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Why I’ll never be cool with the fat acceptance movement.

16 June 2014, Monday Leave a comment

So this is probably going to get me a lot of grief, but I’m just going to go ahead and say it. I’m prejudiced against fat people. Now before you start banging out that hate mail, hear me out. There’s a couple of things I have to explain.

First of all, When I say “fat people” I don’t mean slightly chubby or tubby-because-you’re-so-busy-you-haven’t been-taking-proper-care-of-yourself fat. I mean obese people.

obese
ə(ʊ)ˈbiːs/
adjective
  1. grossly fat or overweight.

Secondly, we come to the reason why I find obesity so unacceptable. Barring strange medical conditions such as hyperthyroidism or Chushing’s syndrome, obesity is almost entirely self inflicted. Yes, that’s right. You are responsible for the condition of your body. No one else is. The mass that has accumulated on your frame did not magically appear out of thin air. You put it there. When I see a “large” person, I can’t help but start trying to figure out how many chicken wings, sodas and burgers it took them to get to their present mass.

Now don’t get me wrong, I have a sweet tooth too, and I blessed with an active metabolism. I enjoy the occasional binge, but I also have a condition that requires that I watch what I eat. Obesity is a disease, and the easiest cure is to watch what you eat and how you eat it.

Third. We are evolutionarily conditioned to pick the “fittest” partner to mate with in order to have the most genetically successful offspring. Being obese does not give prospective mates the impression of being the fittest available option. This is the point which is most intrinsic to the prejudice against fat people.

Being obese implies that you might be sedentary or have self-control problems. Being obese means that you might have low willpower or are fulfilled by the instant gratification that a quick food fix might bring. Or as I mentioned before, being obese could mean you are suffering from a rare and debilitating medical condition that could potentially be passed on to your offspring. Being obese also comes with the usual assorted secondary conditions such as heart and blood pressure problems and other more serious conditions as the obesity becomes more morbid.

There was a period of time in China where fat people were considered prosperous and therefore attractive. Being fat in China at the time meant that you were wealthy because you could afford to eat beyond excess and not have to do any manual labour (exercise) because you could afford servants. This is an outdated social perception than no longer applies today. Nowadays, if you want people to think that you’re rich, you drive a Mercedes and wear a Rolex. Arguments against this point should also consider that well-to-do Chinese folks at the time also kept ridiculously long and impractical fingernails to show that they literally didn’t have to lift a finger around the house. Good luck bring that back in style.

Bottom line. Obesity is a disease. Being fat is not “beautiful”, it is not attractive. It is a sign of a self-abuse. It is a serious and real medical condition. The most disheartening part of all this is that there are people who are trying to make obesity acceptable. Yes, we are responsible for the condition of our bodies and no one should have any say as to what we do with them. And yes, there aren’t any laws regulating body weight or shape or size. But there aren’t any laws preventing self mutilation either, and the social stigma attached to that is almost indistinguishable to obesity to me.

So, no. I do not “accept” fat people, any more than I “accept” people with serious medical conditions. And that’s why I’ll never be cool with the fat acceptance movement.

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