Article: Thin Privilege and Fat Logic
Thin Privilege and Fat Logic
Normally it's bad form to start an article with a bunch of pictures. So what? This is the Douchebag of the Month Column; we're not up for a Pulitzer. So we're going to start by rustling your jimmies.
Welcome to the world of Thin Privilege: a term concocted to make obese people -- the vast majority of whom simply refuse to exercise sufficient hand-to-mouth control -- into a persecuted minority.
"Thin Privilege" is a concept onto which many overweight and obese people have latched in recent years, spurred on by movements such as the National Association to Advance Fat Acceptance (NAAFA), in the face of simmering resentment that seems to be building about the impositions the obese cause on the health care system and public spaces in general.
This post was taken from the blog "This Is Thin Privilege" on Tumblr
Part of the purpose of society is to take care of its weakest members, but when that weakness tends to be a result of a willful negligence to one's health, an unwillingness to make good decisions, or bluntly, an inability to keep one's hand away from one's mouth, the burden on society becomes unnecessarily heavy, and many of those who are putting in the effort to carry their own weight, begin to resent carrying more than their own responsibly-managed share.
"Privilege" is a fairly recent tool used by activists for framing social issues in the context of an oppressed minority looking out onto the advantages of being part of a majority group. In some cases, such as "White Privilege", the term has legitimate uses, especially in making certain people see that things they take for granted in their lives are as much a result of their luck as any other factor.
Can't handle having your feelings hurt by people who point out the reality of your situation? Well then partner, just create your own minority group and *bam*, now you're being persecuted.
But you can't fill in the blank that precedes the term with just anything, simply because you happen to be a constituent of a particular group of people who want to complain about their treatment by society. In a rational world, you'd never see a 'hygienic privilege' site dedicated to people who are upset for being treated poorly because they refuse to shower and brush their teeth.
Yes, we are comparing people who refuse to address their weight issues with those who refuse to bathe; both are a part of routine life maintenance conducted by functional, well-adjusted adults, capable of making good decisions in their long-term interests. And don't confuse the issue; you may not be at society's optimal weight, but you should constantly be trying to achieve your own optimal size and level of fitness, whatever that may be. Avoiding personal hygiene creates an increased likelihood for both catching and spreading infections and diseases, and so does refusing to be physically active where possible and make smart choices about the things that go into your mouth.
Now let us introduce you to the underlying foundation of Thin Privilege: Fat Logic
Fat Logic is the term used to describe the mental contortions that justify one's refusal to improve their situation by making better choices. There is evidence to support the conclusion that obesity negatively affects your ability to think clearly, and Fat Logic goes a long way towards demonstrating that in some sense, Obesity is a mental disease.
Sure, the world's always going to be populated with people who make bad decisions that ruin their lives. Self-destructive behavior seems to be as Human a trait as walking upright. But the problem is that self-destructive behavior doesn't occur in a vacuum; others are affected by those bad decisions. If irrational people only hurt themselves with their bad decisions, nobody would really care; the problems would eventually go away on their own, one way or another.
But nowadays, thanks to the advances in modern medicine, social safety nets, and entire industries of people who exist solely to keep dumbasses alive, stupidity no longer selects itself out of the gene pool. And worse, it imposes its burden on most on those who do make the good, tough, decisions with their lives; whether it be through increased taxation to support a progressively more unhealthy population, or through increased costs of services to make up for lost revenue due to the need for special accommodations for the obese.
For example: Al Lutz is a serious Disney fan - he runs MiceChat.com, a Disney fan site which covers the multi-million dollar Disney parks and resorts. He's also been stuck on the world-famous "It's A Small World" ride, due to the passengers on his boat being too heavy, personally witnessing park staff being put in the awkward position of having to request certain passengers disembark the ride.
"If these boats get stuck . . . they have to send someone back in there to lighten the load on the boat," said Lutz. "They've even built a platform next to that curve because they've had so many problems."
It's a (somewhat less) Small World
Well-known for its celebration of the world's different cultures and the song played on an unending loop, the famous ride has been in service for almost 50 years . But in 2007, according to Lutz and the New York Times, the depth of the river had to be increased to accommodate boatloads of passengers who weigh more than when the ride opened. And while Disney did not release the figures, it can be assumed that the bill for increasing the depth of the river was at a minimum of a few hundred thousand dollars if not into the millions; a cost which is passed on to the consumer through ticket sales and, ironically, concession prices.
Fat activists refuse to acknowledge the impact of obesity, not only on public health, but on social order, and insist on imposing the consequences of their poor health choices onto others.
