Tuesday, May 29, 2007

I H*te F*t People

A friend at work yesterday sent me a link to a website and honestly I'm not sure if I'm feeling fury or just outright shock. There is a woman who has created not only a website but what she calls a national organization (complete with an emblem that can be posted on your website) for the purpose of ending obesity, seemingly by the means of shaming and hating anyone she decides is too fat to be seen in public.

If the words "fat" and "obesity" were replaced by any ethnic group that came through Ellis Island she would be branded a bigot, a racist, a supremist.

I've read what Meme Roth has to say on her site, "Wedding Gown Challenge" and it looks to me that she has jumped on the hatred bandwagon. In our society it is acceptable to hate people who are fat. This is the last refuge of haters who can no longer publicly hate any other group of people.

Never mind that her comments are fueled by bigotry (this is awful sexist hateful stuff that she is writing) because more than that her method of "helping" fat people (not that any one asked for her help) is to attack the very lives and right to pursue happiness of any person she deems to be too fat. A campaign to eradicate an entire group of human beings is akin to any other "cleansing" program that we have seen in some of the darkest parts of human history.

Ms. Roth believes that BMI should be used to determine if a person should be seen in television and film and that no one who is "obese" should receive any awards or recognition for their accomplishments. To determine a person's entire worth according to their physical appearance is obscene.

I do wonder if this is a publicity stunt of some kind because her website is purely filled with press releases. How she has managed to get herself on national television news programs spouting her virulent hate speak only proves that our country is experiencing a nationwide witch hunt fueled by the scare tactics of marketing hucksters selling pharmaceuticals and dietary "food" products.

Another scare tactic that Ms. Roth uses is to provide a long list of diseases and complications that she claims obese people are likely to suffer from or make worse and I quote from her site: ..."breast cancer, gallstones, type 2 diabetes, heart disease, colon cancer, dementia, infertility—it goes on and on. Not to mention sleep apnea, snoring and psoriasis." Excuse me?!

Ms. Roth's site is not based on science. Read Sandy Szwarc's brilliant and well-researched site, Junk Food Science, for truth about weight and health matters. Ms. Roth's site is based on bigotry and has no basis on health facts.

I have read on some other blogs that people are outraged and are suggesting some kind of protest. It is my opinion that the more noise we make about Ms. Roth, the more free publicity she receives. I believe that she should be ignored just as I ignore David Duke and eventually she will fade away.


*Rae* said...

I will say sorry now for any bad words I say..I am so damn tired of people who have no idea what it is like to be overweight opening their mouths like their shit don't stink..God forbig anyone say something about someone because of their race or religion and the whole world is on your back but its ok for someone to talk shit about you because you are overweight gimmme a damn break..And as for all the crap that was listed as health issues I know some skinny people who have those problems who have never been overweight a day in their lives. I honestly don't think who the hell they think they are helping by spewing all this bull shit...They are always bashing fat people and saying they shouldn't be in tv or in movies but yea lets go ahead and have all these women who are skin and bones on their tv shows..No matter how hard we try size acceptance is never going to happen with people like this around and its absolutely disgusting if you ask me.

Corinna Makris said...

Dear r,

Don't despair. Every day I see progress in the size acceptance movement. We must be diligent and stay positive. This woman wants you to hate yourself. Don't let her win.

Anonymous said...

Corinna, While I share your disgust, I propose a very different tactic. By giving her attention, the size acceptance community simply gives her exactly what she wants: attention. You are validating her and letting her define the terms of the debate. She has no medical credentials and a one-person PR company or "obesity" organization has no more legitimacy than any other fat bigot. These types of trolls feed on upsetting fat people and by being as outrageous as possible to get attention. By ignoring her, just like trolls, she won't have the reinforcement she craves. I'm not posting anything on my blog, for that reason. Just a thought...

Anonymous said...

I second Corinna and the anonymous poster. Don't give her the attention she craves so badly. Let's turn our backs and ignore her hatred.

I will admit, it's not hard to spew bitter vitriol her way.

Unknown said...

Some people seem to love watching hateful blonde women screech -- just look at Ann Coulter. I researched her a little and her business seems to be PR, so she knows what gets headlines and attention and is willing to play that game to get on TV and make money. I hope that she eventually implodes like Coulter did.

