Photo by Sharon McCutcheon, Unsplash.
Their end is destruction, their god is their belly, and they glory in their shame, with minds set on earthly things. ~ Philippians 3:19
Today I had brunch at a lovely diner, famous for serving delicious all-day breakfast. I had two scrambled eggs, one turkey sausage link, and two slices of dry wheat toast with coffee. This is supposed to be their “diet” breakfast, which according to the menu has about 550 calories.
If I ate three meals of that size per day, I would probably gain weight. Fortunately, I eat only two meals per day, brunch, and dinner, with no snacks or caloric drinks in between. To many people, this is an austere lifestyle, but I attribute this perception largely to inflated notions about what constitutes reasonable portions of food. I’m not a huge fan of exercise, and as such, I’d rather just not shovel excess food into my mouth in the first place. I don’t want to hear Fat Acceptance advocates decrying my “thin privilege.” The notion of social privilege suggests I’m getting benefits I haven’t earned, when in fact, I’m thin because I choose to be. My body reflects the aggregate of my daily choices over time.
This morning, while I was eating, I saw many overweight people stuffing their faces with huge portions of eggs, cheese, breakfast meats, potatoes, and pieces of bread, often smothered in sausage gravy. I saw their “bad genes” and “crazy hormones” making them obese, as they shoveled stacks of heavily-embellished, syrup-drenched pancakes and waffles into their mouths. The majority of the patrons were overweight, and some were clearly obese. I have no problem unraveling the “mystery” of why they are fat, especially if they gorge themselves in this way three times a day.
Just because the restaurant serves portions fit for a horse doesn’t mean a patron is forced to eat like a horse. Many restaurants now serve food on plates that are as big as the dinner platter my mother used to set in the center of our table, with food meant to feed the entire family. I think a typical individual meal at the Cheesecake Factory is suitable for a family of four.
I’m not the least bit surprised so many Americans are fat. I am surprised that so many people seem confused as to why.
Predictably, feminists are in the eye of the fat storm, reinforcing evidence-free theories about obesity. In fact, the Fat Acceptance Movement originated in the same social milieu as feminism, and the two have been intertwined from the start. According to Fat Acceptance lore, beauty is nothing more than a social construct, which can, therefore, be deconstructed and reassembled to match the feminist ideal. Whether you are slim or weigh a half ton, you are “beautiful,” say feminists, and you have a “right” to parade around in the nude and demand everyone else celebrate your “beauty.”
Do fat people have a right to feel good about themselves? Yes, of course. And I would say they also have the right to walk down the street without facing harassment and ridicule. I’m appalled whenever I read stories about rude, obnoxious people mooing at a fat woman as she passes by. This behavior is despicable. Discussing obesity, in general, is not the same as singling out and ridiculing an individual going about his or her daily life. There is no excuse for the latter.
If Fat Acceptance merely meant shunning people *who shun fat people* in public, I would be happy to support the cause. I disagree with being rude to fat people. Period.
I also agree it’s absurd that fashion models are over 5’10” and look like they weigh about 100 pounds. Some of them genuinely look anorexic. Maybe there is some merit in the argument for “real size” models. By “real size,” I don’t mean obese, but rather women of a normal, healthy weight, as has been defined on standardized height and weight charts for decades. I don’t see any reason models can’t be 5’4″ and weigh 130 pounds, which in theory may help curb the eating disorders that plague millions of people.
If Fat Acceptance were merely about promoting real-sized models, I would be happy to support the cause.
Of course, Fat Acceptance is about both of these issues. My views and their views intersect. The problem is that the Fat Acceptance Movement demands much more.
Fat Acceptance is a natural fit for feminists, whose ideology promotes narcissism and anarchy. Feminists refuse to accept that society should have any standards. A complete lack of standards should be the standard.
Never mind that obese people face serious problems with health, hygiene, and mobility. There is a difference between being a little overweight and being obese. There is nothing sexy about being so fat, doctors find a month-old turkey sandwich in your fat folds. There is nothing beautiful about being so fat you fuse with your couch and have to be surgically removed. Problems associated with obesity naturally inspire revulsion, and that will continue to be the case for most people, no matter how many vomit-inducing photos essays Fat Acceptance advocates foist on the public.
The last time someone fed me, I was a toddler. Today no one puts food in my mouth but me. It’s perfectly obvious to me who is controlling my weight. I don’t think people who lie to obese people about why they’re fat are doing them any favors: Eating too much makes you fat – official.
Yes, food is abundant, lots of it high in calories. I think everyone can sympathize with people who struggle with their weight. But it’s one thing to struggle and quite another to strut around, proud of your gluttony, insisting the rest of us accept obesity as healthy and beautiful.