When Brooklyn Assemblyman Felix Ortiz (pictured left) proposed banning salt from all New York restaurants a few days ago—with a $1,000 penalty for violators—it raised eyebrows around the world, and drew an irate response from local chefs and food folk throughout the city. (“Anybody who wants to taste food with no salt, go to a hospital and taste that,” cheflebrity Tom Colicchio told the Daily News.) Mayor Bloomberg even called it “ridiculous.” Perhaps stung by all the criticism, Ortiz has now released a statement clarifying what he meant. In it, he says he only wants to ban unnecessary levels of salt—not salt that is, as he says, “a functional component of the recipe.” That seems like something that’s a bit hard to prove. Who’s to say what level of salt is functional or not? Maybe the Atlantic‘s Max Fisher is correct when he says that Ortiz is just trying to start some debate on the subject, not actually, y’know, ban salt from our food.