Scalia: “Deep Dish Pizza” Not “Pizza”

Ever the originalist, Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia decided to make a definitive ruling on the deep dish v. thin crust debate that threatens to tear the nation apart. He made to make his pronouncement deep in enemy territory, while speaking to students at the Chicago-Kent School of Law. Having previously hinted a strong preference for New York-style pizza, the justice claimed that “real” pizza is Neapolitan, which might also disqualify his favorite style.

Scalia first commented on the subject in a January 2011 interview with California Lawyer. Having grown up near New York, he was asked, as “a child of Sicilian immigrants, how do you think New York City pizza rates?”

I think it is infinitely better than Washington pizza, and infinitely better than Chicago pizza. You know these deep-dish pizzas—it’s not pizza. It’s very good, but … call it tomato pie or something. … I’m a traditionalist, what can I tell you?

Scalia had some familiarity with the Chicago-school of pizzaology, having taught at the University of Chicago Law School from 1977 to 1982 before he felt it turned liberal.

This week, while in town to attend a conference on judicial takings, Scalia re-addressed the issue:

“I do indeed like so-called ‘deep dish pizza.’ It’s very tasty,” the high court’s most outspoken conservative said after a moment’s hesitation. “But it should not be called ‘pizza.’ It should be called ‘a tomato pie.’ Real pizza is Neapolitan. [from Naples, Italy] It is thin. It is chewy and crispy, OK?”

While we respect Scalia’s traditionalism, we would like to make the following point: Justice Scalia, I knew Neapolitan pizza, Neapolitan pizza was a friend of mine. Justice, New York-style pizza is no Neapolitan pizza. If we’re being true, Clarence Thomasonian originalists, I would take issue with your inconsistent rulings.

(photo: http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Antonin_Scalia_2010.jpg)

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  • Being a native-born Southerner, I am deeply offended by the suggestion that a deep dish pizza should be called a “tomato pie.” That’s not a tomato pie. THIS is a tomato pie.