My Very First Troll.

Oh My.

I didn’t expect it to happen so soon.

But it has.

Probably due to all the press coverage of the Fat-o-Sphere, I’ve garnered a bit of attention, too.

And so, Daniel has kindly pointed out to me, several key items about fatness. He politely suggests the following:

Umm… I don’t mean to be offensive, but honestly, the fact that the large numbers of massively overweight people around you are trying to deal with their obesity by denying that it’s a problem doesn’t change the key issues:
1) being obese, by itself, is extremely bad for your health (diabetes, heart problems, etc)
2) being obese is usually accompanied by being fairly inactive physically, which also has some very bad side-effects
3) obese people often don’t feed themselves right (YES!… sugar is not enough), don’t eat enough fresh, vitamin-full vegetables, which is also really bad for your health

Hmm. All good points, Daniel. Anything that starts off with, “I don’t mean to be offensive,” generally isn’t offensive, at all. I mean, why would you preface anything with such a comment in the first place?

Of course, Daniel, I don’t want to be offensive either, but let me take the time to point out some flaws in your logic. First, being “obese,” in and of itself, is actually not unhealthy. Diabetes, heart disease, and of those other diseases, which may or may not be complications related to weight and lifestyle, are secondary. So therefore, “obesity” is not, in and of itself, unhealthy. Thin people can eat a ton of sugar, eat no vegetables, smoke a lot, and never exercise, and they’ll up their risks of diabetes and heart disease just as much as a fat person who engages in the same behaviors. And that’s what those things are: behaviors. Fat and thin: those are body types, not behaviors. We shouldn’t judge people for body type, skin color, race, class, etc., etc. Truthfully, we shouldn’t judge people for behaviors, either, because when it comes right down to it, it’s actually none of our business what other people do with their own bodies.

It’s amazing how many blogs written by fat people have the same delusional theme: “ooh, I’m not fat because everyone else is fat around me” or “I’m ok with being fat, really I am” or “I’m happy with my 400 pounds of fat, if you’re not happy that’s your problem”. Wake up folks! The problem with being fat is not the way you feel – it’s the way it destroys your body.

The way you feel about your fatness has NOTHING to do with it. If your body fat percentage is in the “obese” norm, you are FAT. And you are getting all the health issues associated with it.

Ah, Daniel. I see now we are devolving into your true hatred of fat people. Your logic has gotten worse, and you have referred to my favorite argument of the thin-community about the horrors of fatness: the spectre of the 400 pound fat person.

First, I am not sure that anybody in the fat community is denying they are fat. Um, that seems to be a consensus among us all: Yep, we are a bunch of fatty fat fatties, even if we don’t agree with the way the health care industry classifies our fatness in terms of BMI and other scales of fatness. But all of us here? Fat we are.

I won’t bother addressing in full your hysteria about the health problems you insist each of us is marching toward collectively due to our fatness. I don’t know. It seems to me we are individuals. There’s a bunch of links on my page that will address those, if you enjoy reading. I don’t know. It seems to me people are individuals, with individual propensities towards diseases, based on genes, lifestyle, environmental factors, among other complex considerations. Saying All Fat People Will Get Diabetes is like saying All White People Will Get Cancer, or All Gay Men Will Get AIDS.

And let’s even go with the argument that Fat Is A Risk For Diabetes. Ok, well Smoking Is A Risk For Lung Cancer. Guess what? Not all smokers get lung cancer. Using that argument, you can see that the notion that All Fat People Will Get X Disease is false.

I wonder why, Daniel, you are so bothered by fat people being happy with their body shapes? What about that is so threatening to you? I am not sure that you are genuinely concerned for the health of fat people, as you are concerned that fat people being OK with themselves makes you less OK with yourself. Could it be that a group of people you detest finding peace with their collective body image despite the hatred you spew forth somehow disempowers you?

Getting thinner isn’t hard. Forget about all the fad diets. There are only 3 key, proven vital behaviours to losing weight:
1) weigh yourself every day (including body fat %)
2) have a way of exercising at home
3) eat breakfast every day

Do this from now on (not for a limited period, for the rest of your life) and you can lose weight. When you find you’re not losing weight, eat less or exercise more. Easy.

Hmm Daniel. As a recovering bulimic, I can say that weighing ones’ self every day sounds a little bit … disordered. As for the last part of your wonderful advice, just one question: Is the goal to lose weight forever? So that a person wastes into nothingness?

Because, quite frankly, what if I don’t want to lose weight? What if I don’t want to be nothing?

What would that mean to you, Daniel?

I imagine the prospect of a fat woman who isn’t trying to get thin perpetually is a rather frightening one indeed.

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19 Comments

  1. fillyjonk said,

    January 25, 2008 at 12:13 pm

    Yeah, this is why we have Bingo… they just never have anything new to say, and they’re never even responding to anything that anyone has actually SAID. They seem to have a great time throwing fallacies at straw men, so who am I to enforce critical thinking on them, but why give them the mental or blog space?

    (I mean, I understand why you’re making this post — first troll is a big deal. But I just think it’s hilarious that they feel they’re entitled to having their comments published.)

  2. erin said,

    January 25, 2008 at 12:17 pm

    Awesome response to your troll. You should keep him in a terrarium as a pet.

