An Australian cafe responded to a customer’s complaints by replacing their gingerbread man cookies with a “gender-neutral” offering.
The customer told staff at The Tannery, a West Auckland cafe, that a gingerbread man is “a bit gender exclusive,” 1 News reported on Thursday.
A photo shared to the business’ Facebook page on Tuesday shows the gender-neutral ginger person display.
A little something for everyone 😉 #bestoutwest #thetannerycafe #thetannerynz #relaxalittle
Andre Cettina, The Tannery’s owner, told 1 News’ Seven Sharp that the whole affair “started off a bit tongue-in-cheek.”
“But it’s actually become a focal point and started a bit of a discussion at the counter with a lot of people taking photos,” Cettina said.
“Some people think things might have gone too far one way, so they are having a bit of a chuckle with it,” he added.
But others are more annoyed than amused by The Tannery’s stunt.
“PC gone mad, always been ginger bread man, why change now. It’s a biscuit, not a living creature. I find this all so sad!!!” said one commenter on Facebook.
And at least one Facebook user sees the minor controversy as an opportunity to discuss meaningful issues.
“Not sure why people getting so mad. This is a conversation starter, and these issues won’t be dealt with until we are open to talking about them,” the commenter wrote. “People getting mad about this completely miss the point of what it could achieve. It isn’t ‘PC gone mad’, it’s an opportunity to take a good hard look at yourself and your feelings around a sensitive topic and do some real introspective work on why you feel the way you do.”
“PC gone mad?”
Some argue that proponents of “woke” ideology have at times overreached in their efforts to police speech that doesn’t align with politically correct orthodox.
Such critics of progressivism might point to cases like the “blackface” controversy that recently ensnared Bed Bath & Beyond.
In September, the retail giant announced it would stop selling black jack-o’-lanterns after customers complained the items were racially offensive.
But at least one local woman seemed to think the whole thing had been blown greatly out of proportion.
“They are pumpkins. Black pumpkins, idiots,” the woman said in an interview with a local news outlet. “That’s all there is.”