Wednesday, February 10, 2010

In response to Momgrind - in which one blogger over-reacts to the shocking spectacle of a fatty eating ice-cream...

Dear Vered,

Think about this:

You don’t know this girl. You have no idea what may have caused her to become fat. It could be any number of reasons from emotional problems, to physical problems, to side-effects of medication, to yo-yo dieting. You don’t know anything about her, and yet you assume because you’ve witnessed her eating ONE ice cream that she’s fat because she’s stuffing her face with junk food 24/7.

Seeing one fat person having the balls to eat a foodstuff other than salad or raw vegetables in public does not provide proof that fat acceptance is flawed. Fat acceptance can actually help people recover from life-long struggles with eating disorders and prejudice and to lead them to live happier, healthier lives.

And it’s exactly the response that you’ve had to seeing one fat person eat just one ice-cream that makes it so vital to us to have the fat acceptance movement, to have allies against the prejudice that we experience every day. The fat acceptance movement gives us the support we need to break from the starve-binge cycle we’re trapped in, to get out into the world and live our lives, to take up healthy pursuits involving exercise (even when people are falling over themselves to shout “run fatty run” when you’re trying to enjoy a morning jog). It’s what makes us realise that we don’t have to eat everything in the fridge because tomorrow is a ‘no food day’.

And it’s this kind of prejudice which makes people equate thin with healthy. Which encourages the thin and averaged size to believe that important messages about healthy balanced diets and exercise don’t apply to them because they don’t need to lose weight. When a thin person sits on their arse all day eating cake then that’s just fine by society’s standards but in reality poor diet (lack of variety, lack of nutrients) and lack of exercise will cause you health problems whatever your size, just as a good diet (lots of variety, listening to what your body wants, plenty of nutrients) and increased exercise (even a small amount of gentle exercise will improve your health) will keep you healthy no whether you’re 7 stone or 17.

Fat people are not the enemy. Ice cream is also not the enemy – you shouldn’t live on it, but you shouldn’t live on peas either. Making snap judgments on other people without even speaking to them is a problem, but it’s not just your problem, it’s society’s problem. And quite contrary to popular belief, it’s not going to make any of us lose weight. If telling people they’re fat (as if they haven’t noticed) made people magically thin, trust me you’d have not one fat person in western society.


  1. I commented there as well, though I am starting to wonder if she's genuinely interested in hearing what people really think if it doesn't jibe with her view.

    Her "keep 'em coming" posts in response to comments and the "hire me to blog" line on her page make me wonder if she isn't just trolling for hits on her blog in order to turn her writing into a job by picking on fat people as an easy, headline-ready target.

  2. Yeah I know what you mean... Saying controversial things is one way to improve you're readership. Being openly called a bigot (with good reason) probably not so good for her, but fair play for her publishing the comments, she does moderate so she could have chosen not to. But the peanut butter cookie recipe does look yummy!

  3. Hmmm, on reading her reply it is clear that this woman hasn't actually bothered to read what we've said though. I never said being overweight doesn't cause health problems (even if it's true) but she seems to think I did... *Sigh*

  4. Anonymous12:07 am

    It also doesn't help that The "Daily Mail" et al have long since convinced people of the non-existant concept "Political Correctness Gone Mad" -which has -by stealth -led to open season on any supposedly "outsider" group being fair game for ridicule.

    Keep up the fight!
    Phil tc tc tc


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