Before you ask, yes, my choice of this subject to be set against the usual toothsome Rule Five Friday totty was deliberate. This appeared last week from PJMedia’s David Solway: Why Is Fat a Feminist Issue? Excerpt:
According to Gillian Brown in a recent blog post “Why is Fat a Feminist Issue?” from which I take my title, “Fat women are an embodiment of exactly what patriarchal society does not want women to be: visible.” Heft, she implies, is female revenge against a tyrannical masculinity that wishes to erase women from the public square, to obliterate them from view. Her thesis is so counterintuitive as to be visibly preposterous. Men have been promoting the presence of women in all the spheres of public, professional and institutional life for generations, often to their own material disadvantage. Men obviously enjoy looking at women, the more visible the better. Many husbands are quite delighted with their beautiful wives—I know I am—and happy for all the world to look upon them with appreciation. Men in non-repressive cultures are not prone to lock up their women, barricade them in some version of Bluebeard’s Castle or drape them in pup tents.
Brown’s argument becomes even more ridiculous when one recalls that feminists also object to the indigestible horror of catcalling and the malevolent prevalence of the “male gaze,” which would be impossible if women were rendered invisible. You can’t have it both ways but that never stopped a feminist. Not content with glossing over a blatant contradiction, Brown goes on to claim that fat men need not worry since they “are not expected to look aesthetically pleasing”—the perks of patriarchy. The statement is manifestly dishonest. But for Brown and her innumerable congeners, fat is a feminist issue. Fat should not be off-putting. Indeed, fat is fab, if we only knew it.
Brown’s arguments are, of course, utter horseshit.
Here’s the thing, and it’s a thing most rational people understand: Being grossly overweight is unhealthy. It’s often but not always a sign of a lack of self-discipline, and I say that as a guy with the not-too-unusual gut of a middle-aged man who makes his living at a desk. It’s often a sign of a lack of self-discipline and, when so, it’s a sign of lack of regard for one’s own health.
There are no damned “gender issues” involved. Excess weight is as unhealthy for men as for women – maybe more so, since men are more prone to cardiac issues and those are frequently aggravated by overweight. According to the CDC, the risks of overweight include:
- High blood pressure (Hypertension)
- High LDL cholesterol, low HDL cholesterol, or high levels of triglycerides (Dyslipidemia)
- Type 2 diabetes
- Coronary heart disease
- Gallbladder disease
- Osteoarthritis (a breakdown of cartilage and bone within a joint)
- Sleep apnea and breathing problems
- Some cancers (endometrial, breast, colon, kidney, gallbladder, and liver)
- Low quality of life
- Mental illness such as clinical depression, anxiety, and other mental disorders
- Body pain and difficulty with physical functioning
No patriarchy required. Just medical science and a healthy dose of good sense.
The article concludes: As noted, Gillian Brown argues that men believe “women should not take up space.” It seems that one of the ways in which many feminists are determined to fight the patriarchy, trash the ideal of aesthetic beauty, justify the bizarre and renovate the culture in their image is precisely…to take up space.
It’s not space so much as bandwidth. These hysterics aren’t interested in changing the culture of a nation that, by and large, ignores them. They’re just trying for attention.