Friday, August 9, 2019

Fat Friday #12: How to get Fat Acceptance Completely Wrong

Cie takes a step back and leaves today's Fat Friday post to her politically incorrect alter-ego, Sly Fawkes.

I recently read a rant by a young (thin) woman proclaiming that fat liberation shouldn't intersect with feminism because fat liberation is all about desperate fat women wanting to force men to think they are beautiful.
First, no.
Second, what the fuck?

This young lady has confused Ashley Graham curvysexalicious (yes, Ashley actually referred to herself that way) Fun Empowered Free the Nipple Liberal Feminism For Plus Size Babes with real fat liberation or fat acceptance. Sadly, I thought she had something on the ball before she wrote this steaming, hateful pile of nonsense.

Real fat acceptance has fuck all to do with wanting to force men to think fat women are beautiful.
Most of us fat women give this many fucks about having some contingent of pea-brained douchebros think we're beautiful.

Here is what fat acceptance is actually concerned with, and I think these issues are very much feminist concerns. While fat men suffer too in a thin-centric society, there is additional pressure placed on fat women for not conforming to misogynistic and unrealistic standards of hotness. Racism and classism also come into play in the thinness equates with beauty while fatness equates with slovenliness, commonness, and undesirability screed. The Slender White Woman is held up as the ideal by women's magazines. Men's magazines also hold up the Slender White Woman as the ideal, while insisting that she also have impossibly large yet perky breasts.

Fat acceptance is concerned with the fact that fat people tend to not receive adequate medical care. Doctors prescribe weight loss for every problem imaginable while not listening to the patient's actual concerns. Since women's concerns tend to be dismissed as it is, this goes doubly for fat women. The case of Ellen Maud Bennett may seem extreme but is sadly far more common than people realize. 

Ellen was a 64-year-old Canadian woman who died from ovarian cancer, which could have been treatable if it had been addressed in its early stages. She had been feeling ill for years, but doctors never did anything beyond telling her to lose weight. Shame on all of them. They should all be held accountable for her death.

In my own case, I did not have a pelvic exam for close to thirty years, in part due to past sexual trauma, in part due to fear that I would be shamed for my body. I only went to an OB/GYN within the past two years because of post-menopausal bleeding, which turned out to be due to simple endometrial hyperplasia with normal cells. As this only raises the risk of endometrial cancer to 1.6 percent greater than the risk for someone who has no hyperplasia, I have opted against a hysterectomy (the recommended procedure) at this time. If I had presented with complex hyperplasia or abnormal cells, which raise the risk of endometrial cancer to 36% greater than a woman with no hyperplasia, I would have had the hysterectomy.

The appalling treatment of larger people, particularly larger women, by the current size-shaming medical system should definitely be a feminist concern. I give no fucks if some dumb dudebro finds me attractive. I want my health concerns to be taken seriously when I seek medical treatment. I do not want medical professionals to dismiss me as either "hysterical" because I am a woman or a pariah because I am fat.

Fat people tend to be passed over for promotions, that is if they are hired at all. Discrimination against fat applicants means that fat people are more likely to live in poverty. Given that women already have strikes against us when seeking employment, fat women face even greater discrimination. I would say that is very definitely a feminist concern.

Just because a small number of plus-size models describe themselves using dumb terms like "curvysexalicious" and a few (understandably) angry big women make the regrettable error of posting "real women have curves" or "only dogs want bones" types of memes does not erase the real goals and real concerns of the fat acceptance/fat liberation movement. By the way, don't post those memes. They're ignorant. Nobody should be shamed for their body type. And you can refer to yourself as "curvysexalicious" if you want, but I'm gonna give you the side-eye if you do.

All fat people face stigmatization and discrimination. Fat women get an extra helping of discrimination for not adhering to arbitrary and unrealistic standards of beauty. These are absolutely issues which should be addressed by the feminist movement. Unless feminism is only for thin women, which is what some "feminists" seem to be implying.

Also, the assertion that fat liberation only concerns itself with forcing men to think fat women are beautiful makes me wonder if the individual making that (inane) statement is unaware that there are fat women of the non-straight persuasion. 

Guess there have never been any fat bisexual or lesbian feminists. Nope, can't think of a single one.

Radass Badass Andrea Dworkin (26 September 1946 - 9 April 2005)
Apparently a figment of fevered feminist imagination.

As Andrea Dworkin once said, "if an ignoramus you are, speak you should not."
Oh, wait. That was Yoda.

~Sly Has Spoken~

Image copyright juliahenze

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