NotBlueAtAll

I'm just a fat gal with a blog and an opinion. Well, lots of opinions.

Bit Of A Rant…

July28

I had this very cohesive thought and it was so great…when I was in the shower this morning. D’oh! I hate that! So much has happened since then that I can’t really remember my whole schpeel, but here goes:

You know the people who insist it’s unhealthy to be fat? The ones who are major yo-yo dieters? The ones where dieting is a religion? Or the ones where, “I just want you to be happy and healthy and you can’t be happy and fat?!” The people who practically gargle with diet soda and energy drinks? The people who believe in their heart of hearts (how did that become a saying?) that being fat is a choice? That being fat is a personal failure or sin?

These are the people we cannot change. They refuse to question the information being fed to them. They are marketed to very specifically and they swallow every last calorie-free morsel with a smile (and a side-eye towards the fat)! They have resigned themselves to a life of judgment, shame, guilt, penance and sadly, ignorance. Those who don’t even bother to read the labels on their diet beverages and bars and energy thingies but will most certainly tell you why what you’re eating is so “bad bad bad!” go about the world in a bubble. We cannot reach them. And I don’t think we should even try.

You may be thinking that this is very cynical of me or very judgmental, I’m not judging people by their looks, but by their actions. I do think that this is an acceptable form of judgment for the most part. I believe that your actions and impact in/on the world should convey your true self or nature. I may be off base here and if I am, do let me know. All I am saying is that this group of people who insist upon “health” and then turn around and commit to a life of feeling gross in the name of dieting? We cannot get to them or even convince them that being fat is not a choice. No more than we can convince many other groups who target and/or attack the oppressed and marginalized with hate and violence. We just can’t and I don’t think we should waste our resources on them. I am saying that it’s time to walk away from these people and let them be. I know they won’t let us be, but we don’t have to engage with them in conversation or debates.

I do think we should be trying to get our message of positivity and overall health for everyone out into the public! I think that their are millions who would be open to it and benefit from it! The more people I drop the f-bomb on (FAT!) the more are surprised and open to hearing more facts! Because people are suspicious, people are angry and people are tired of the same old marketing and dieting run around. Somewhere along the way their common sense said, “Hmm…this doesn’t seem quite right.” but with nothing else to go on they simply leave it be. That’s where Fat Liberation can fit in! We can offer our resources and information and help people! Yes, help actual people live better lives & happier lives! Without guilt or shame!

Yes, I wish everyone could read “Health At Every Size” by Linda Bacon PHD. I do! Because it is an eye opener, a mind expander and a path towards understanding just how fucked up this dieting thing is and what it’s doing to our bodies and minds! It’s sick and it’s dangerous! When I first read that dieting fucks with your brain chemistry, I had to take a lap, y’all! I had to let that shit sink in for a good while. I value my brain! I value my body! I value my sanity and my life! I just do, not sure if this is an instinctive behavior or if I’ve developed this over my 33 years of life. But damn! We are being abused and punished and shamed for lies made up by someone else (dieting industry/marketing) for profit! But what it’s doing to millions of people all over the western world is a crime against nature and not just humanity!

These corporate machines are created for one purpose: Profit! Greed! Riches! The result is hundreds of millions of disordered eaters, self-haters, body abusers, fucked up brain chemistry and the inability to even know what and when and how hunger feels like or fullness feels like or how to satiate and fuel our bodies. We’re complicated little entities. No doubt! But these corporations know exactly what they are doing. Jenny Craig is owned by Nestle. Weight Watchers was owned by Heinz (and they still make their packaged products) and is now owned by Artal Luxembourg who is also heavily invested in Keebler cookies and Sunshine biscuits. Think about that for a minute. These corporations have no interest in your health or well being, they only want your wallets emptied into their coffers! You tell someone this and their eyes bug right out of their head. Go ahead, lay some truth on ’em!

A friend recently posed this to me in regards to intuitive eating:
“encouraging intuitive eating while also insisting that  processed foods are A-Okay. there are armies of evil scientists working round the clock designing foods that are intended to completely fuck all normal human hunger and satiety signals. how can anyone manage to eat intuitively when they are pumped full of pseudofood-drugs designed to insure they will never feel either genuine hunger or genuine satiety? different foods don’t have different moral worth. but they do have different biological effects. to me it just seems like setting people up for endless frustration and unhappiness, if they continue to attempt to eat intuitively while also ingesting things that make that completely impossible, by design.”

