Monday, December 04, 2006

Fatties told, "Put down the cookies or else you will be POOR"

This weekend I read an interesting article in the New York Times that just left me shaking my head at how crazy our culture is about fat people. Basically this was an article that showed several different ways fat people experience discrimination in our culture and how that discrimination often results in fat people having lower incomes and less wealth.

Now, none of this is any great shock to me. Discrimination is part of our culture and as a fat person, I have experienced it.

But one might wonder how a respectable newspaper might approach this issue. Will they present this as a problem with our society? Or will they take a neutral objective stance and just report the facts? As it happens the NYT didn’t take either of the above approaches. The theme of their article seems to be “Health scares haven’t seemed to motivate people to lose weight, let’s give them some extra incentive by telling them that being fat will mean that they will be poorer than they otherwise would be” Here is the opening to their article:

"As you snatch a couple more Christmas cookies or down another eggnog, you might be thinking about what those extra calories will do to your health. But have you considered what they will do to your wealth? The sugar and fat will add pounds, which can lead to heart disease, diabetes and a shortened life span. There is another consequence to packing on extra weight: being fat costs money — tens of thousands of dollars over a lifetime."

Surely the only reason anyone is fat is because they don’t have enough information about the consequences of being fat: The health risks, the discrimination, etc. I mean, no one would choose that right? So either fat people are lazy and are staying fat because they are too lazy to get up off their asses to take a walk around the block OR They are ignorant about the effects of being overweight OR being fat isn’t as much of a choice as people might like to think. NYT appears to take the view that if only they told us poor fat people that fat people are discriminated against and that discrimination has an economic impact, we’ll get off our fat asses and put down the Christmas cookies and eggnog. *rolls eyes*

Next the NYT will tell homosexuals that they can go straight and minorities that they should blend more with the mainstream culture.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Well, I must start eating less cookies then... but the point is that I hardly ever eat anything more than what I'm supposed to... What do they have to say to that?
Anyhow, discrimination is a world wide issue.