Pizzagate has hit Iceland.
Last week, when he was answering questions at a local high school, Iceland President Guðni Th. Jóhannesson nonchalantly expressed his distaste for pineapple pizza.
Then he crossed what turned out to be a bridge too far: He said he would enact a law that would ban pineapple on pizza, according to a local news outlet.
That’s when the fish hit the fan and a new Twitter hashtag was born: #pineappleonpizza.
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The folks at DiGiorno didn’t take too kindly to the dig, either.
CBC tracked down the Canadian inventor of the Hawaiian pizza, Sam Panopoulos, 83, of London, Ontario, to get his take on Pizzagate.
(Iceland. Canada. Hawaii. Are we confused yet?)
Pizza hadn’t yet come to Canada in the late 1950s and ’60s when Panopoulos started serving it in his restaurant, he said.
“Along the way, we threw some pineapples on it and nobody liked it at first. But after that, they went crazy about it. Because those days nobody was mixing sweets and sours and all that,” he told CBC.
Panopoulos took a little dig at the Icelandic leader, who is 47.
“When I was working on the pineapple pizza — he wasn’t even born. It’s so way back. There was no patent. Nobody owned it. Nobody owned the name or anything like this — how can it be illegal?
“He can have whatever he wants — I don’t care. Listen, I don’t get nothing out of it. He can do whatever he wants as far as I’m concerned.”
Some on social media agreed with Iceland’s president, arguing that pineapple’s place is in fruity tropical drinks, not on top of pizzas.
The Guardian pointed out the president’s pre-Pizzagate popularity — as high as 97 percent among his fellow countrymen — and his popular, informal ways. People know he likes pizza because he’s been seen picking up takeout pizza on his way home from the office.
But the pineapple debate got so heated near and far that the president on Tuesday clarified his pineapple pondering.
He posted “A Statement on the Pizza Controversy” in both English and Icelandic on Facebook.
He said he liked pineapple, just not on his pizza. And, he can’t stop people from eating it that way.
“I do not have the power to make laws which forbid people to put pineapples on their pizza,” he wrote. “I am glad I do not hold such power.”
Presidents should “not have unlimited power,” he continued. “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.”
And just for the record?
“For pizzas, I recommend seafood,” he said.
Don’t tell the pepperoni folks.