Skip to comments.You can't name your restaurant Fat Buddha because it offends Buddhists says council
Posted on 07/22/2007 10:16:56 AM PDT by Daffynition
In China he is a symbol of health and happiness. But tell that to the politically correct council officer who objected to a restaurant being called Fat Buddha...because it might offend Buddhists
A Buddhist businessman who wants to call his Chinese restaurant Fat Buddha has angered council chiefs - who claim the name will upset Buddhists.
Eddie Fung's £1.3million restaurant will open in Durham next month, creating 60 jobs.
But the restaurateur was astonished when Tracey Ingle, the city council's head of cultural services, demanded he change the name because it was 'provocative'.
Mr Fung, 39, 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. It is political correctness gone mad."
And a spokesman for the Buddhist Society said: "Buddhists regard the fat Buddha as lucky. To suggest this is offensive is to misunderstand the faith.
"Buddhists don't take offence at anything because to do so doesn't follow Buddhist teachings."
Mr Fung said that his company, Utopian Leisure, had received no complaints about the use of the name Fat Buddha at his first restaurant, which opened in Belfast earlier this year.
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."
Durham City Council defended her position, saying: "The department felt the name was inappropriate in a city founded on faith. We don't want to offend anyone because of the different faiths that come to the city. The council operates a strict non-discriminatory equal-opportunities and diversity policy across the board."
Miss Ingle added: "I stand by the letter, which asked the restaurant owners to rename the place. That is where we are now.
"We have taken every reasonable step and I have contacted the company director and set out my concerns.
"The restaurant is in a very prominent position and it does have an impact on the reputation of the city. I have expressed a view as head of cultural services in dealing with the culture of the city."
Buddhism was founded 2,500 years ago in India by Siddhartha Gautama, who later became known as the Buddha.
There are 350million Buddhists worldwide, including more than 150,000 in Britain.
A suggestion to the owner - Place Sign “Named ‘Moron Liberal’ so as Not to Offend any Sitting Democrat”
The place will be packed!
“If you meet the Buddha on the road, kill him.”
Ms. Ingle is the personification of the old truism...
The only thing necessary for an unjust society to exist is an endless supply of unjust administrators.
Is there an email address where we can share our view of her neurotic-level sensitivity?
Note her focus on vegetarianism ~ that's BS. Plenty of Buddhists in good standing eat meat ~
This old gal is simply trying to impose her incorrect religious beliefs on other people.
If it were possible I'd recommend that fine old English custom of public burning of offensive people, but that can't be done anymore so I won't recommend it. But it's something to think about.
I was getting really steamed until I realized that it was an Onion article...
Just name it FAT CATHOLIC, they’ll be fine with that.
Buddha is fat!!!Would they have been offended if he named it anorexic Buddha.
The man is a Buddhist. It will not offend Buddhists.
It WILL offend food nazis who proclaim that 50% of Europe and soon-to-be 50% of the US are “obese”.
He would’ve named it Happy Buddah but the homosexual activists thought that it slurred gays.
The Dalai Lama even eats veal.
How about "Prosperous Stereotype from 18th Century England Buddha"?
Is Miss Ingle going to pay for the new sign, menu’s ect for a name change?
MMMM Veal. Hard to find around here.
Buddhist owner can’t name his own resteraunt “Fat Buddah” due to electorate deeming the name -offensive to buddishts-.
What next? “Everything a Dollar” offends atheists for proclaiming the existance of everything?
“Burger King” is offensive to Henry IIIV supporters...
Piggly Wiggly offends pig farmers...
Happy China offends refugees from communism?
And here I thought it would offend the obese.
Or maybe “Big-Boned Buddha”???
Let me see if I can encapsulate the thought process coming from Tracey Ingle, head of the city council of Durham, England's cultural services, I imagine it's something like this . . .
I find your lack of offense at the offensive portrayal of an obese Buddha troublesome. Furthermore, would we allow you to depict the Buddha in such a manner, all references to his weight should be in phrases less provocative and more acceptable to our more sensitive modern mores, "Weight Challenged Buddha" or "Pleasantly Plump Buddha" or "Big Boned Buddha" or "I'm Not Fat I'm Just Hefty Buddha" would have all been acceptable.
However I've been informed by Ivor Biggerse the director for the city of Durham's health services that due to the pernicious influence of too many video games and American TV programmes on our children that we are facing an epidemic of obesity in our area, and as such, any positive depictions of 'jolly' fat people would be counterproductive towards the aim of reducing our growing obesity problem. Surely one of the more austere and ascetic depictions of the Buddha would be more appropriate given current health goals.
Actually I need to rethink that last suggestion as I've been informed by Ima Buttinsky from our city's mental health services that there are also many anorexic people in our city, so any depiction of an ascetic Buddha shouldn't be too thin as some of the afflicted might see these depictions and use them for 'thinspiration'.
Also, I'm afraid that the cultural sensitivities of our Islamic neighbours might come into play with the depiction of a figure of worship. As some within their faith believe in the banning of all images of not only Allah, Mohammed, and other lesser prophets, but of any human whatsoever, it would be best if your restaurant has no images within, or uses any images in their advertising of the Buddha.
Actually, given that all variations and body types of the Buddha really can't satisfy all the differing sensitivities in our fine city, it would be best for everyone if you don't open up your restaurant at all. I realise you are poised to employ 60 people in your restaurant, but what's the potential employment of five dozen souls when weighed against the sensitivities of the entire community? Those jobs simply aren't worth the risk of offending one group or another.
I might have ruled differently had the owner of the restaurant not suggested such a provocative name in the first place, but given that initial provocation, my only recourse is to do what I can to prevent this business for operating for the sake of communal cohesion and peace and to preserve out community's reputation for tolerance, understanding, and reason.
Maybe one day when all prejudices, health problems, and religious issues are resolved in a manner that satisfies all parties, we could sit back and laugh or ignore things like a restaurant named "Fat Buddha", but the age we live in is not a time of laughter, and we musn't contribute to the problem of global insensitivity that plagues all aspects of life. I reject the name of your restaurant so that I may be part of the solution, not the problem, I hope everyone else will see the careful and considered reasoning that went into this decision.
How ‘bout “Hindu Burger”?
- you want some fries with your dead relative?
So change the name to “Skinny Buddah” and let them argue that one for a while.
That's true. If I were going to be offended it would be by politically correct idiot liberals like Miss Ingle. Deep neurosis like hers is a major cause of suffering in the world.
Not to capitulate in any way to her emotional disorder; I would still like to offer an alternative name for the restaurant.
The Fat Bureaucrat.
That might be the ego raising it's ugly head...part of their conditioned consciousness ... It seems to be part of their path to be lost in the world, to be lost in the mind ..."Seek but do not find" ... Transcending the world ...letting go of self-seeking ...a universal path.
Here's a good thread if you missed it... Idiot Compassion
Thank you for the link, I left a not so great comment on the thread when it was posted.
I'd come back and make an even bigger mess of it.
Could we name it “Buff Buddha?”
If I’m offending people they can chose not to eat here.
The name stays.
Perhaps the council should disolve because their stupidity offends me?
See post #20 with a link to Ms. Ingles ... let her know what you think ...like it will do any good.
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