Her statement that women who get married at a thinner weight than they can maintain are committing "fraud" suggests that all men marry women they are interested in only because of how they look. I could see how that might be true if we were all as loveable as Ms. Roth.

Brooke said...

Sounds like she's just pissed because there are some women out there who actually DO WHAT THEY WANT, WHEN THEY WANT TO, like EAT cake when we want a piece, or ENJOY a milkshake on the walk home from work, or EXPRESS their opinions --NOT for the reasons of pissing someone off, but to show that we have our own minds, thoughts, and ideas.

Thank GOODNESS Ms. Roth can't fit in my size 18 jeans, because she wouldn't have what it takes physically OR spiritually, to fill those bad boys out!! I have to THANK her, actually, for helping me RE-COMMIT to being as positive as I can at every opportunity about size acceptance, and the REFUSAL TO BELIEVE that ANYONE who says anything as RIDICULOUS as Ms. Roth has a valid point.

Here Meme, honey, let me make you a sandwich, sounds like you NEED one..

Anonymous said...

I think it's horrible that people try to develop new divisions in this manner, and it does get out of hand, but to openly discriminate doesn't improve human relations.

Yesterday (in a newspaper here) I read that Nicole Ritchie was throwing a party to promote the Tsubi fashion label (an Australian fashion label) in the states, and she stipulated that no female guests should be over 100 pounds in weight, and I thought how sad, and what a reflection of what these malnourished celebrities are (malnourished of body and mind).

While I do think that morbid obesity, the type that prevents people from walking, or getting out of bed, isn't an ideal state for health factors, that doesn't automatically mean that these people are inferior, they have different coping mechanism, but these other people who carp on, are basically picking on those who carry the few extra, who live full lives, and who go about their day as any other person does, and it does make me angry because a person can (depending on their physical and metabolic rate) carry an extra five, ten or fifteen pounds, and then more, after trying and being unable (for any reason, but diets never work anyway because the basal metabolic rate will try to return to its baseline), and this person will be targeted by those who have no real semblance of a life. A person cannot have a life if they are creating internet campaigns targeting people, based on encouraging vilification based on superficial things.

Corinna Makris said...

Dear Anon: I agree with you completely on your assessment of Ms. Roth and I applaud you for standing your ground and doing what feels right. I do, however, feel that it is important to discuss these matters and that the conversation itself does not as you state validate her nor is she defining the terms of the debate. An open discussion is welcome here.

Karen, Jen, Brookie and Anastasia: Thanks for joining the conversation and being positive. In particular I love that actually went so far as to thank her. Way to go babe! Swing those big hips and don't let anybody bring you down.

Anonymous said...

The reason fat people are the last group you can make fun of is because other groups cant change what they are, when i was a child I was boney(well fed just nothing stuck to me), as a teen I was lean and musculer, my mid 20's I was stocky, by 27 I was fat, and in the last 3 years I've been thin again(thanks to busting my ass in the gym and cutting crap out of my diet).
Now lets step back, as a child I was african american, as a teen I was african american, in my 20's I was african american, in my 30's I am still african american.
outside of those with vediligo, being asian, hispanic, arabic or african american are not things that are subject to change(except for those that look light enough to pass as white, camron diaz, marton sheen, vin deisel....etc etc...)
Dont get me wrong I feel no people should be mistreated and however you live your life is nobodies busines but your own but you cant compare a race to a lifestyle choice, and yes it is a lifestyle choice, it was for me I was married and got too comfortable and when I found myself single again I did something about it. I'm not telling anyone here what to do its your life but I am saying that I find it offensive to compare fat hatred to racism, sexism,classism, or even theological hatred, because those are things that you have no choice in.

Anonymous said...

I think various cultures go through some sort of discrimination if they differ from the mainstream, it doesn’t have to be color related.

Believe it or not, there are many people who will never be thin, and while they may alter themselves in the short term, they’ll never be that way for the long term, they’ll have erratic phases, but they won’t be that ‘thin’ type of individual that a gym will enable them to be in the short term if they cannot maintain it.

The discrimination is similar. I don’t think discrimination on color is purely based on color, it’s based on other concepts behind that more so than the color, and similar perceptions come to light with body type.

