Murky waters, here, but I've been hearing a lot of annoying, misinformed and poorly worded comments on fat people lately. Cases in point:
1) Discussion with an acquaintance. She is very slim and barely 5 ft tall, and I am 5'10. She was telling me that she could only find cute clothes that fit in vintage shops since she is so petite. We shared horrible shopping experiences, and then she said: I never understand why some shops sell XXL miniskirts or sequined jackets. I mean, why would fat people emphasize their body?
What really got me was that she had just as much difficulty finding nice clothes that fit than fat women! NO empathy there.
2)Discussion with my track and field group: my coach was telling us to have a healthy diet while training, and I ruefully admitted that I eat lots and lots of candy, chocolate and consume litres of lemonade. The coach then said: Oh, as long as you don't get fat, you're OK.
Hmmmm...so health means being thin, right?
I am a recovering bulimic. I know what it means to hate your body, to treat it like crap, to punish it for existing. Did shaming myself transform me into the thin person I wanted to be? No. Yet this is what we try to accomplish with fat people, shaming them into becoming acceptable in our eyes.
The way we talk about fat, the way we treat people who are fat is disgraceful and wrong. Better people have said it much better than I could, but fat discrimination in terms of health care or travel or anything really is an infringement of human rights.
And I want to talk back.
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