“Obesity”, or Fuck Off, Pagan Concern Trolls

I’ll admit I’ve been a little absent from the pagan blogosphere this past week (and other blogospheres; I think my brain is still camping out in the woods). But I haven’t been oblivious, and today I actually sat down to read a few of the posts floating around about the “epidemic” of “obese pagans”.

I’m not surprised Peter Dybing, who has proved himself to be an asshole to me in the past, writes a post in which he proves he’s not a doctor that is tellingly named “normal” in the URL (EDIT as of August 14th, 2012 — Dybing has deleted his original post for some unfathomable reason; Google cache still has it up and so here is a screencap) — so wait, you’re saying that I’m not normal because I’m fat? Well thank all the gods for that! Normal is just a setting on the dryer to me.

One of the most valued principles within the Wicca community is that all bodies are sacred and beautiful. This is so engrained in our culture that that we have developed a collective amnesia concerning the health affects of obesity.

Ah, yes, those health affects! Wait, don’t you mean effects? Next time just use the word impact; it means the same thing. (I realize correcting grammar makes me look childish, but if you’re going to talk about how unhealthy I am without any proof or medical knowledge — without knowing, frankly, a godsdamned thing — then you can at least do it with proper grammar. You owe me that much.)

So. Those health effects of obesity. Well, it’s true that a lot of health problems have been connected to obesity. What’s not true is that obesity causes them. Correlation does not equal causation — come on, we learned this in elementary school. (Or, at least I did, but that was in Canada, and before No Child Left Behind.)

There’s only one health problem that obesity does indeed cause — just one. Want to know what it is?

Social ostracizing and hatred from fellow human beings, leading to depression, isolation, and self-destructive tendencies. 

And even then not all obese people suffer from it. Some of us just have it on a day or two, and are fine the rest of the time. Still more of us contemplate suicide because of how badly we’re treated by the people around us — and yes, I was one of them.

Granted, I have PTSD and other mental problems, but I’d be lying if I said I’d never contemplated suicide because I was tired of being treated like dirt because of my size.

So yeah, I guess you’re right, Dybing! I should have just lost the weight and my mental health would have suddenly improved! Why didn’t I think of that? It’s so simple! 

He goes on to say:

Over the past ten years I have had many discussions about this issue with my partner after attending Pagan gatherings. In our private moments we have felt safe to express our concern to each other about this nearly endemic problem in our community. We have observed multiple individuals suffer from obesity and have read the statements of sympathy to their communities and families upon their passings.

Glad to know that up until now you’ve only felt safe to discuss other people’s bodies and health behind their backs, Dybing. That’s fucking classy.

Tell me, in that observation of people suffering from obesity that you mention — did you actually ask these people if obesity made them miserable? Did they actually tell you that? Or did you just come to this conclusion after staring at them for uncomfortable periods of time?

Also, how many pagans have actually died because of their obesity? In which the doctor opened up the body afterwards and said “Yep, it was the fat that killed her — see how the adipose tissue forms fingers that snake around the larynx?” I’d like a number, here, please. And proof.

Of course, I need to mention here that the reason all this fathate and fatphobia is going around the pagan blogosphere right now is because of the death of a “young elder”, whatever that means, in our ‘community’. This person was overweight, and he died of cardiac arrest.

Don’t get me wrong — my sympathies go out to this man’s family, and to everyone who was affected by him. I’m not here to speak ill of the dead. 

Neither, it seems, is Dybing — but that doesn’t stop him from co-opting the tragedy to pursue his own personal vendetta against fat pagans. 

Or anyone else. I know I seem like I’m singling out Dybing here, but that’s only because when I read his blog I saw red and just had to comment on his statements. Like this one:

 A bright light has been extinguished in our community and I cannot help but wonder if I carry some responsibility as a result of having ignored this issue, indeed have we as a community created a situation where we all share in some small measure of culpability?

I’m going to make this really clear for you, Pete: OUR BODIES, OUR BUSINESS. This applies to us fatties, too, not just to skinny folk. And I swear to the gods if you ever come up to me and tell me I need to lose weight because you’re “concerned about my health”, no jury would convict me for what I do to you. 

He then lists a bunch of DID YOU KNOW? “facts” about obesity, including this gem: “Obesity is the #2 cause of preventable death in the United States.

According to whom? I can’t find any actual proof of this outlandish statement; just its repetition on several site that are “dedicated” to “making people healthy.”

The fact is, we can’t celebrate the life of someone upon their passing without commenting on their health — if they’re obese. If they’re not obese, most people who didn’t know them will just talk about how tragic it is, how senseless, yadda yadda — never mind if they passed because they smoked too much, or drank to excess, or never had their teeth looked at because they couldn’t afford dental insurance (not sure if you know this, but bad teeth can actually lead to serious health concerns, such as cardiac arrest).

We have no idea if the cardiac arrest that killed David Grega was related to his apparent obesity or not. Maybe heart problems run in his family and this would have happened anyway. Maybe he had a cavity that had gone unchecked for long enough. We have no idea, because we’re not doctors, and more importantly we’re not David’s doctors. 

But no, we have to get bogged down in his weight, and how that was a health concern, co-opting this man’s death to talk about the “epidemic” of obese pagans.

Do you have any idea what shitty human beings that makes us? 

Congratulations, fat-hating Pagans: you’ve just proven to the gods that you’re not worthy.

(Oh, and by the way — this doesn’t just apply to pagans. This happens every time a fat person dies in the mainstream culture we’re all a part of, too. I just happen to be commenting on the pagan aspect of it.)

On that note, I’m heading up to visit my mom for a few days. We’re going to eat healthy, and walk the dog — EVEN THOUGH WE’RE FAT, OMGS, AND THEREFORE HORRIBLY UNHEALTHY NO MATTER WHAT WE DO.

Fattingly yours,

Other posts on the subject: 

75 Comments


  1. As usual, Morag, you’re fucking awesome. Thank you for being you.

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  2. I was wondering a bit where the fatphobic firehose was being launched from, given that there was some kind of upswing in handwringing, pearl-clutching, and tragic wailing from people who clearly don’t know shit. I guess, thanks for the context.

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    1. You’re welcome?

      I wanted to leave it alone, but. Itchy, angry, fat fingers need to type.

