Waffle House: A great place for politics.
I read a story on Newser today covering a City Councilman in Georgia who lost his cool at a Waffle House. The details of the brawl are unclear, but according to Macon Telegraph at some point during a heated discussion with a chairman of a downtown development authority the Councilman pushed a table full of breakfast foods onto his lap. It made me think: a Waffle House is a great place for heated, political discourse.
Food—especially breakfast foods—can be a great tool when illustrating a point.
For example, this year Bill Maher used a heaping plate of Southern food to illustrate a point about the budget. He displayed huge servings of fried chicken, mashed potatoes and creamed corn, next to a tiny serving of mangled green vegetables, making the three fattening foods represented defense, social security and Medicare/Medicaid—three areas that use tons of funds but that nobody wants to cut—and the tiny vegetables represent NPR, Planned Parenthood, and other programs that cost relatively little. His point—don’t cut back on vegetables when you have so many potatoes.
I also recently saw a similar promo for “The Rachel Maddow Show.” Sitting at a booth in a classic American diner, Maddow employed salt and pepper shakers to describe the U.S.’s complicated relationship with Pakistan and how it relates to the war in Afghanistan. So simple, yet so important.
It’s hard to deny— when it comes to salt and comfort food, Americans want to pay attention.
Congress might be able to make more headway, as well as capture the mind of the public, if they took the cue from Maddow and Maher and moved their debates to Waffle House. What better tool to illustrate the need for marriage equality than a giant fruit plate? Both sides of the pro-choice/pro-life debate could probably make a more visceral point if they used real eggs or maybe veal cutlets. And, of course, everyone could benefit from having waffles on hand to throw when a congressman casts an inconsistant vote.
For another example of food being used to mesmerize an audience into understanding serious topics, view the video below in which world events from WWII to beyond are depicted using croissants, schnitzel, lasagna, hamburgers and much, much more.