Quick Hit: “Public Fat Shaming is not Good Marketing”
I continue to resist the argument that shaming someone “for their own good” is ever an effective mode of changing behavior. Whether it be teen pregnancy (which is a whole other discussion), or fat shaming. It’s insulting, stigmatizing, and ineffective. To put it simply: you don’t take care of a body you hate, and more to the point, it’s no one’s right to make you hate yourself. As Rebecca Eisenberg says in her brilliant take down of internet trolls: ”Why does it hurt you if I don’t hate myself?”
Of course, there are some people who have a lot to gain from making you hate yourself: the weight loss industry. Fat Heffalump has a great article about being given a weight loss flyer on the street as some sort of targeted marketing campaign, in which she brilliantly takes down the assumption that anything done by the weight loss industry is about helping you feel better:
For some reason, it is believed by many people that weight loss peddlers actually care about us. That they care about our happiness, our health and/or our bodies. They don’t. They care about obtaining our money. They tell us our bodies are not acceptable, sell us a product that does not work, then blame us for failing, and sell us the product again, or a new product that does not work. In Australia alone they make almost $800 million per year. In the US, it’s $66 billion per year. They are taking your money and laughing at you as they watch you blame yourself for their product or service failure.
Don’t stand for that shit. Don’t let anyone dismiss what a horrible act it is to single out a fat person and try to shame them into buying a product. Don’t let the weight loss industry brainwash you into believing that they care about you, or that they are doing anyone a public service by pushing their product on to people who never asked for it in the first place.
All I can say is: Word.