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      1. I seriously want to, like, inject everyone with a good solid dose of The Fat Nutritionist and see if something improves. Unfortunately, I suspect the only people who will listen to me about reading her are people who already know this shit.

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  3. You know what’s bothering me almost as much as the fat shaming? How many people (mostly women) feel like they need to justify why they’re fat. I know, this is how shaming works, but still…

    I’m not doing it anymore. Period. I’m fat. It could be because I make “bad” choices. It could be due to genetics, or medical issues, or, or, or… it doesn’t fucking matter. I’m not going to talk about how much or how little I exercise, or how much and what kinds of foods I eat, or what the standard body type in my family is, or whether or not I’m taking medications that contribute to being fat.

    I’m not going to talk about these things anymore because it’s none of anyone’s business. What I will talk about is the general idea that any person (or group of people) thinks they have the right to define how another person should… be.

    I just love how the so called “community” feels like they need to step in and save me from myself. Not just on this issue, but on several others that are popping up in the pagan spaces I frequent.

    I don’t need to be saved from anything, thank you very much! And I won’t be shamed into discussing my personal business and justifying any part of me, my life, or choices to total strangers.

    Ugh, sorry for ranting on your blog. All of this was to say, good job Morag!

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    1. Yes! This! I totally agree with your whole comment.

      And feel free to rant on my blog. This is a rant-friendly space! :)

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  4. First poster beat me to the “you’re Fucking Awesome!” comment!

    I, too, was huffing and seeing red when I read his article, and all of your responses are just what I was thinking.

    Also wanted to mention, that what that nosy fellow dosn’t seem to know, is that it has been found recently that many people, usually ones who are not “fat” on the outside, carry fat on their organs, which, it turns out, is more dangerous than simply being a bit “heavy”. Meanwhile, some of those same assholes walk around shaking their heads in pity at us poor, poor fat folk who need a concerned talking to.

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    1. Thank you!

      That bit about the inner fat on the organs I did not know about. Do you have a study you could point me towards? (I believe you as to the veracity of it; I’m just curious to read the source.)

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  5. I have to admit, I’ve struggled with fat acceptance myself. I’ve been obese my whole life (except for a short time I flirted with Weight Watchers, where I lost the weight but didn’t lose any self-contempt) and it’s really hard not to equate obesity = ugliness = unhealthiness. Despite what my girlfriend tells me it’s really hard for me to feel attractive when all I feel is… well. Fat. That dreaded f-word.

    I feel similar to my initial struggles with feminism, fighting against what society (and my mother :P) taught me from an early age. Oh, of course women are equal, why do we need to fight anymore? Of course fat people are subhuman, why shouldn’t we tell them to lose weight? I make my own assumptions about the fat in my life, assumptions that I should know better than to give into. I think it’s all a matter of exposure and retraining mental habits, though.

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    1. It is, and you are not alone. I struggle with the same stuff. Especially as I realize that my extra fat is NOT helping me, because it’s aggravating the pain I’ve already been in for over a decade. And now with the spinal injury, I really need to build muscle strength/lose some adipose tissue. Which isn’t easy, because exercising kind of, you know, hurts. A damn lot. So, yeah, I get the same sorts of feels when I look at myself naked in the mirror (but NOT, interestingly, when I look at my boyfriend naked — I just find him and all his fat glory incredibly hot; in fact he’s the hottest man on the planet, so far as I’m concerned. But he is unhealthy, and that’s just cause he doesn’t get enough activity and he eats too much junkfood and he never sees a doctor, because he hates doctors or something, ugh I swear ANYWAY DIFFERENT TOPIC).

      Basically, what I have to tell myself is this: no matter whether I feel ugly while fat or not, no matter if I want to lose weight or not, people should treat me like a human being. That’s really the core of Fat Acceptance: treat us like human beings.

      Because you know what? Even IF I am ugly by some objective scale of beauty; even IF I am too fat, and that’s “wrong”: I am still an awesome person. I am so grateful to Holly at the Pervocracy for teaching me this: Beyond Body Acceptance.

      *hugs* to you.

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  6. Is it just me (perhaps conflating his post with some other bit of fail on the subject, though I’ve been mostly trying to steer clear of the fatphobes and concern trolls and such), or is Dybing’s post shorter now than it was when I first read it? There are concepts I’d swear I saw there a few days ago, but they’re not there now.

    Sunflower

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    1. I just checked it over very thoroughly (and engaged by commenting, which I may regret) and no, it’s the same as it was.

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      1. Okay, must have been stuff I failed to avoid elsewhere. Unfortunately, many of those in Pagandom who are compiling link collections are practicing what they fondly believe is “balance”, and have NO CLUE why they might want to be more explicit than, “oh, this appears well-written!” (which oughta go without saying – I mean, if they linked it, it’s kinda redundant to state that they thought it was worth linking) about the content behind any given link. So I’ve seen some awful stuff.

        To make lemonade out of those lemons, it’s at least data on the subculture-specific ways fatphobia (and often other axes of oppression, ableism particularly) manifests. I’ve found subculture specificity to be an important but oft-overlooked thing in social justice spheres (lack of it is why I detest feminists who aren’t geeks, or who are geeky but don’t engage in any way with geek subcultures, trying to critique sexism in geekdom). OTOH, in Pagandom, subculture specificity mostly boils down to the same-old same-old of the self-appointed Pagan Orthodoxy handwringing over all us heretics who are DOIN IT RONG. BT, DT, have worn out several t-shirts over the years.

        Sunflower

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  7. What a hateful and judgmental response to my post. In fact, i adored my obese friend who passed away. That is what got me writing, my feeling of loss. Must be nice to feel so able to judge others and put words into the mouths of others. Real classy language also!

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      1. Shame on you, Morag. Don’t you know that English has a terrible reputation for following other languages down dark alleys, beating them to within an inch of their lives, and rifling through their pockets for loose grammar?

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    1. Mr Dybing,

      I understand that your initial post came from a place of grief over the loss of your friend. I also don’t think you understood at the time what kind of fallout it would have. Whether you like it or not, people have taken your post and run with it in a very ugly direction.