It may be forthright to say this, but there are many white supremacist groups that don’t base their racism on color, they use this to imply other things like intellectual inferiority, ‘sub human’ aspects, and some even go to the point so as to illustrate that people of a different color (other than ‘white’) are another species altogether, and it’s not the color, it’s the concept of inferiority that propels these hate groups, and it’s almost identical where body type is concerned. If obesity, or even a few extra pounds could be eliminated by diet and exercise, you think that Weight Watchers, Jenny Craig and other groups would still be around? But they’re still around, and they’ve been around for decades. Why?

Because their diets will never work. Life, its demands, and it’s unpredictable elements may prevent people from spending the bulk of their leisure time in the gym to be thin. Some people do have lives, and sure, they may not be able to put in the time to be rake thin, but if they’re fit, that matters more than how lean they are.

So, the entire argument about fat hatred, may not be related to ‘color’, then again racism isn’t purely related to color. They both involve the concept of social, personal and interpersonal inferiority. These types of thoughts or agendas are targeted to make people hate themselves and feel out of place. How different is that to racism? It’s not that much different. Hardly different.

Sexism is about inferiority, so is classism, so is chauvinism, and so is discrimation based on physical appearance or physical disabilities, and I don't see how these differ from racism.

I'm not sure what it is, but many people somehow think that racism is all about color, and I've probably offended you in saying that, but I don't think of it as being purely based on color. Sure, it's part of it, but not all of it.

Sure a person's skin colour can't be changed, but there are many who can't change their body types either. I know I'll never reach a size 0, no matter how many times I go to the gym, because I've done it, and I couldn't reach that far, sure I decreased, but my bone structure didn't let me go that far, and if a person judges me (the way they look at me, their attitude, if they frown, avoid sitting next to me on the bus, etc) then that's almost identical to racism.

Anonymous said...

While it is true that some people will never be a size zero, nobody is MEANT to be obese, point blank if you consume fewer caleries than you burn the result is weightloss, and most diets DO work, they only fail to work when you go off the diet. Food is fuel for the body, not entertainment.
If you unplug a TV you cant say the TV does not work because it nolonger comes on, and if you pump too much power into the TV and it explodes you still cant blame the TV for not working, you need the RIGHT balance of electricity, just like your body needs the RIGHT balance of nutrients. Too much and your body stores the rest as fat, too little and you become sick and weak.
Its interesting that only when people go off the diet that they claim it does not work, while when they were on the diet they sung its praises.

Roberta Lipp said...

an old blog of mine:

People will freely offer unsolicited weight loss advice. But do people freely offer hygiene tips to people who are in need? Nope, they actually don’t know how to handle it. They consult with Human Resources about how to break it to a co-worker that they should wear deodorant, because no one wants to make anyone feel that badly about themselves. But no one has a problem telling fat people “you have such a pretty face, if only you would lose weight”. “Oh, you’re such a nice guy, if only you would use a little mouthwash, I’d have a hundred girls I’d fix you up with!”

(Actually, it's from an older blog than that, but apparently it warrants periodic renewal.)

My point is, it has nothing to do with changeability. It has to do with oppression, and, ultimately, misogyny. Even when it's men.

Anonymous said...

It isn't just happening to fat people (like me) but smokers (like me) drinkers (like me) woman (like me) lesbian or bi (like me) I am surprised they have not started mass producing some sort of symbol we have to wear and set up a camp for us to go to. If we do stand up now the Right which are Wrong will take over. It will be then we will wonder what happen to all of our rights. I have the right to be obese, drink, smoke and be gay if I want to be. Now they want to say if you are any of those things and more you are wrong and bad. Will women have to cover themselves from head to toe soon? We can even travel do to gas prices being so high - people are being foreclosed on. This world is falling apart and we just sit here and do nothing! If you want to speak out about a subject just write it out on my web site too! Thanks!

Anonymous said...

Yo, I'm sick of the hate from these people who throw their words around like some sorta fool. This crap has gone on for decades without anyone saying a damn thing. People oppressing others because of the way they look, 'cept just like said earlier, it's not a race thing, but it should be looked on as a similar act. These clowns are in the same league as white supremacists, but they're not, because I think a majority of people feel that way, regardless of whether or not they say it, think silent majority.

That being said, I'm also pretty disgusted in myself being overweight/obese, but I don't need some goddamn hate mongerer degrading me and abusing me. What a load of shit this site is and I can't wait to do something about it.

Anonymous said...

Oh, and by "this site" at the end, I meant the hate site, not this blog, just thought it could be read wrong.

Fight the norm.