Yes, fleets of engineers should be dispatched to provide a solution to the problem of you imposing on someone else's space without their permission
Totally the architect's fault.
Shame is a concept most people grasp when they're young; you feel ashamed when you're caught in a lie to your parents, or for embarrassing yourself by acting in an inappropriate manner in public. Different cultures have different levels of shame. In China, large sections of the population think it's perfectly fine for their kids to drop trou and take a crap on a public sidewalk". Children over a certain age who did that in much of the rest of the world, would be shamed by their parents so as to prevent that kind of unacceptable behavior in the future.
But when some people reach adulthood, they get an expectation that they're now free from the feeling of shame, regardless of how out-of-line with the general culture their behavior may be. After all, everyone is born equal, so everyone's behavior should be tolerated equally, right?
Studies have shown that scorn doesn't accomplish its intended effect of motivating most people to improve themselves. We're not arguing against this. Our argument here is that shame and scorn are how society draws the line at behavior it collectively deems as inappropriate. And with 78% of American's not meeting basic activity level recommendations, a 76% increase in Type II diabetes in adults 30-40 yrs old since 1990, and eight out of 10 over 25's overweight, that's a pretty good indication that a line needs to be drawn.
At the end of the day, "Fat Shaming" an individual probably isn't the best way of motivating them towards achieving a healthy weight. But then, neither is Fat Enabling, by accommodating the delusion that it's perfectly fine to be obese.
Shame not only can, but should be collectively heaped upon groups who espouse anti-social, unhealthy, or dangerous views. If a society does not express contempt for people who are a net drain on it, but instead tolerates or even celebrates those people, that society is not going to be around for very long; some other society with its values and priorities in the right place will ensure they fade into history.
Total Comments 99
12/09/2013 2:17pm, #2
Good fat read here:
I had a friend who had been anorexic and spent her teenage years in and out of hospital, being fed through a nasogastric tube. She recovered in her 20s and managed to channel all of her intrusive obsessional thinking about food into athletics. One day she said to me that she didn’t understand why she could be hospitalised against her will for not eating enough, and yet there was no limitation on how fat you could get. It was completely unfair, she said, that you could be refused alcohol if intoxicated but roll into your local fish-and-chip shop 100 kg overweight and be served the equivalent of a week’s worth of calories for lunch.
Conclusion: Compared with metabolically healthy normal-weight individuals, obese persons are at increased risk for adverse long-term outcomes even in the absence of metabolic abnormalities, suggesting that there is no healthy pattern of increased weight.
12/09/2013 3:23pm, #3
I have nothing against big people. Hell, I AM big people (heaviest weight 260lbs). I never felt like a victim, and I never felt like the world was being unfair to me.
There are a lot of ways to end up seriously overweight. It is a thing that can and does happen to a lot of people for a lot of reasons. Some of them very legitimate. But this attitude that you are a persecuted minority is just repugnant to me.
if you are a very heavy person, you have three options:
Alter: Do what it takes to get to a better weight if you want to.
Adapt: Learn to manipulate your environment and alter your social interactions to minimize the negative aspects of your condition.
Cope: Don't change anything, and learn to accept your condition. This exposes you to certain social consequences, but so does everything else you do.
You will find that these three options are exactly how you would deal with any life scenario that you don't like, because that's what being overweight is: It's a thing that happens.
What makes "Fat Acceptance" worse, is that they are misusing the word "acceptance."
We already accept you. We are a modern, evolved society, and we pretty much accept everyone. No one demands you lose weight. There is no compulsory weight management system in place; no mandatory weigh-ins or dietary restrictions either. Be fat if you want to. We accept this. You are already accepted.
No. What they are asking for (in these examples) is "Accommodation" which is where we alter our lives to facilitate their needs/desires as fat people. That is why non-fat people (we call them "skinnies") get cranky. I will not make you get smaller, but I don't have to like having half your ass in my seat on the plane. Or being expected to run larger seats (and therefore fewer patrons) in my plane/theater/bus/ballpark, just so you don't have to feel anything negative about your life.
Your emotional/physical health is your own lookout. If your self-esteem is not resilient enough to handle being fat, then do what it takes to not be fat. If it is, then this stuff doesn't rattle your cage anyway. Either way, you are already 'accepted." What you want is to be "accommodated," and that ain't my gig.And lo, Kano looked down upon the field and saw the multitudes. Amongst them were the disciples of Uesheba who were greatly vexed at his sayings. And Kano spake: "Do not be concerned with the mote in thy neighbor's eye, when verily thou hast a massive stick in thine ass".