      You’ve basically given the green light for the “greater pagan community” to jump on the fat phobia band wagon. Now, wherever you see this being discussed, phrases like “healthy body, healthy spirit”, “as pagans we should…”, “a pagan’s body should be sacred…” I could go on, but the overall message is that if you’re fat, you can’t possibly be a real true pagan. If you’re fat, you simply aren’t spiritual enough to be a good pagan.

      Add to that the fact that now, in an attempt to deflect some of the judgement, accusation and ridicule coming their way, we have many people, mostly women, feeling like they need to disclose personal information about themselves to justify why they’re fat when it’s absolutely nobody’s business (see my post above).

      We deal with this sort of thing every day from total strangers on the street, so called friends, and even family. We don’t need to deal with it from our spiritual communities. Period.

      You know what they say about power and responsibility? Well, from where I stand, you’ve misused yours. Now it’s time for you to take responsibility for the hornet’s nest you’ve stirred up.

      But, none of this is new information for you. You can choose to stand by what you’ve said and done or you can take a step back, see how this has hurt people and try to make it right. That’s your choice to make. However, don’t expect those of us who have been harmed by this to keep silent.

      We have been put in the position of having to defend ourselves within our spiritual communities. Whether you like it or not, you put us there. If our language is too harsh for you, then I suggest you either stop reading our blogs, or grow a thicker skin.

      All the gods know I’ve had to. When going out means having to listen to total strangers call you an “ugly fat assed bitch”, your skins gets pretty thick.

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      1. While I see and hear the pain inflicted by the wider culture through shaming I do not believe this will ever happen in our Pagan community. We value all bodies..

        This damage done by the wider community has lead to much emotional pain. Individuals see attacks, shaming and ill intent where none exists to to this deep and justified emotional pain, yet the idea that in our community we can not discuss a broad subject such as health, should somehow ignore important information to protect the feeling of those wounded by the wider culture, is to much.

        Our community will never adopt a fat shaming culture, those who see such a thing developing, can look to them selves for where the concern manifests from. I know no Pagans who hate or judge, or make fun of fat people. It just is not a problem in our community and there is no evidence that such a thing will develop.

        What we can all do is attempt to see each others communications as they are intended, take them at face value, add some compassion to the conversation. There is no developing “alternative” pagan culture. No mass off Pagans shaming others on any issue. Frankly I trust that my community will never cross these lines, I wish others had that well deserved trust also.

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        1. “yet the idea that in our community we can not discuss a broad subject such as health, should somehow ignore important information to protect the feeling of those wounded by the wider culture, is to much.”

          You weren’t discussing the broad subject of health. You were discussing obesity, specifically. A subject that isn’t as cut and dry as say, smoking. There are many, many reasons why a person may be overweight that have nothing to do with their choices.

          “Our community will never adopt a fat shaming culture, those who see such a thing developing, can look to them selves for where the concern manifests from.”

          This right here, fat shaming! The implication that it’s our fault you’re “concerned” puts me and people like me in the position of having to explain why we’re fat to total strangers. That’s how shaming works! My health is my business and none of yours. My size has absolutely no bearing on the “pagan community”. I don’t want or need your “concern”. If you must wring your hands in “concern” for my health, please keep it to yourself.

          “I know no Pagans who hate or judge, or make fun of fat people. It just is not a problem in our community and there is no evidence that such a thing will develop.”

          Really? Then clearly you haven’t been following along. Take a look at the comments being made in pagan places all over the internet. They aren’t hard to find. I’ve even listed several of them for you! Shaming disguised as concern is still shaming. Implying that we are somehow spiritually lacking because of our size, is shaming. Hell, there have even been people who have implied that obese pagans are inflicting their bad energy on the entire community! It’s shaming, it’s bullshit, and it’s wrong!

          “There is no developing “alternative” pagan culture. No mass off Pagans shaming others on any issue.”

          You are incorrect. Just in the last few weeks we’ve had pagans being shamed by other pagans for a variety of things. Obesity being only one. Veiling being another. It does happen quite frequently.

          “Frankly I trust that my community will never cross these lines, I wish others had that well deserved trust also.”

          Your community has already crossed these lines. You yourself have crossed this line right here on this blog! Just because you refuse to see it and acknowledge your part in it, doesn’t mean it hasn’t happened.

          This is a waste of time. Clearly you aren’t willing to take any responsibility for your part in all of this. You’ve obviously made the choice to stand by what you’ve done and to ignore the firestorm you’ve created.

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        2. You really should try and read Catherine’s replies to you and take them to heart. Because you have engaged in fat shaming, like she’s said, and you have created a firestorm, like she’s said, and you know what? We fat pagans have a right to be angry with you, and say whatever the fuck we want about it on our own damn blogs. Because the fact is you know nothing about our health. You just know our size, and yet that makes you feel entitled to comment on our health.

          That’s fat shaming, bro. And your post has opened the floodgates for more “concern” posts, for posts that tell us we’re not pagan enough “because obviously we don’t treat our bodies like temples”, or whatever.

          My post is not coming from a place of hate and judgement. You should look in the mirror for that.

          My post is coming from — yet again — being called to do battle against people who are convinced that I’m subhuman because of my size alone. Who are convinced that I obviously know nothing about health because I’m fat, and that they must ride in on their white horses to save me. Who are convinced that my fat is somehow their responsibility.

          You started that fight, Dybing. If you can’t handle the heat, I suggest you stop starting fires.

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  8. No I have not engaged in fat shaming and when asked to provide an example of anyone who has all that is offered is “Concern trolling” That is a load of crap. It is driven by the listeners emotional pain, not the speakers intent. I have never said anything “is anyones fault” again “you implied” is your reading of the situation not my intent. Must we go on, there in no Fat shaming in the Pagan community. You are making up a problem that does not exist due to your fears.

    Your statements would not even pass a basic logic check in a freshman debate class. There is no fat shaming going on in the community. Only a whole lot of people unwilling to take people in their community at their word. Sad to see how mean and judgmental our community can become.

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  9. By the way. Who thinks you are sub human? Where did you get that or did you make it up also because I see no one saying it?

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    1. Wow. So, because you don’t see the problem, it must not exist? It’s all a figment of our collective imagination? We’re making it all up due to our own fears? Did you even bother to read any of the links that people took the time to post on your blog? Have you actually read what people are saying all over the internet about this issue? Have you even tried, for one moment to take a step back and look at this situation from our perspective?