My response:
“We’re talking about teaching intuitive eating to disordered eaters. To help get them started on the path to healthier/healthy eating you must start with the behavior first and then worry about the ingredients. Fish versus fishing, you know? Once a person does actually begin to listen to and understand the nutritional cues their body is signaling then they can start to focus on specific nutrients they need and various ways to get it. It is so difficult to break away from the disordered eating and food associated guilt that I wouldn’t worry about what actual food they are eating yet, they have to start somewhere, ya know? To remove the pretend moral values of food is a near impossibility for some.”

And she got it! It made sense. And it gives me hope that the more people we can explain this stuff to the better our chances of seeing an end to the discrimination and hate…one day. And I know it sucks to read those two words: one day. *sigh* but it’s enough to keep me in the fight! It’s worth it! No one deserves the hate and shame and bullshit that gets flung so freely towards us just for how we look! It’s bullshit and I feel that we need to be more vocal about the specifics on why it’s bullshit! Follow the money trail and you will see what I mean!

I want to nurture our bodies and minds. I want to embrace my fellow fats and let them know that I love them, I value them. I want to keep our allies close! I think we need a very specific and simple Fat Liberation hub where all resources and information and links can be found. Not a blog, mind you, just a resource database type of thing. Something anyone could stumble upon and understand. I want us to create a truly supportive community and branch that out into our local communities. We can do workshops and educational seminars. We can create fun and positive events and encourage activism! And finally, but I think most importantly, we should continue to support one another and encourage each other!

I know this was a bit of a rant, but so be it. This is how my brain works sometimes. I’d love to hear your thoughts. Or you know what? Just let me know how you’re doing! Ha-ha! Thanks for reading! <3

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10 Comments to

“Bit Of A Rant…”

  1. On July 28th, 2011 at 11:37 am Peggy Says:

    I was fine reading this post until I came to this line: “We cannot get to them or even convince them that being fat is not a choice. No more than we can convince many evangelical Christians that being gay isn’t a choice.”

    I find this offensive, as I am a Christian, and I do NOT believe that being gay is a choice. I think that being gay is a burden in this society and there is no way anyone would ever choose that lifestyle.

    You preach about the stereotypes of fat, and yet you slip with a line like this, unwittingly stereotyping “many” Christians. -shakes head-

  2. On July 28th, 2011 at 11:44 am Not Blue at All Says:

    @Peggy: I have nothing against Christians, but the fundamentalist/evangelical/extremist groups that preach hate and violence. I apologize deeply for offending you and for at all insinuating that it is all Christians. I have re-worded that part. I see now that it was very inappropriate. I should have re-read it out loud, as I often do with ranty posts, but in my rush to post it I did not.

  3. On July 28th, 2011 at 11:48 am Twistie Says:

    Sometimes rants are extremely productive. This, I believe, is one of those rants.

    There’s a fine line to walk between getting the word out and hitting your head repeatedly against a brick wall, and we all need to find the place on that continuum we can mentally and emotionally manage. For some, just getting out of bed and not immediately thinking self-harming thoughts is a major victory. Others can bloody their scalps for hours before being ready to stop hitting that wall. But the more of us there are willing to find an active role in the fight, the faster the walls come down.

    And yes, an information hub would be great. Having a specific place to point new people where they can find answers to most of their initial questions not only takes the ‘FA 101A’ aspect off the backs of those who want to move on to deeper activist activities, it also gives us a certain amount of legitimacy in peoples’ minds right off the bat. It looks less like a random bunch of crackpots who can’t agree among themselves, and more like a serious resource for questioning the dominant paradigm.

    Must consider possibilities further.

  4. On July 28th, 2011 at 11:51 am Not Blue at All Says:

    @Twistie: Yes & Thank you! I’m now thinking of coordinating with people and using our collective talents and skills to make some of these things happen. I tend to be a control freak, but I don’t want this to be a me-only operation, ya know? This is something I am thinking we would all need to have input on.