  3. JeanC said,

    January 25, 2008 at 12:21 pm

    Great post 🙂

    Trolls, gotta love them. Then again, why bother, tho they do serve a purpose of being entertaining in a way. I have found if you laugh at them long enough they crawl back under their rocks let the rest of us continue living the lives they so obviously need.

  4. vesta44 said,

    January 25, 2008 at 12:41 pm

    Critical thinking is not a strong point of trolls. All they want to spew is hatred and the fallacies perpetrated by the so-called researchers in the pockets of big pharma/diet industry/medical community who want to make tons of money off the body discontentment that they have been fostering for years. Sometimes you can educate a troll, but most times you need to be Billy Goat Gruff with them.

  5. coyote said,

    January 25, 2008 at 1:12 pm

    why is EVERY troll on the FA blogs named Dan?

  6. GoingLoopy said,

    January 25, 2008 at 1:18 pm

    why is EVERY troll on the FA blogs named Dan?

    Maybe it’s all the same troll! Which would actually be funny.

  7. thoughtracer said,

    January 25, 2008 at 1:31 pm

    A troll bot.

  8. Shinobi said,

    January 25, 2008 at 1:52 pm

    *Is fat at Dan. FAAAAT*

  9. littlem said,

    January 25, 2008 at 2:09 pm

    You know it’s bad when they start with “Ummm”.

    You know it’s worse when they say “I don’t mean to be offensive”.

    ‘Cause you KNOW then they’re going to be offensive.

    ‘Cause they’ve been that way since BIRTH.

    😀

  10. Nemohee said,

    January 25, 2008 at 2:50 pm

    Thoughtracer, I bow to your excellent response.

    I’ve currently had several people give me the “Fat causes X disease” argument to my face. What stuns me is they display their bias without a stammer, stutter, or blush; as though what they are saying is stone-cold fact. It’s something that no one (except the most prejudiced bigots) would dream of saying in a conversation about race or gender.

    And you can’t argue with them. When I remark that I do not have diabetes, my cholesterol is low, and my blood pressure is fine (with no indication that any of them are getting into the elevated range), every single one of them has stated something to the effect of “if you don’t now, you will;” as though one day I will be walking along the street, and then *BAM* my blood pressure and sugar will sky rocket, and my cholesterol will clog my arteries so badly I will need an immediate triple bypass surgery.

  11. thoughtracer said,

    January 25, 2008 at 3:03 pm

    You know, I didn’t really know what I was going to do with My Very First Troll. I work in a field where we do a lot of behavioral interventions, so I thought that ignoring it would be best. But then, I thought, well, maybe on this occasion, since I was never strong enough to say anything the 1,000 other times in my life, I will write back to this, My Very First Troll.

    Because he isn’t my very first troll.

    He is only one of a million in my life. He is my parents. He is people I have dated. He is teenagers who have heckled me from cars. He is salespeople at stores. He is kids who made fun of me in school. He is the hysterical media. He is the dominant culture which says my worth as a woman is measured by the weight I carry, or rather, don’t carry. He is all of those things.

    Umm, I don’t mean to be offensive, but, thank you Daniel, for giving me an opportunity to respond back to the 400-pound spectre of hatred that has been following me around my entire goddamned life. I am eternally grateful.

  12. stefanie said,

    January 25, 2008 at 3:21 pm

    I think I get the Troll Who is Everywhere named Daniel. He probably sees himself as some kind of “Daniel in the [fat women] lions’ den,” where he “shuts the [fat women’s] lions’ mouths. Typical trollish delusion of grandeur.

  13. Cindy said,

    January 25, 2008 at 3:53 pm

    My evolving response to the “you’re fine NOW but you’ll get hit with disease SOMEDAY!” comment:

    My spouse is a physician assistant who works in a family clinic. She said the vast majority of elderly people in her care are on hypertensive meds, cholesterol lowering meds and that a smaller group of elderly people are on both AND insulin.

    She said some are fat and some are thin.

    Makes ya wonder if the causes of hypertension, high cholesterol and diabetes MIGHT be in SOME part age related.

    And the shrill screams of “you’re gonna die of disease someday” are weird to me. Seriously, pick up any metropolitan newspaper and read the obituaries of people ages 75 and up. A fair few of them mention “he/she died after a long illness.”

    The longer we live, the more likely the cellular processes will break down and allow for disease. Right?

    Why do fat people have to carry the burden of eliminating the RISK of disease by living miserable, puritanistic lives?

  14. thoughtracer said,

    January 25, 2008 at 4:01 pm

    Thank you. Thank you. Thank you. I think the biggest risk factor in disease and death is: LIFE. Because what does LIFE lead to? DEATH! Yes people! It is true! If you are alive, you are going to die someday! It is actually inevitable! And the longer you live, the more likely you are going to be stricken by something like heart disease, Type 2 diabetes, stroke, cancer, etc, because your body wears out just from having been alive.

  15. JeanC said,

    January 25, 2008 at 4:48 pm

    As I have stated elsewhere, being born is 100% fatal. No one gets out of this life alive 😀

  16. Ducky said,

    January 25, 2008 at 5:54 pm

    I’m jealous. You get way better trolls than I do.

  17. thoughtracer said,

    January 26, 2008 at 11:25 am

    We can share!

  18. N said,

    January 26, 2008 at 1:50 pm

    WTF is that troll wearing? amazing.

  19. thoughtracer said,

    January 27, 2008 at 12:57 pm

    It is a mermaid. From the sea.


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