      I don’t think you have. I think you’ve been too busy trying to prove that you’re right, defend your position, and get the last word to hear what people have been telling you!

      For the record, I understand that you’re grieving over the loss of your friend, and I do feel for you. I know how grief can influence how a person communicates, and how they process information from others. I also don’t think that it was your intent to stir up such a hornet’s nest. But now that it’s all hit the fan, hiding your head in the sand and refusing to acknowledge the problem isn’t doing anyone any favors.

      You want more proof? Hmm, so much for taking people at their word… okay, I’ll provide you with more proof via an email if you’re willing to take this seriously and stop accusing us of making it all up. If you’re not willing to do that then, yes, it is “Sad to see how mean and judgmental our community can become.”

      Can I email you through your blog?

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      1. Catherine, I’d like to say how continually impressed I am at your response to this. You’re being quite eloquent, expressive of your emotions but at the same time communicating a valid point. Gold star, friend.

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        1. Thank you Daniel, but clearly this isn’t going anywhere. So, I’m done with it. Maybe someone else will have better luck explaining why this a problem for us.

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        2. I’d like to echo Danny’s sentiments, here, Catherine. Your comments have been amazing and very much appreciated.

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      2. Yes you can e-mail me at the address listed on my blog. For the record I have followed 12 threads on this subject. Have read hundreds of comments, mostly supportive, but also many attacking in a personal way. What I have only seen once, is someone making a statement that is shaming. I jumped this persons case and expressed how out of line it was. Please do not send me lots of links that you see as shaming, that others see as a discussion, etc. I am not interested in being drawn into the deconstruction of others comments to find fault. I am interested in where all these accusations of people shaming others in our community comes from. Frankly, the shaming has come from the community that is opposed to this discussion being open. Frankly, I have been called a bigot, woman hater, someone who hates all fat people, stupid, ignorant, an ass hole etc.

        All of the above comes from those who profess that there is shaming going on in the community. Sure send me the evidence, if it exists.

        Consider what would of happened if someone younger in their relationship with the Goddess had brought this subject up. Frankly ,the reaction from a small number of individuals could have drove the individual from the community. What I have experienced is hateful actions and speech from a few individuals, posts written with little respect for logic, or evidence and a great fear of shaming that has driven individuals to become the very thing they say they oppose.

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        1. “Please do not send me lots of links that you see as shaming, that others see as a discussion, etc. I am not interested in being drawn into the deconstruction of others comments to find fault. I am interested in where all these accusations of people shaming others in our community comes from.”

          Well, if you don’t want links to specific comments, if what I (as a technically obese person), consider to be shaming isn’t of interest to you, and you won’t except the examples I’ve already given you as proof, then there’s no way I can show you where the shaming is coming from.

          Alright then. I guess we’re done here.

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          1. They came from the American Heart association, for which I am an instructor.

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    2. When you continually refer to fat people as if we have no agency, as if we know nothing about health or our bodies, and as if you have to save us from ourselves, you are treating us as less than adult humans who are capable of making our own decisions and, you know, knowing stuff about our bodies.

      Thus, subhuman. Or like children, if you like, and many people seem to think children are less than human.

      Also, since you seem intent on ignoring the question in your own blog’s comments but continuing to hang out here, I’ll ask you again: do you have any legitimate sources for the “facts” at the end of your blog post?

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  10. First, Mr. Dybing, let me say that I’m very sorry for the loss of your friend. I didn’t know him personally beyond a few online interactions, but I have a lot of respect for his contributions to the Pagan community.
    BUT.
    I’m fat. The only time I’ve ever been a socially acceptable weight was on a diet of one can of Slim-Fast and one meal replacement bar a day (a total of approximately 500 calories), vomiting up most of it, swimming laps at the local pool until I was literally unable to get out of the pool under my own power and had to be pulled out, because I was so horrified at the look of my body. I dropped a lot of weight that way, but it took me years to undo the damage to my health. I still have digestive issues from the acid damage to my esophagus from purging that way, and there are still occasions when I feel so guilty about eating (not even eating junk, but eating at all) that I’m tempted to purge.
    Now, on the other hand, after four pregnancies that ended in miscarriage and severe depression, I’ve ended up at 230lbs. At 5’7.5″, that puts me at a BMI of 35.5. I eat a reasonable diet, and I put in about an hour workout three times a week. My doctor’s advice (and I’m pretty sure my doctor knows what he’s doing, being, you know, a doctor) is that with my blood sugar and blood pressure being at levels that would be perfect for someone of a so-called normal weight, the risk associated with my weight is, in my case, less of a concern than the risk of a relapse of my eating disorder.
    So when I’m at a Pagan gathering and have someone tell me I’d be beautiful if I just lost some weight, that hurts. I’ve had fellow Pagans make Omar the Tentmaker jokes about my clothing size. Yes, maybe our reaction to your comments has emotional pain behind it, but your comments, like the ones I got at Pagan Pride Day, poked at that pain. One of the most important lessons I’ve learned is that a person’s perception is hir reality. Whether the insult was intended or not, it existed. Thin people don’t get to tell people what is or isn’t fat shaming, much like white people don’t get to tell minorities what is or isn’t racist. The correct response is, “I’m sorry if I offended you. It wasn’t my intent, and I’ll be more careful in future.” However, prior interactions with you have taught me that you don’t have the emotional maturity to respond that way, and that any response I get from you will be “fuck you for having toes” rather than “I’m sorry I stepped on you.” And for that I pity you.

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    1. Stephy,
      A very intence and emotional story. I would instantly get in the face of any Pagan that said some of the things you cite in your post. Simply put I do not believe discussing an issue is shaming that is the only area where I see us disagreeing. I have never said any of the things you cite and will never and will continue to oppose anyone who does. I do believe all bodies are wonderful, including yours.

      Much has been attributed to me in terms of belief and statements that are not true. I am not even sure where to begin the accusation that I will respond with”….” Not sure where you get that.

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      1. Your original blog post, for one, and the fatphobia lacing most of your comments here.