  5. On July 28th, 2011 at 1:10 pm Heather Says:

    It’s a good rant, but I don’t think we should necessarily give up on the chronic dieters… I know many people in the fat acceptance community were once just those types of people. One of the reasons I got so pissed when I read Lessons From the Fat O Sphere was because I knew, I just *knew* that fat was unhealthy and these people were talking about it like it was all fine and dandy?! And yet here I am, an activist for the fat community, for fat rights and acceptance, and for HAES. I think the harder people to reach are the thin haters. The ones who honestly don’t know and can’t fathom what it’s like to live in a fat body. I can tell people that I’ve dieted and starved myself and abused diet pills and none of them will believe me because they’ve never had to go through it. At least fat people have the experience that diets fail on our side.

    That’s the hardest part about activism… for every hundred people who hate you and troll you and whose minds will never ever change, there’s always one or two that you can get through to.. but wading through the rest to get to those couple? It’s exhausting… but it’s what keeps us going- like you said with your friend and intuitive eating.

    There was a study that I read quite a while back about the power of positive thought and how it doesn’t work for people with depression or really low self esteem.. the brain does it’s best to protect already established ideas and beliefs.. when a new idea comes up against an old idea the old idea will almost always be the one to be discarded. That doesn’t mean their mind will never change.. but it sometimes takes a long time because the brain has to establish that new connection.

    @Peggy- she didn’t say Christians, she said evangelical Christians- whole different type. Fundamentalist Christians do indeed believe that gay is a choice and that it can be cured. They’re responsible for keeping gay marriage from being legalized, they’re the ones responsible for DOMA and DADT and they’re responsible for a hell of a lot of abuse of both individuals and entire groups. If you’re offended then you should be telling that to the fundies, not to us.

  6. On July 28th, 2011 at 1:21 pm Not Blue at All Says:

    @Heather: Thank you! For being an activist, for putting yourself out there and for being you! You’re right, maybe we shouldn’t give up on this group of people, but I do find so many debates that spiral into exhaustive poo flinging online that just seems so pointless! It’s like debating pro-choice versus pro-life. Like even considering that fat isn’t inherently bad to some can be like saying there is no Santa Claus or the Easter Bunny to a little kid, ya know? But you’re right, we shouldn’t give up on anyone and just getting the message out there could in fact help people, even if it takes decades to sink in, at least they will have a chance of getting to the truth. Thank you so much for sharing your thoughts on this.
    *I did re-write the part about Evangelical Christians though, I did not intend to offend nor single out anyone. While I agree with what you said, I would rather not distract from the overall point of the rant. =0)

  7. On July 29th, 2011 at 2:00 am Ashley Says:

    No you can’t change the way they think if they don’t want to be open to it, just as they can’t change your mind about anything if you are unopen to it. Just offering my opinion here. I think if people want to change to see how fat can be healthy, they will come to you. Those are the people to focus on. I don’t think it would be right to send a link to a fat acceptance blog to that notorious fat hater at work asking them to see your side of things. It’s not your place. (Not talking to you directly, just “you” as in general). I think an important part of good activism is knowing your audience and knowing that it is not everyone who disagrees with your beliefs. Also accepting that not everyone is going to conform to the way you believe and knowing that they have the right to believe whatever they want. Activism isn’t about preaching to people that don’t want to be preached to in attempt to change their minds. It is about helping the people that want to know more about your cause on their own free will and inspiring those else with open minds enough to do the same. Just a thought.

  8. On July 29th, 2011 at 7:16 am Not Blue at All Says:

    @Ashley: Yes, I agree with you completely. Thank you!

  9. On July 29th, 2011 at 4:39 am Friderike Says:

    @Peggy:
    “I think that being gay is a burden in this society and there is no way anyone would ever choose that lifestyle. ”

    Just want to tell you that I don’t feel being gay is a burden and if it was a choice I would choose it again and again. If I could decide to be straight OR play the lottery and have a 50/50 chance of being gay, I’d play.
    IF there was a choice I would decide to be open to all Genders.

  10. On July 29th, 2011 at 7:16 am Not Blue at All Says:

    @Friderike: Thank you, I feel the same. I was a bit confused by the wording they chose, but I didn’t even want to address it. I appreciate your doing so, though. Thank you!

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