Guðni Th. delivered what he calls "A statement on the pizza-controversy :)"
The post, which is written in both Icelandic and English, reflecting the fact that this mini-controversy has caught the attention of the outside world, explains that Guðni does not have the power to dictate people's pizza toppings. "Presidents should not have unlimited power," Guðni adds. Instead he encourages people to put fish on their pizza!
"I like pineapples, just not on pizza. I do not have the power to make laws which forbid people to put pineapples on their pizza. I am glad that I do not hold such power. Presidents should not have unlimited power. I would not want to hold this position if I could pass laws forbidding that which I don´t like. I would not want to live in such a country."
An immensely popular president
Guðni is immensely popular in Iceland. A former History Professor at the University of Iceland, he has cultivated an extremely laid-back style while in office. He also turned down a 20% pay hike, and then gives 10% of his pre-tax salary to charity. Shortly after assuming office he also became the first President of any country to march in a Gay Pride parade.
This style of the President is reflected in his sky-high approval ratings: Only 3.8% of voters are unhappy about the President's term in office!
But is fish an acceeptable pizza-topping?
He then moves on to suggest people put seafood on their pizza. While that does not sound all that controversial (shellfish is considered a legitimate pizza topping), Guðni uses the word "fiskmeti" in the Icelandic version of his post, which translates as fish-products, rather than seafood.
"For pizzas, I recommend seafood."
The controversy, which certainly deserves its own "-gate" suffix, making it "pineapple-pizza-gate", has generated significant international interest, vaulting to the top 10 trending stories on Reddit and finding its way onto online news sites around the world. Some commentators in Iceland have mused that if all political controversies were this much fun the world would be a much better place.
People are more divided on the question whether the world would be a better place if Guðni actually did have the power and resolve to ban pineapple as a pizza topping!
"I like pineapples, just not on pizza. I do not have the power to make laws which forbid people to put pineapples on their pizza. I am glad that I do not hold such power. Presidents should not have unlimited power. I would not want to hold this position if I could pass laws forbidding that which I don´t like. I would not want to live in such a country.
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