        Hint: if a bunch of fat people are saying, “Actually, that’s a pretty fatphobic thing to say,” chances are we aren’t LOOKING for reasons to be hurt or angry. We don’t need to.

        Have you ever heard of honest self-examination? Ever considered trying it?

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        1. I have no Fat phobia, no issues with fat people period. You really need to stop making things up. If you need someone to be the poster child for fat phobia please direct your anger to one of the individuals who you site as having made rude remarks about fat people in your posts. They certantly deserve it. Such behavior is unacceptable.

          I have not said one negitive thing about fat people, period.

          And yes I have a daily practice that included looking at my self. Frankly where the breakdown seems to be is in the very “high school” idea that “if I was really listening, I would agree with you”. I saw this in my mental health job. Such notions are not realistic. Sometimes people of good intent just disagree with you, Happens to me all the time, I have no need to judge them or lable them. Maybe a little self examination could help you get a realistic grip on it being OK when people disagree with you. Really you don’t have to judge those who don’t see it your way, you can just accept that they have a differant opinion. It is part of compassion based belief, try it you might like it.

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          1. Frankly where the breakdown seems to be is in the very “high school” idea that “if I was really listening, I would agree with you”

            No. I think if you were really listening, you’d listen.

            You have been fatphobic, in your post and in your comments. You can live in denial all you want, but your comments and your post have been incredibly hurtful to the people you profess to have no issues with at all! Except that we’re so terribly unhealthy, because we’re fat, and you’re a doctor, so you can judge someone’s health just by looking at them! Right?

            What if I were to come up to you, Pete — I can call you Pete, can’t I? Seems we’re familiar with each other, now that you’re making jabs at my mental health in the comments section of my blog — what if I were to come up to you and say “Dude, I’m worried about your health. You’re too skinny. It’s obvious you’re not eating enough. Are you anorexic? Have you been checked for hormonal imbalance? Seriously, it’s not okay to be this skinny. I know it’s a HUGE TABOO to talk about health in the pagan community, but, hey man, I’m just worried about you. You’re too skinny; it can’t be healthy. Did you know skinny people DIE? All the time? Especially skinny PAGANS? They DIE, man. It’s because they’re SKINNY.”

            Obviously I’m just showing concern! There’s no thinphobia there, is there? (Thinphobia is being used sarcastically here, Pete. It’s not an actual thing. Just so you know.) Nope, I’m just concerned about your health. Because we’re both pagans, and obviously that gives me the right to comment on your size and what you put into your body. Because if you’re too thin, that reflects badly on pagandom.

            Now reverse it. Everything I just described is what you did to fat pagans.

            Sometimes people of good intent just disagree with you

            This article is relevant to your interests..

            Maybe a little self examination could help you get a realistic grip on it being OK when people disagree with you.

            Because being okay with people “disagreeing” with me — with me, fundamentally me as a person because I’m too big, you disagree with my fucking existence — means clamming up and never saying anything, lest I offend the menfolk. And offending the menfolk is a HUGE transgression! What was I thinking, with my silly ladybrain and my emotions?

            Right? Being okay with someone “disagreeing” with me means I should shut the fuck up? That’s what you’re saying?

            Ok. Self-examining happening now. Starting scan…beep…beep…beep…BEEP. No, you’re still an asshole, and it’s not simple disagreement. It’s holding up the oppression inherent in our society at large, and the subculture of pagandom.

            Keep rocking that white het cis thin dudebro privilege.

            And for the record, Pete, I will never, ever shut up. You can be sure of that.

            Reply

            1. 1. I never said anyone was unhealthy, you made that up
              2. Never claimed to be a doctor
              3. I have never come up to someone and Said I am worried because you are too fat, and never would.
              4. my disagreement with has nothing to do with body size, never said it did, I just think you are wrong
              5. I have made no comments about gender, you did, thats crazy
              6. I never said you should “shut the F..K UP” in fact I enjoy a good debate. It is you who is attempting to atribute that to me
              7. I have no intrest in silencing anyone, it is you that thinks that.

              It is evident from the above that you do not care to listen to what I have to say, only promote your agenda, 7 instances of attempting to tribute to me intents, thoughts, words or actions that are not mine. If you need to build a monster to oppose , it won’t be me.

              Really your line of logic would not pass muster in a 9th grade debate class, it makes no sence, has no basis in fact, and is outlandish in the extreem. Your opinions about what you think someone means, do not make it so!

              Reply

          2. “I have not said one negitive thing about fat people, period.”

            Actually, you did.

            When you said,

            “Our community will never adopt a fat shaming culture, those who see such a thing developing, can look to them selves for where the concern manifests from.”

            This implies that it’s our own fault that you’re concerned. If that wasn’t what you meant, then please clarify this statement.

            However, if you actually meant that we should look to ourselves because our fear of fat shaming is all in our heads, then you should know that is also incredibly offensive.

            By the way, I still have the proof of fat shaming in the pagan community that you asked for. Though it does contain comments and links that you said you didn’t really want.

            If you’ve changed your mind, I’d be happy to post it here (after I get Morag’s permission), or at my own blog so that I don’t clutter up Morag’s place any more than it already has been.

            The ball is in your court. Do you want to learn something new, and try to understand where we’re coming from? Or, are you going to hold tight to this position and continue to try and silence us? The choice is yours. But, you should know by now that we won’t be silenced so easily.

            Reply

            1. You have my permission to post whatever you need to, Catherine.

              In fact, I’m going to keep comments open past my usual cut-off date so the discussion can continue.

              Reply

              1. Thanks you. This is your place and find it incredibly rude when people think they have the right to say and do whatever they damned well please in someone’s “home”.


  11. Mr Dybing,
    First, I want to be very clear about something. I don’t believe your intent was to make obese people feel guilt or shame. I believe you were speaking from a place of loss and grief, and I am very sorry that you’re in so much pain. I’ve lost many, many people that I love, due to a variety of things. I understand the need to try and do something, anything, to make things better. I really do. However, when you framed this discussion as a community issue, You unintentionally opened the door for the kind of talk that we call shaming.

    In the hope of helping you to understand what we mean when we say fat shaming, I’ve put together a few quotes.

