Fat and Not Afraid

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Perils of Propaganda

May 14, 2012

 Guest post by FatFox!

"The essence of propaganda consists in winning people over to an idea so sincerely, so vitally, that in the end they succumb to it utterly and can never escape from it."  Joseph Goebbels

  

Before I began writing this post.  I went to the dictionary to look up the meaning of propaganda.  Here is what I found:

propaganda: (N) information, ideas, or rumors deliberately spread widely to help or harm a person, group, movementinstitution, nation,etc.

From everything that I have seen, the propaganda of the "<gasp>OBESITY EPIDEMIC!!<pearl clutch>" has been lauded under the flag of "help" when in fact it is clearly anything but.  The thing I have been wondering about this week, after reading the fresh new wave of bullshit being spearheaded by The Weight of the Nation documentary, is "what would happen if we truly believed the shit their peddling?"

Lets imagine for a moment, a nation in which all fat, obese, super obese, sort-of-overweight people, and generally dissatisfied folks, agreed that obesity is the problem plaguing our nation and deserves to be eradicated.  What exactly would that look like? 

  • Would there be an economic cut-off point for those who were affected by the anti-obesity measures?:   Imagine someone like Rush Limbaugh, being told by the government or his employer that he is required to eat 1,200 calories per day and exercise a minimum of 30 minutes each day until he reaches his ideal weight.  Or perhaps imagine Arnold Schwarzenegger (since technically he is obese).  Do you think people would have faith in a governor of a state who is not even allowed to choose whether he gets to have a snack or not?
  •  Would there be racial considerations?: Would the government provide exactly the same anti-obesity measures to African-Americans? Mexican-Americans? African-Americans? Would the poor receive the same health care as the rich?  Obviously anti-obesity is ONLY relative to health, so clearly we would have to have government provided health care.  Would senators receive the same Anti-Obesity health care as welfare recipients? 
  • Would we allow genetic manipulation?:  If we could guarantee genetically that a child would never be fat, would we take those steps in-utero? Would we abort a child who had the potential to become fat? Would we accept austerity measures and sterilize anyone who has not conquered their obesity by a certain reproductive age?  Would sterilization be equal among men and women?

I could obviously continue with this list, since there are a myriad of ways in which the anti-obesity measures would affect the population.  But I'm hoping that these examples give enough insight into the workings of my brain.  If we aren't asking ourselves these questions, then really what is the point of the obesity epidemic hoopla? Oh yes, I know what the point is! It's to allow people a moral distraction -  A moment to breathe and say "Well thank God at least I'm not fat!!"  We don't have to worry about our environmental impact because hey! at least I don't have as big of an impact as those fat-fattersons!  We don't have to worry about the epidemic of child abuse/incest because OMG DID YOU SEE THE FATTY EAT THAT BURRITO?! <shudder>.  We don't have to worry about equal rights for all individuals regardless of gender, sexual orientation, race, because " ZOMG A FAT PERSON IN A BIKINI!!!" Clearly this takes presidency. 

Have we really stopped to ask ourselves, exactly what the "Obesity Epidemic" people want?  Some may say "personal responsibility!!" because fat is clearly a personal choice.  But have we stopped to ask ourselves exactly what that "personal responsibility" entails?  Who is going to enforce this personal responsibility? Our employers? Senators? The President? Who?  Who exactly will be subject to the enforcement of personal responsibility?  And if we're talking about responsibility without enforcement, then we should be asking ourselves what cost this propaganda has.  If there is no measure to back up this hysteria, then these articles are just inflammatory.  They encourage hatred and violence towards a specific group of people.  Why is that okay?
 


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