If there is one phrase I really hate it's...
..."political correctness gone mad". Makes my blood boil. It is normally used by racists, apologists for racists, and people who like to use terms like coloured and pillow bitters, or who think that gay equality and human rights in general are abhorrent. Prime examples of people who use this phrase are members of the right wing press like Jeremy Clarkson, that fuckwit Gary Bushell from the Sun "newspaper", the ever so tiresome Richard Littlejohn, and most probably the Fox news network. In fact I'm sure that News International have it as both a company trademark and a prerequisite in all editorials, no matter the issue.
That said, this story from the Daily Mail, of all places, actually warrants it's use. Or something similar. Cant be bothered to follow the link? Don't want the Daily Mail on your hard drive?I understand. Let me summarise for you....
Belfast based restaurateur Eddie Fung is planning to open his next Fat Buddha restaurant in Durham next month, having spent a not too shabby £1.3million. He has one in Belfast at the moment and whilst it's not my cup of rice (see what I did there?) it is very popular. So what's the problem eh? Well the ironically named HEAD OF CULTURAL SERVICES, Tracey Ingle has demanded that Mr Fung change the name of his restaurant as she believes it is "provocative" to Buddhists.
In a letter to Mr Fung, Miss Ingle wrote: "To use the name of a major religion's deity in your restaurant brand runs contrary to this city's reputation as a place of equality and respect for others' views and religious beliefs.
"The generic descriptive adjective of "fat" is not in itself a derogatory term when applied generally ...the name implies an Eastern offer [>sic] as it is associated with a religion that grew from Asian countries .It does not, however, offer vegetarian cuisine solely nor does it refer to Buddhist belief systems. The name is provocative."
Mr Fung, 39, (old enough to know better) said: "I cannot believe that this woman should go to so much time and trouble to take issue over an inoffensive name like Fat Buddha.
"No Buddhist is going to be offended by this. The fat Buddha is a symbol of health and happiness." [trumpet fan fare] "It is political correctness gone mad."
And so it is.
For fuck sake even the Buddhist Society said: "Buddhists regard the fat Buddha as lucky. To suggest this is offensive is to misunderstand the faith."
And anyway do you really think we were likely to have rivers of blood as the Buddhists go on a rampage? I don't think so.
I'm pleased that Durham City Council has a head of cultural services. Honest I am. It is genuinely an important position but idiotic decisions like this make a mockery of the position and give the Daily Mail something to get upset about. And leave people with no choice but to say "It's political correctness gone mad!" If Mr Fung had named his restaurant "Chinky Charlie's" or something equally as offensive well then Ms Ingle would have a cast iron complaint. But he didn't, and she doesn't.
Two good stories form the Daily Mail? I need a lie down....