    From the comments section of Star Foster’s post “My fat is my business”

    – David Pollard says, “Though it doesn’t invalidate your premise, “second hand fat” does sort of exist. It works like this: if an individual gains (or for that matter loses) weight, people in their face to face social network will be significantly more likely to gain (or lose) weight. This is probably due to that friends like to eat together, share recipes and diets etc.
    Though we ware all individuals with rights and responsibilities, etc. We are also a social species who are interconnected to each other in ways that we aren’t even consciously aware of sometimes.”

    Really? I’m also making my friends fat? I suppose I should be ashamed of myself.

    A post from The Firefly Chronicles starts out as a discussion about obesity being caused by bad food choices, then tries (and fails, in my opinion) to change the focus to natural foods. However, that doesn’t stop comments like this from being made.

    – Colleen Beaty says, “I am always afraid to bring up topics such as fitness, wellness, and food in any setting, pagan or otherwise, for fear of being accused of things like fat-shaming, or misdirected anger at their situation and/or self taken out on me (it’s happened many times before).

    My attitude now on the matter is a bit defeatist perhaps, or maybe just more selfish? I can’t change how other people choose to eat/live, because it is their body and their sacred temple (or playground!). I can only influence how I choose to eat/live, and respect my sacred temple.

    I am having thinky thoughts, though, that how we treat our bodies is relevant to how we treat Mother Earth. If we can’t respect our bodies, is that why we can’t respect Mother Earth?”

    Please look at this statement. Do you see the value judgements being made here? Fat people are treating their bodies like playgrounds, while she is treating hers as a sacred temple. Fat people have no respect for themselves, so how can they have any for Mother Earth? Hmm… I must be a very bad pagan indeed. Especially if I dare to feel insulted by these value judgements, because then, I’m making her the victim by being angry. Shame on me!

    Then there’s this from Josh W. in response to “Obesity! Crisis! Hits Pagan Community”

    -I know that this isn’t going to win me a lot of friends, and that is totally ok… but after reading this article there are so many things going through my mind. Obesity IS a major health crisis, not only in the Pagan community, but all over the country and the world. Also, this persons’s research is questionable at best. And anyone with any sense knows that the only way to loose weight is to expend more calories that you intake. Dieting is only 1/3 of the solution, exercise is the other 2/3… I believe that we do tend to be more tolerant of a variety of body types in the Pagan community, almost to a fault. But get real people. If we are Pagans, if our goal is to live in harmony with Nature, to live by the example of the natural world, then we need to wake up to the fact that obesity doesn’t exist in the Natural world… The Goddess loves you just they way you are, unconditionally, but She wants you to be healthy and love yourself enough to make the right choices for yourself. And if that means cutting the carbs and hitting the gym… that’s is Her will. ”

    Here we have a pagan proclaiming the will of The Goddess! Shame on me for not living in harmony with nature when all I really have to do is cut the carbs and hit the gym! Bad pagan, BAD!

    And finally, from The Wild Hunt

    – Eran Rathan says,
    “If you don’t take care for yourself first and foremost, how can you care for anything else?”

    “The obvious response to that, I think, is don’t become obese.

    No one is born obese. Yes, some people become obese from hormonal imbalances or other issues, but most become obese from poor lifestyle choices and poor food choices.”

    Right. Since I’m fat, I’m not taking care of myself. Therefore, I’m obviously unable to care for anything else. Anything else. That’s pretty broad. Does my weight make me unfit to take care of my child? How about my pets? After all, my obesity is probably my own fault. It’s most likely due to my poor food choices. I guess I should have decided to not get fat! Wow, it’s so simple! I wish I would have thought of that before! Shame on me for eating the wrong foods!

    Are you starting to see a trend here? I can’t possibly be a good pagan, can’t possibly be dedicated to my path, because I’m fat. If I cared about myself, Mother Earth or anything else, I would loose weight. If I were a good pagan, living in harmony with nature, following the will of The Goddess, I would stop being fat.

    The point that I’ve been trying to make is, you’re initial post about obesity is what has sparked the recent wave of fat shaming we’re seeing and experiencing from the pagan community. Not that you’ve said these things specifically, but you’ve unintentionally given others the justification they needed to say these things. And you know… it’s very frustrating to have you insisting that these things aren’t occurring when, clearly, they are.

    Now, you might wonder how any of this is your responsibility. The fact of the matter is, you are a very high profile person. People will listen to you. If you say that they should do something about the “problem” of obesity, then many of them will try to do that in ways that are harmful, hurtful, and humiliating for people like me.

    Unless you know me, unless you are a trusted member of my family or extended family, you have absolutely no right to talk to me about my weight, size, what I eat, how much I eat, how often I work out, or anything else having to do with my health or my choices! It’s simply none of your business and I won’t be put into a position of having to explain myself to total strangers. You have unintentionally opened the door for total strangers who think they know something about me and my life to make value judgements about how I live. I won’t stand for it. Period.

    Do you understand now?

    Reply

  12. Catherine,

    One, No I did not imply that anything is anyones “fault” only that introspection could lead to insight. I don’t see fault here

    Two, My appoligies if you find what I believe to be the truth as offensive. I also find offensive your attempts to saddle me with thoughts I do not have.

    Three, I have no interest in silencing anyone and have never indicated that that I have.

    And again, you attribute thoughts and ideas to the authors of the above comments that they did not say or intend. Are you really waiting around to pounce on anyone who dares to mention these issues. Please get over it. If someone says something directly ridiculing or abusive of fat people I would be in their face in a second. But I will not attack people and accuse them of things thay did not say because, ‘I think they might of ment something else” We are responsible for what we say not how others react. Sorry not going to own your thoughts. Have enough to do dealing with mine.

    Reply

  13. You know what? You have been nothing but dismissive and rude during this entire exchange.

    I’ve been trying to give you the benefit of the doubt, here. I kept thinking that you really didn’t have any ill intent, you just weren’t aware of the kind of prejudice we face in the pagan community.

    I did not “pounce” on any of these people. Nor did I attribute anything to them that they didn’t say. Go and read those comment threads. You won’t find anything from me anywhere on those sites. Not even at your own site where this whole mess started!

    I have not, at any point, advocated for you attacking anyone and I certainly don’t want or need you to get in anyone’s face on our behalf!

