You may or may not know this but I am 100% bi-sexual. Me and a girlfriend of mine got into a debate about what is pretty and what is not. So as I often say now, "OFF TO THINK ATHEIST INTERWEBS TO ASK RATIONAL PEOPLE!"
So here I am with a few questions:
I will be at work most of the day but I will be able to read most of your responses on my phone.
It is not slam dunk, as you say. Some that we may consider overweight could be healthier than thinner peers. However, the fact is that weight is generally a good indicator of overall and long term health.
I think you are missing the point in all of this.. It is clearly not healthy to be obese, but this is somewhat of a moot point as I would assume this is a fairly agreed upon point. It is less than desirable to be overweight vs normal weight, and moving from being overweight to within normal bounds is not exactly outside the reach of anyone.
Your comparison between a slender person who has shitty dietary (and other) habits vs an overweight person with good habits is not a valid comparison. You have to compare ceteris paribus (all else equal) for validity, and if you do so it is clear than anyone within normal weight will have better health than someone who is overweight (and substantially better than an obese person). In addition, I don't believe i.e. smokers are exactly heralded as paragons of good health either (full disclosure: I do smoke on occasion).
Weight issues tend to be more focused on by females, though one has to take into consideration that females get these issues not because of males since the female reference groups is other females. In addition, the fashion industry is generally innovated by homosexual males which use models that resemble young men's bodies, an ideal impossible for females to comply with. Indeed, most males prefer at least some 'meat on the bones' (I can easily add more euphemisms) on women since this is a sign of higher probability of reproductive success.
Tying it back to the picture, that woman does not have a weight issue. Her body is certainly within the normal range, especially considering that she is probably holding her breath for the photo, it's been 'shoped, and thus appearing more slender than she really is. An anorexic body would have much more visible ribs and her bellybutton would not be squished laterally.
I am not clearly missing the point of all of this and you would realize that if you had a better idea of the full conversation. Since you have clearly not read all of my posts in this discussion, I am not inclined to address what you posted since you don't seem to understand the position I have put forth collectively within just the past few pages of discussion. Two posts only, really, and this was the short one. I don't want to recap every previous point in order to make a point later on in an ongoing conversation. It would be tedious and time consuming.
It was @Cecilia :)
It was @Cecilia :)
Well, that explains why it made little sense as a reply to me. Also, it explains this egg on my face. Mea culpa and apologies.
You're making the point I've been trying to make. To be fat and healthy is WORK. Eating right, getting adequate exercise. So, to be fat and healthy isn't a natural state, it's an artificial one. It's far easier (and thus more natural) to be healthy by maintaining a "healthy" weight, which coincidentally results in a person who tends to be closer to accepted standards of attractiveness. It is overweight people or people obsessed with food and body image who believe that "thin = healthy." Of course, as I've observed many times, many of those same people see a thin person and almost automatically assume anorexia or pre-anorexia, whereas many thin people also have to put up with judgments about them based on their body type. I recently witnessed a discussion about this topic in another forum in which several of the female participants who happen to be thin/slender rattled off comments about their weight that others in their lives had felt bold enough to put forward. While perhaps more women fight to keep weight off, there are indeed women who can't seem to put it on.
I do not think that it is WORK to enjoy healthy food and enjoy moving my body at all...being able to do these things is, in fact, one of the supreme pleasures of life!! Unfortunately, "fat" people are too often "told" that they are not entitled to these pleasures (unless, of course, they are doing so with grim purpose and intent to lose weight). Also, a person can maintain a "healthy" weight (whatever that means) and still not actually be healthy because they eat a crap diet, don't exercise, smoke etc yet the fat person who adheres to a healthy lifestyle is judged (or pitied or fretted over) while the thinner person who adheres to a crap lifestyle gets a pass.
Cecilia, while it may be "possible to be overweight and healthy," I'm sure that being overweight and healthy involves both exercise and attention to what one eats. Most overweight people get minimal exercise at best and eat whatever the f*** they want.
Most overweight people are not nearly as healthy as they could be, and most are probably not particularly healthy at all.
All cultures have idealized images, physical and otherwise, which not everyone can meet. This is by the nature of an ideal, paradigm, or standard. They will always be with us and always beyond the reach of most. Today, slenderness may be part of the ideal. In the past, being plump ("rubinesque") was the standard, and I'm sure the women who were naturally thin due to their genetics felt pressure then.
There is little point in wasting efforts complaining about something which isn't going to change. Another approach needs to be taken. I advocate that of making girls stronger rather trying to isolate them from ideal images.
Yes and you make them stronger by teaching them to value themselves and their bodies just as they are and for what they can do, not what they look like. And we absolutely do not do that in this culture, indeed, quite the opposite and it is fact that images girls see in the popular culture impact how they feel about themselves which impacts in turn how they value themselves which impacts how willing they are to take care of themselves and respect themselves, etc., etc. Remember the "doll test" that was cited in Brown v. Board of Education? http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alvin_F._Poussaint I know it is counter-intuitive but these images of the ultra thin ideal are not only linked to anorexia (where women/girls become dangerously thin) but also to bulimia (where women/girls may maintain a "normal" weight but become dangerously malnourished) and to compulsive overeating (which leads to overweight and malnourishment). I agree you can't "isolate" girls (or any of us) from destructive images (which is precisely the problem) but you can speak out against these images and how harmful they are and demand new images that celebrate all women and girls regardless of how closely they conform to an impossible ideal. These images are part of the problem of why girls do not feel strong in our society and so they absolutely must be complained about: silence = acquiescence.
Then we agree. It has to be done "at the girl" end by helping girls be strong enough to resist these forces since the forces aren't going away.