Today in fat-hating America
Today I was reading this really interesting, thoughtful PCWorld article about Facebook and privacy, which I came across through StumbleUpon:
Seven great paragraphs of analysis about people’s behavior and predictions about whether there will be a mass exodus from Facebook; whether people will listen to the experts about the ways that their Facebook accounts violates their privacy.
And then comes paragraph eight.
I doubt they will. Experts are full of great advice that we don’t listen to — they’ve been talking about this exercise thing for years, but obesity still lives large — so why would people quit a service that offers so much for something not immediately noticeable like privacy? The masses won’t leave Facebook unless a better product comes along. And obesity’s going to stick around until someone invents a vegetable that tastes like bacon.
It just really blindsided me. I mean, I expect that if I’m reading anything that has to do with exercise, food, health, or some combination thereof, there will be some mention of obesity. I also tend to expect it from more philosophical/ethical discussions about overconsumption and environmental sustainability. I expect it when people are talking about kids, or clothing, or being “good” or “bad.” I expect it because it happens so often; not because it “should” be that way, but because it just is. So I prepare myself for the fat hate when I encounter those things.
What I don’t like—at all—is the idea that I should have to prepare myself for fat hate, all the time.
The last paragraph of the article left me angry. But upon reflection, I’m not just angry at that particular writer, I’m angry that I live in a culture so saturated with fat hate that there truly is no public space that is safe. At any moment, I could be going about my business and bang—out of the blue—FATTY HATE!!