Since the death of George Floyd, protests and riots have popped up in cities all across the United States.
In the midst of the chaos, rioters have begun tearing down historical statues and petitioning to change the names of towns believed to represent racism.
A Columbus, Ohio, resident named Tyler Woodbridge started a petition in the area to have the city’s name changed to “Flavortown” in honor of a native — celebrity chef Guy Fieri.
“Even though it’s my favorite city, I was always a bit ashamed of the name,” the 32-year-old Woodbridge told CNN.
Woodbridge, who now lives in Murfreesboro, Tennessee, said the name “Flavortown” was more fitting, considering that it’s Fieri’s well-known catchphrase.
“The new name is twofold. For one, it honors Central Ohio’s proud heritage as a culinary crossroads and one of the nation’s largest test markets for the food industry,” Woodbridge’s Change.org petition reads.
“Secondly, cheflebrity Guy Fieri was born in Columbus, so naming the city in honor of him (he’s such a good dude, really) would be superior to its current nomenclature.”
The name change idea came shortly after Mayor Andrew Ginther vowed that the statue of Christopher Columbus outside City Hall would be torn down.
“For many people in our community, the statue represents patriarchy, oppression and divisiveness. That does not represent our great city, and we will no longer live in the shadow of our ugly past,” Ginther told WTTE-TV.
“Now is the right time to replace this statue with artwork that demonstrates our enduring fight to end racism and celebrate the themes of diversity and inclusion.”
After Budweiser caught wind of the petition, it began promoting the petition and offering free seltzer to everybody in the area if the campaign results in a name change.
“Bud Light Seltzer for all of Flavortown if this happens,” the company tweeted with a link to a news story about the petition.
Bud Light Seltzer for all of Flavortown if this happens https://t.co/hUMViimR3n
— Bud Light (@budlight) June 18, 2020
Columbus residents aren’t alone in their mission to rename their city.
A petition with more than 4,000 signatures was started a few weeks ago to change the name of Lynchburg, Virginia, because of its “violent, racist, and horrifying connotations.”
However, the town’s name wasn’t derived from racist values; it was named after John Lynch, who strongly advocated for the freedom of slaves.
As for the Columbus petition, Guy Fieri has not yet responded.
Truth and Accuracy
We are committed to truth and accuracy in all of our journalism. Read our editorial standards.