Illegal to be fat: Japanese edition

Some of you may have seen the news that it is now illegal to be fat in Japan. This means having a waistline over 85 centimeters (33.5 inches) for men and 90 centimeters (35.4 inches) for women over 40 years of age.

I’m not sure what the penalties are. I know there are employment penalties, like weight ‘counseling.’ 

What’s most alarming about the article is that it’s screamingly clear this is a case of outright scapegoating. Official admit that fat people are being targeted because the population is aging, and aging-related diseases that have been mischaracterized as caused by fat, like diabetes and heart disease, are going up. So fat people are being targeted, even though this is clearly a statistical issue tied to a changing demographic, and not anything the Japanese public is doing differently or ‘wrong.’ 

My heart goes out to all fat Japanese. I hope your government sees the error of its ways, though it’s incredibly unlikely. 

Support Sara Koffi’s “Class Dismissed”

I was contacted recently by Sara Koffi, a plus-sized, African-American aspiring filmmaker and screenwriter about an eminently worthy film project called Class Dismissed, for which she needs funding. Help Sara say what she wants in her own words (which is the only true “right” way), without having to give up control of the creative process and hence dilute her genuinely size positive, LGBT* positive, sex positive message. Her appeal is below, including a link to where you can donate, which I’ve also included here.

Also note that Sara has a guest post up at Shakesville (published yesterday).

My name is Sara Koffi. I’m a plus sized, African-American aspiring filmmaker and screenwriter. I’m from Memphis, TN and have been “knocking” on Hollywood’s door for the past two years. My artistic focus has always been on creating something that would depict honest experiences.

But…I’ve learned that reality and Hollywood don’t always get along. After getting an offer to present my work in the “right” way (none of that topic, too much of that topic, etc), I decided to go another route. I realized that I’d have to be in charge of the full creative process if I wanted to create something less problematic. Something genuinely hilarious and poignant, that wouldn’t rely on stereotypes for the sake of entertainment (because that’s pretty gross).

So I came up with Class Dismissed.

Class Dismissed is a feature length dramedy about Christy, a plus sized escort and Aubrey, a chronic overachiever with some coming out to do. It follows their college lives a few days before Aubrey’s parents are coming over to visit and before Christy meets a confused conservative type who she maybe kinda’ likes.

I’ve got the background, the ability and the ambition…But not the funds to make this movie happen. Which is why I’m writing you. I only ask from support from the people that want the same thing I do: less problematic entertainment. I want Class Dismissed to be genuinely body positive, genuinely LGBT* positive, genuinely sex positive (no slut shame in my game) and genuinely based on the realities of college.

If you’d like to share this idea, the link is below:

Thank you so much!

Peace and love,

Sara Koffi

Oppressing Me Doesn’t Set You Free

Regarding the recent Chick-Fil-A controversy uncovering the shameful homophobic views of Dan Cathy, Chick-Fil-A’s president:

Yes, a man like Dan Cathy who donates to causes that pathologize sexual preferences he doesn’t like and spins up hate against other people for the — gasp! — crime of loving someone he doesn’t approve of should be protested and called out.

But no, Dan Cathy’s views are not somehow worse since fat people are among the patrons of his business.

And no, fatness doesn’t somehow compound the bigotry of his supporters.

And no, fat bigots who support Dan Cathy aren’t prime targets of protest any more than a thin bigot is.

And no, pointing out that some of Dan Cathy’s supporters are fat shouldn’t be met with a knowing nod or, “Of course they are.”

In other words, fighting ignorance with ignorance means you’re no better than the bigots you’re fighting. Oppressing me doesn’t set you free.

I’ve included several images here of tweets made by famous/influential/sorta-influential people that try to fight homophobia with fatphobia.

Wouldn’t it be more timely to showcase a study on how damaging homophobia is? Oh no wait, fat people are bad always, acceptable targets always.

Indirect death threat #1.

Fatties marrying is gross and reprehensible and is totally an argument against straight-only marriage somehow (though I’m pretty sure there are like, loads of gay fat people) #1.

Indirect death threat against fatties #2, also implying they’re stupid/unevolved.

Ha, cuz only fat people eat fast food and fat bigots are worse than thin bigots. Get it? So that’s why saying fat bigots is a zinger. Fat. Faaaat.

Hahaha fatties and their diet Coke, get it? This person is apparently a comedian, and she can’t come up with anything less shopworn than that?

Hahaha, fatties can’t stand for things, they don’t have values or opinions. They’re just obsessed with food, food, food. Not only are you a bigot, you’re a mcfatty fat bigot with a fat-clogged brain. Fatty!

Wow, way to both hate on fat people, fat gay people, and police gay people’s bodies at the same time. Quinto, I wish you were as logical as the character you play in the movies. Alas…

Indirect death threat against fatties #3. Whew! (can I just ask when death threats against any group are a good way to advance a cause? Anyone? Bueller?)

Who’s “we” here? Did I suddenly become a hivemind with my other fat Americans? Because I didn’t get the memo. Probably because I am fat.

Hurr, they’re fat, hurr!

Here are some excerpts of current top tweets for the “@chickfila obesity

And “chick-fil-a obesity“:

Way not to nakedly scapegoat fat people while you were trying to make your point, guys! Except, that’s exactly what you did.

Thank goodness there’s a Jezebel article by Lindy West on this: I Know You’re Mad at Chick-fil-A, But Stop Taking It Out on Fat People