    All I’ve asked of you is to take a step back and look at this situation from a different angle. I’ve simply tried to show you the “proof” of fat shaming that you asked for.

    Clearly, I’ve been wasting my time because you obviously have no interest in trying to understand. No matter how many people share their experiences with you, no matter how many examples you’re given, it’s not enough. You still insist that it’s all in our heads, that we’re making it up, and that we really aren’t experiencing these things at all. Clearly, your only interest is in furthering your OWN agenda… whatever that may be.

    I’m sad to say that I’ve finally joined the ranks of those people who think you’re an asshole. There. Now you can go cry because I’ve called you a name and you can moan about how victimized you are.

    I’m done with this.

    Reply

    1. Sounds like you need to be done. And no I have listened, I just disagree. I do hear the pain of those shamed by larger society. I just don’t see it in Paganism.

      Blessings to you in your journey,

      Peter

      Reply

      1. There is no reason that you would see it. You have a socially acceptable body shape, so because other Pagans haven’t shamed YOU, you insist that it isn’t happening. The reality is that you are absolutely not a better witness to my experiences than I am. Think of it in terms of playground bullying. If a kid shows the teacher his bruises, does the fact that the teacher didn’t see the attack make them go away?

        You don’t have the right to decide whether my experiences have really happened. They did. I was there. I was bullied for my weight by other Pagans, and your call for my weight to be the so-called community’s business opens the door for it to happen again.

        Reply

        1. well we have found one area of agreement, I am not a better witness to your experience and you are not a better witness to my experience. One point I never called for your weight to open for discussion, I don’t know you. I wrote about my friend and obesity. I did not write about “Fat People” I have no idea how anyones weight affects them unless I am close to them, have a relationship with them etc.

          And I disagree, I have seen and confronted sexism agenst women, transgendered individuals, gays and people of color in the community. My first social justice action was when I was eight years old. The idea that such snhaming and bulling is occuring regulary in our community is not supported by evidence. I ask for evidence, an example of some individual calling fat people names, making jokes about them, discrimination agenst them and all I get is posts interpreting others post to read in insult where there can as easly be read that none was intended. May this be a very incommon problem in the community? Sure, but the idea that it happens all the time, not my experience, and frankly I am well experienced in recognizing socal justice issues.

          Reply

          1. Dude, you just mansplained, whitesplained, heterosplained, cissplained, and thinsplained all in one comment.

            *applauds* I’m impressed.

            Reply

            1. ???, ok I am bafflled on “splained”?

              Reply

              1. I don’t currently have the spoons to elaborate, so I provide you with a link. You can find a good explanation here, about halfway down the page.


              2. The problem with concepts like these is that they make assumptions, I read the defination and came away with the idea that it is both a valuabe tool when justified and a wepon that can be used to discount others. Frankly I was addressing my years of experience in Social Justice and Civil Rights ations. I wll not be talked down to by those who assume thay have a moraly serprior position because of their experiences. I am proud of my life time of service in social Justice actions. If you have the need to label that with such a term, all it proves is that you have no idea what you are talking about. Really stupid to make such assumptions.


              3. So you’re basically saying that because you’ve worked in social justice, you can’t possibly have privilege at all or ever speak from a place of privilege.

                Why not just say “BUT I HAVE FAT, FEMALE FRIENDS!!!” It’s quicker.


              4. No I never said that, but thanks for once again attempting to put words in my mouth. I am saying that I have a long record of real action on social justice and civil rights. Many of these actions involved not only my confronting my privilege but also my calling on others do do the same. I am not some arm chair liberal who pontificates about privilege, I am some one who gets arrested for protesting injustice, who gets in the dirt helping when disaster strikes those who have no such privilege, who has a lifetime of history fighting ignorance and bigotery. Frankly I have a pretty good idea when there is discrimination or shaming going on. Having those who appoint themselves the “gardians of confronting privilege” pick me as the poster boy of privilege is laughable. Come on folks, at least do a little research on who you are engaging with if you want to make outlandish accusations. As a result of this post I have been called asshole, bigiot, stupid, ignorant, a “f..k Head and told that I hate fat people, really? the post was motivated by a death and my intence friendship with the individual who died who was obese. Can you not make that connectio?.

                Frankly my Identical Twin brother( I checked with him on saying this) struggled with obesity. And yes, when it got really bad, ( he could not breath after walking a few yards), I spoke to him lovingly and with concern. Guess what he responded with grace and lost much of the weight and is healther today as a result. He has also told me on multiple occations that I saved his life. And yes he is still “fat” but healthy and not obese, I love my brother and many others in the community of all shapes, colors, genders etc.

                You know, you folks acting as if you are the ultimate authority on the supject just turns you into the kind of bullies you pretend to oppose. Others also have experiences relivent to this conversation. Some you may not agree with, but get a grip, they are not ignorant or stupid because they disagree they just have diferant experiences that inform their views. But if you want to go forward being bullies, by all mens continue, kind of sad though.


              5. Stephy,
                No my place should not be in the background. History teaches that it is when people of privilege confront their own privilege that things often begin to change. For example, when young white kids traveled to the south as “freedom Riders” suddenly the national press and the country paid attention. In terms of womens sufferage. Women did not vote it in, men did, confronting their own privilege. Travon Martim has a chance at justice because individuals of privilege have steppet forward to spotlight the case. Privilege can be a powerful wepon when turned on it’s self. And I believe that if you are a person of privlige you have a responsibility to confront it and when you are able, turn it on it’s self.

                I do not believe privilege should exist in our society, but it always will, even if Pagans have real political power one day, they will become a privileged group. Everyone needs to fight for social justice. To say that a person by virtue of their race, religion, gender or health status should be in the backgroung is just more bigotry gised as progressive thought.


              6. These words are portmanteaus of various privileged identities (white, heterosexual, cissexual, and having a thin body) with the word “explain”, or slurred to spell “splained.” Morag’s point is that in your previous post, you took a privileged stance to explaining to issue without stopping to check or question that privilege.


          2. No. You asked for examples of fat shaming. That’s what you got.

            Shaming isn’t just about direct insults. It’s about the more subtle statements, often (but not always) cloaked in “concern”, that make a person feel guilty, or ashamed of their actions and choices.

