A Change.org petition is going viral for demanding that Jeff Bezos buy, and eat the Mona Lisa.
No, it’s not an edible recreation of the masterpiece that we’re referring to either. We’re talking about the actual over 500 year old oil work that, for the time being, is safely unsnackable in the Musee de Lourve.
Okay, what is going on.
Kane Powell started a petition over a year ago titled: “We want Jeff to buy and eat the Mona Lisa.”
However, the petition only recently started gaining massive traction. At the time of this article’s writing, the Change.org petition has 13.289 signatures.
The idea (which is a joke, as per the New York Times) came to Powell while at an Applebee’s amongst his fiancée and two friends before the pandemic. The idea can partly be blamed on the relatively cheap drink menu, from where the ideas started to spill. According to Powell,
“Jeff Bezos was in the news at the time..We were like, ‘what if he bought it and ate it?’ It would be stupid and outlandish.”
“Nobody has eaten the Mona Lisa and we feel Jeff Bezos needs to take a stand and make this happen,” the single-sentence petition states.
A statement on the ludicrous nature of excessive wealth perhaps? A political statement? An urge for Jeff to have a bad stomach? The spiralling thoughts behind the bizarreness of the petition have caused many to try and isolate the exact reasoning behind Powell’s efforts.
According to an article by the New York Times, “Mr. Powell is making a statement about the absurdity of massive amounts of accumulated wealth, as well as the bizarreness of the current internet era.”
“We all know that Bezos has more money than needed,” Mr. Powell said according to the New York Times. “It’d just be amusing to have a person of that kind of power be funny with their money because, let’s be honest, they don’t need it, and I think it would just be entertainment.”
But could he actually buy and eat it?
The Mona Lisa is owned by the French state, so France would need to sell the masterpiece. However, Bezos could definitely afford it. His net worth is roughly $200 billion, which is just under 3 trillion Rand. According to Business Standard, the Mona Lisa was assessed at $100 million, then “the highest known insurance valuation for a painting.” Today, that’s roughly $850 million, which is approximately over 12 billion Rand.
Sophie Grange, the deputy director of communication at the Louvre, where the Mona Lisa is on permanent display, said in an email: “We have seen the petition, but the Musée du Louvre will not comment,” according to Business Standard.
It’s definitely a very strange time to be alive.