It Is Absolutely Fine To Be Fat

Actual SizeRecently, The Guardian gifted the world with a piece-of-trash article using the International pastime of bashing fat people who don’t hate themselves. The article, “It’s not fine to be fat. Celebrating obesity is irresponsible,” by “journalist” Lizzie Cernik, demonstrates a complete misunderstanding of the concepts of body positivity and size acceptance and puts forth a blatant double standard based on sizeism, healthism, and ableism.

Let’s break this drivel down.

“Body positivity began as a powerful antidote to the media’s obsession with skeletal models and beachball-breasted glamour girls…But as we move away from the skinny goals of the mid-2000s and embrace different shapes and sizes, one group of campaigners has taken things a step too far. Fronted by plus-sized models and social media influencers, the fat acceptance movement aims to normalize obesity, letting everyone know that it’s fine to be fat.”

Not even close there, Lizzie. Fat acceptance came first. Groups like the Fat Underground started clawing for fat people’s rights to life, liberty, the pursuit of happiness in the 1960s. “Body positivity” is the newcomer, a watered-down version of fat acceptance. BoPo not only inherited the issues of fat acceptance — including a lack of marginalized voices including People of Color and disabled people/people with disabilities — but then created more issues by putting limits on who is “allowed” to love their body and who “deserves” to be treated with basic human respect.

Next, we have the tired healthism-as-as-veil-for-fatphobia argument: “While nobody should ever be bullied for their weight or food choices, it’s important to make a distinction between health awareness and cruelty.

The problem with this is that “health” is a difficult concept to nail down, especially since research tends to follow the biases (and profitability) of the time. The distinction we need to make between health awareness and cruelty revolves around the perceived risks doctors are willing to make regarding fat bodies. These include the belief that thin people should be given evidence-based interventions for health issues and fat people should risk their digestive health, quality of life, and lives to have a dangerous (and highly profitable) stomach amputation surgeries.

For a breakdown of the rest of the issues in the article, click here!

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6 thoughts on “It Is Absolutely Fine To Be Fat

  1. “Body positivity began as a powerful antidote to the media’s obsession with skeletal models and beachball-breasted glamour girls…But as we move away from the skinny goals of the mid-2000s and embrace different shapes and sizes, one group of campaigners has taken things a step too far. Fronted by plus-sized models and social media influencers, the fat acceptance movement aims to normalize obesity, letting everyone know that it’s fine to be fat.”

    If I’d been reading this opinion piece “raw” instead of with your delightful commentary, Ragen, I’d have stopped right there. This is just plain factually wrong, and even though you’ve already said it, it can’t be said enough: the fat acceptance movement (at least in the US) was founded in the 60’s, by fat people who staged ‘Fat-In’ protests. NAAFA started in 1969 in New York City. I found that in the first hit I got in a google search that took .4 seconds.

    I think this article is relevant:

    http://www.houstonpress.com/arts/no-it-s-not-your-opinion-you-re-just-wrong-updated-7611752

    “While nobody should ever be bullied for their weight or food choices, it’s important to make a distinction between health awareness and cruelty.”

    The “difference” between cruelty and targeting fat people for a paternalistic size-based brand of “health” awareness is the “difference” between a diet and a lifestyle change (explaining the joke: that means it’s semantic obfuscation and there IS no difference). Health and weight are not the same thing, weight and food choices are not the same thing, and evidence-based health interventions (including those involving food choices) need never mention weight. Therefore, if you bring up someone’s weight as a negative in relation to their health, you ARE doing it to use the stigma and misinformation against large bodies to shame them and make them pliable and submissive – there’s no other reason TO do it. Actually, on second thought, it’s true that’s not “bullying.” It’s verbal and psychological abuse.

    1. Oh, and…

      “skeletal models and beachball-breasted glamour girls”

      Or as the rest of us call them, “human beings with feelings.” Seriously, what a horrible thing to say about someone.

  2. Yeah, this woman seems to want to be angry at everyone and is determined to make sure we all stay in line. Hers

  3. I am really aghast that somebody might actually insist that people do not have the right to exist in their bodies and live a happy life. Like, why? Could she really give me only one, a single good reason? I bet not. Our fat kills children, you know. And, oh, she needs to pay for our dubious costs, right, too. Honestly, reading her words, I think the latter would be worse than the previous for her.

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