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iApprove: Kate Harding’s Shapely Prose.

February 2, 2009

Fat discrimination is something that has bothered me for quite some time.

Let me go into this a bit.  I am fat.  Technically speaking, at 5’3 and 180 pounds, I am obese.  Exactly twice in my life have I been rudely commented upon by complete strangers, but other than that I have been the butt of no ill-spirited expression.

Yet I find myself continually exposed to discrimination against fatness.  Mainly in grocery-store magazines.  I’m sure you know the ones I’m talking about; they show the latest gorgeous Hollywood fashion plate and a caption reading “Lose 20 lbs in Two Weeks!” or “Shed Unwanted Body Fat!”

I do not have anything against losing weight.  In fact, I have personally lost weight, and it is an awesome experience that I would like to keep doing.  I also realize that excessive fat can have a negative impact on health.  But the standards that our society has stooped to over Fatness are ridiculous.

Try being 20 lbs. overweight.  OMG, you’re fat!  40 lbs. overweight?  Eew!  Ick!  NOBODY likes a fat person.  And NOBODY wants to be fat.  We should all be uber-thin and positively gorgeous.

Nothing against thin people here, but let’s talk realism.  We aren’t all built to be stick figures.  Some of us are genetically programmed to retain more fat than others.  Even if we lose enough to reach healthy weight, we’re still going to be more fat than you – and a good bit more fat than Barbie Hollywood.

I guess what I’m trying to say here is that I think it’s highly unreasonable to claim that everyone must follow the same fat-level standards to be attractive — or healthy.  Contrary to popular belief, an extra twenty to thirty pounds is not going to kill you.

Kate Harding’s Shapely Prose is one of many fat-acceptance blogs going about the Internet.  It is populated by three women – Kate Harding, Fillyjonk, and Sweet Machine – who blog about their experiences being fat and facing anti-fat trash talk.  Note that they, like I, are not against losing weight, particularly for health reasons.  They’re just tired of taking flak for having slightly offbeat body sizes.

Learn more at http://kateharding.net

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