In an impromptu press conference this morning in the White House rose garden, President George W. Bush banned the use of pumpkin extract for medical use, citing "moral concerns."
The following is a transcript from this morning's press conference:
When I was a boy. A long, long, long time ago, [laughter] I remember sittin' down at Thanksgiving dinner - a great American tradition - with a plateful of my momma's pumpkin pie.
[rubbing his tummy] Now this pie was so good, people claim they could smell it as far as Fort Worth [laughter].
Researchers are now sayin' that compounds in pumpkins could possibly regenerate pancreatic cells and boost levels of insulin-producing beta cells, giving hope to many with diabetes. I have no idea what I just said.
I appreciate that we are a nation that has a deep desire to advance science and cure diseases, but I cannot ethically support the deliberate destruction of pumpkins. [applause]
It's a life. One of God's glorious creatures. [applause] I believe it may even be a mammal. It is a moral line I cannot cross. Pumpkins are a symbol of America. [applause] A symbol of our freedom. [applause] Freedom to carve Jack-o-lanterns on Halloween. Freedom for the great farmers of this country to enter contests to grow massive pumpkins weighing more than 1500 pounds. [applause]
Pumpkin soup, pumpkin seeds, mashed pumpkin, pumpkin pudding. [continued applause]
The Great Pumpkin! for Pete's sake [heh, heh]. Laura loves that Linus. [laughter]
What about those gourds. Those are pretty funny when you draw a face on them. I got one of those dried out gourds as a gift last Christmas and I keep it on my desk. I talk to it sometimes. I swear it looks just like Henry Winkler. The resemblance is amazing. [heh, heh].
After talking on the phone with world leaders such as Polish Prime Minister Jar-o-slaw Kac-zyn-ski or Italian President Gee-or-gee-o Nap-ol-itano, I like to look over at the gourd, knodding my head with two thumbs up and say, "Aaay!" Just like The Fonz.
Lastly, I'd like to remind you all that pumpkin extract has not been proven to be an effective treatment for diabetes. I think it's important that our researchers and scientists pursue alternative methods on mammals that are not as, uh, cool [heh, heh] as the pumpkin.
Have we tried radishes?
Thank you all for coming. God bless the United States of America. [applause]