--Scrolls of Bujutsu: Chapter 5 vs 10-14.
12/09/2013 3:55pm, #4
- Join Date
- May 2007
- Lafayette, IN
Thin privilege is being able to see my dick without a mirror. What a crock of ****.
12/09/2013 4:29pm, #5
- Join Date
- Mar 2006
I wouldn't eat so much fucking pie if it wasn't made out of awesome. The problem is the farming industry. They should be forced to genetically engineer food so it all tastes like Subway tomatoes.
12/09/2013 4:35pm, #6
Originally Posted by Scrapper
- Join Date
- Jan 2010
- Southeast WI
This is an issue I tend to stay out of, because I'm a naturally thin person. I'm in the worst shape of my life right now (in the course of preparing for a baby, moving, having and caring for a baby, and moving again I've pretty much said "**** it" in the fitness department for the past two years) and I'm still what passes for thin in the USA. I'm not healthy, but I'm still pretty thin. With that in mind, I try not to get too down on people who are suffering consequences for the same mistakes I'm making.
All that said, I'm with Scrapper. I have a problem with anyone who expects the world around him to adapt to him. This, I think, is a cultural problem that goes far beyond obesity.
12/09/2013 4:54pm, #7
- Join Date
- Aug 2013
- Alexandria, VA
I'm ok with other people being obese. When the zombies get here they'll eat the fat ones first.
12/09/2013 5:13pm, #8
- Join Date
- Feb 2011
I could care less about fat or skinny. I care about fit. I've got skinny friends that are horribly unfit, and some large buddies who are super athletic.
If you are unfit, and struggling to function in normal society due to being generally unhealthy by choice, I have little sympathy for you. Make better decisions about your health and lifestyle, and things will get a lot easier for you. Don't try to promote poor fitness choices as a disability. And just because you are skinny, don't try to convince us that you are fit and healthy. I see you wheezing when you walk up two flights of stairs.
12/09/2013 7:43pm, #9"So, yeah, Zen teachers may well insult you, work you to the bone, hit you with sticks, shout verbal abuse at you, and punch the **** out of you.
And when the ****'s been punched out of you, you might just find that you're far better-off without it." - Vieux Normand
"So in short, BJJ wins again. BJJ, and chainmail." - TheMightyMcClaw
"On bullshido, your opinions are not sacred, neither are your feelings." - Scrapper
"You entered the lions' den. Don't bitch if you get eaten." - danniboi07
"Needless to say, it's much easier to clear a bunch of drunk kids out of your house when you're yelling GTFO and carrying a samurai sword." - DerAuslander
"Eventually, I realized it doesn't matter what art you train, what matters is the method in which you train. Training in an alive manner, under skilled and qualified instruction, is the single most important aspect of gaining martial skill. All else is window dressing." - JNP : Saying it how it is!
12/09/2013 9:13pm, #10
- Join Date
- May 2013
There are two problems here: People are dumb. No even uneducated but have their brains full of ****. The other is learned helplessness.
First of all the human body if complex. We don't know ****. The problem is idiots claiming ****. Oh and the good old "this **** worked for me in the specific situation for my specific goals so everyone should do the same even though they might have different bodies and different goals".
Fat is bad, right? No, carbs are bad! Some fats are bad, some are good. You got to eat at least 12 meals a day! Nah intermediate fasting is what you need!
Not even basics of proper nutrition are known by a the average person but they are constantly told pseudo-scientific bull-crap and lies. You wont have any great weight loss success when you don't even know what you are doing.
Also people have no idea what an healthy body constitutes. Especially woman. What woman think to be the ideal is way too skinny. Under-eating is way worse than overeating! Also that bullshit about weightlifting:
So people need to be educated. About the basics, not about some new-fangled diet theories that change every year.
The other thing is learned helplessness. People have the feeling that they have no control over their live. Not even about their body. They try some fancy diet that is set up for failure and oh miracle yes they constantly fail until they give up.
Most people don't believe that you can build any significant amount of muscle mass without roids. Some people are fated to be out of shape while some chosen ones go to the gym to look at their beauty in the mirror. They don't look like that because they work hard, they surely are all using drugs!
That is exactly the mentality that leads to those fat people in phrost post acting like they are are oppressed minority. They just happen to be fat. It is not their live choices. They have no control over their live.
In summary we see that obesity in society is a symptom of the society being ill. That is lacking education, believing bullshit and encouraging a mentality of helplessness.
The cure is of course education as it is with most issues. Also shooting those greedy bastards selling snake oil and telling lies but there might be legal issues with that.