The Politics of Fat (Vote “No” on Proposition Fat)

This was brought to my attention today:

Fat Happiness Day Tues. January 31, 2012 Time: 12 – 1:30pm Place: SFPIRG Lounge, TC 326 in the Rotunda, SFU Burnaby Campus
Fat Happiness Day is a chance for members of the SFU community to gather together for a facilitated discussion about the politics of fat and body size diversity. Bring your fat happiness – and yes, also your struggle and pain around this issue – and join us in the SFPIRG lounge. This event is co-sponsored by Fat Panic! Vancouver – an alliance of people of all sizes who are committed to ending the oppression of fat people, and to working towards a society in which no one is taught to hate their own or anyone else’s body, for any reason. There will be cupcakes!

(Did anyone else just imagine a group of obese individuals with signs like “Fat For Life”, “Too Obese To Quit”, and “Lick The Jelly in My Roll”, while chanting something like, “We’re fat, We’re phat, Get used to it”?)

Ok, wtf? Fat Happiness Day? Fat Panic? The oppression of fat people? If you’re so fat that you feel oppressed, I don’t think that you need to be hanging out with a group of people encouraging you to love your obesity and eat a cupcake. Speaking from experience, it’s a terrible feeling when you’re made fun of or rejected for the size of your body. But that doesn’t mean that I think an event like this should exist. Why can’t it be more general and focus on health and self-esteem? My friend Maria made a good point…the “skinny” women I’ve known throughout my life are the ones with the biggest body issues (Are men the same?).

Obviously no one should hate their body, or anyone else’s, but I just don’t see this as a positive event like it’s supposed to be. I’m confident and I love my body, but that doesn’t mean I’m not going to work on changing it and better my own health. I don’t aspire to be skinny, just epic hotness. If a person is “fat” and unhappy, no amount of acceptance from other people is going to change that. I’m not going to feel better about myself just because some douches suddenly tell me it’s ok for me to be above a certain size now. That they “accept” me. I think this whole thing should be focused on helping people feel good about themselves no matter what size they are, and whether or not they want to change that. Once other people see how confident you are and how great you feel about yourself, they’ll naturally want to be around you and accept you. On the otherhand, if you shuffle around like a fat slob and present yourself to the world that way, that’s how you’ll be perceived and I’d probably judge you too.

So, a couple thoughts to leave you with. Don’t be a fat bastard. And cupcakes? Eat a dick. Less calories.

What do you guys think?

PS. I wrote this post while I was in the bathtub.


5 thoughts on “The Politics of Fat (Vote “No” on Proposition Fat)

  1. Hahaha.. nice post. There would be a “heroin happiness day” if heroin wasn’t so socially unaccepted. Wish you well in your journey of pound shedding. Eating as nature intended is the key.

  2. it’s sad to me that you’ve missed the point entirely about what Fat Panic! Vancouver is all about. It’s about creating cultural and societal awareness that how we feel and perecive body image and apparent “perfection” is not at all the result of our own independent thought. Rather it is a by-product of a capitalist system that seeks to leverage and abuse basic human instincts and psychology for their profitable ends. Look at the billion-dollar diet industry, for instance. There would be no such indistry if there there were not CEO and marketing divisions devising ways in which to exploit and manipulate people. This is what Fat Panic! is about – reclaiming the right to be independent people free from systemic oppression.

    • Why is it sad to you? I haven’t missed the point at all. I just don’t agree with it. I don’t find it to be a productive or healthy way to raise awareness or to protest “a capitalist system that seeks to leverage and abuse basic human instincts and psychology for their profitable ends”. I also disagree with your point that body image is not the result of our own independent thought. While I do agree that there are governments and companies out there that do exploit y/our struggles, I do not agree that we are simply all sheep, programmed to think and act a certain way. That’s a bullshit claim. Thank you for your comment.

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