            If someone calls me a fat assed bitch, that’s not going to shame me, that’s going to piss me off, make them look like an asshole and lead to a confrontation.

            But, if the same person says, “I’m concerned about your weight and how it affects your ability to live in harmony with nature. The Goddess wants you be healthy, that’s Her will!”

            It first assumes that I’m not as healthy as I could or should be, and tries to make me feel bad, or ashamed of myself, for going against the will of The Goddess.

            Let me try to explain this a different way. Lets take this statement from Colleen Beaty above.

            -“I am having thinky thoughts, though, that how we treat our bodies is relevant to how we treat Mother Earth. If we can’t respect our bodies, is that why we can’t respect Mother Earth?”

            What if she weren’t talking about fat people? What if she were talking about women who choose to have multiple sex partners? Then, it would be slut shaming.

            At this point, I don’t expect you to take me seriously or put any value on my words. You’ve proven time and time again that the only opinions you value are the ones that match your own. I’m not writing this for you.

            I’m writing this for other people who might happen upon this blog who share these ideas. People who might not realize that what they’re saying and doing is causing harm to many people.

            Reply

  14. As a white, straight, cisgender male, your role in social justice on issues of race, sexuality, and gender should be in the background. If you’re an ally, rather than a person who knows what it’s like to be on the other side of those issues, then you aren’t the appropriate one to lead the charge. By doing so, you demean the very people you’re looking to defend, by saying that they can’t do it on their own unless you lead the way. You also don’t have the experience to understand the subtleties of what’s problematic and why, unless you seriously examine your own privilege, which I don’t believe you have, or you wouldn’t use your “social justice background” as an excuse for being an asshole. Here’s the part you’ve missed on this, the same way you missed it on the issue of fat-shaming: Your good intentions DO NOT MATTER if they’re paired with actions that, whether you bother to understand why or not, offend other people. I’ve seen how you behave towards me. I don’t want you speaking on my behalf on the subject of my gender or sexuality, because A. you haven’t had the experiences to understand what offends us and what doesn’t, and B. because you’re rude enough to make the whole cause look bad.

    The problem here is that while you’re looking at other people and telling them that they need to examine themselves and their own attitudes, you’re not doing it yourself. You’re not looking at how you’ve valued your idealized view of the Pagan community above the bodily autonomy and personal agency of others. You’ve overstepped the personal boundaries of others, and instead of looking at yourself and seeing what you’ve done to offend, you continue to defend your problematic positions in the most arrogant ways possible. My body is not the community’s problem, and it certainly isn’t yours.

    Reply

  15. Peter,
    the thing that you’re missing is that you, coming from a place of privilege, don’t get to decide what we consider to be shaming or fat phobic, any more than you get to decide what’s sexist, or racist!

    If it makes you feel any better, I also don’t get to decide what’s offensive and oppressive to the minority groups that I’m NOT a part of! I’m okay with that! Sadly, you aren’t!

    The fact of the matter is, if you don’t want people to call you an asshole, then stop acting like one! Don’t troll their blogs for three weeks trying to bully them into conforming to your worldview and maybe people won’t call you an asshole!

    No one invited you to come here and try to silence us. No one invited you here to harass us! You chose to do that all on your own!

    If you don’t like what we’re saying, you’re under no obligation to read. But don’t think for one second that you have the right to lord over us your experience, your age, your accomplishments or anything else!

    I may not be a high and mighty BNP like yourself, but I’ve got 25+ years of fighting for causes that I believe in under my belt! Don’t you dare insinuate that I have no right to talk back to you. I know exactly who you are and I know full well the things you’ve done. That doesn’t mean that you’re perfect. That doesn’t mean you can’t make mistakes. That doesn’t mean you can’t be wrong. AND, that doesn’t mean that you are ENTITLED to one spec of respect from me. Especially when you aren’t showing me or people like me one iota of respect or consideration!

    You are not my “elder”. You have not informed any portion of my path. You are not automatically entitled to my deference or my respect.

    You have told me to “get over it”. Now, I’m telling YOU to get over YOURSELF! You’re not nearly as important as you think you are.

    Reply

    1. First off I don’t consider myself a “Big name Pagan”, secondly I never “insinuated” (code for I am atributing this to you even tho you did not say it) that you should not talk back to me, As I have said multiple times “I don’t want to silence anyone, I like debate. My point is I am a little tired of being talked down to in this thred in a demeaning mannor, like you, I have a long history and many experiences fighting bigotry that inform my opinions. Just getting a little tired of again and again being called names when my discourse is respectful.

      Reply

      1. See, here’s the thing. Your discourse is NOT respectful when you refuse to acknowledge that your privileged remarks, in which you have told us that our perceptions of our own experience were wrong, were deeply problematic. This is NOT ABOUT YOU. It’s about our rights to live our lives as we like without having to explain or document or answer to people like you, because our bodies are NONE OF YOUR BUSINESS.

        If you wouldn’t tell me, as a queer woman, that homophobia doesn’t exist, then don’t try to tell me where fatphobia does and doesn’t exist. Because you don’t know. You have the ability to walk away from these issues if you want to, because they aren’t yours. They aren’t attached to the skin you walk around in every day of your life. And that’s what privilege IS. And until you know what it’s like to live in my skin, you have NO right to tell me, regardless of your background, whether or not my experiences are valid. You don’t get to disagree with my experience, because YOU ARE NOT AN EXPERT ON MY LIFE.

        Reply

        1. Stephy,

          Really I don’t disagree with your experience. I believe that that is how you honestly preceive the Pagan commuity, as filled with people engaging if fat shaming. Where we part is weather I precieve that also, and I don’t. Frankly many of the most respected leaders in our commuity are fat. Never really thought about them as fat before this conversation with those who see shaming everywere. But they are, no one is going around shaming them. Also I have recieved a number of emails from individuals in the commuity seff identifying as “obese” expressing support for my position and willingness to speek out. You see, you don’t get to speak to others experience either, only your own.

          If for example, someone tells me the sky is rainbow colored on a clear and sunny day, they may believe it, that does not mean I have to agree. In addition, the dozzens of examples I have given in this conversation of individuals distorting my words, attributing to me thoughts, ideas and actions I dont have are great examples of the kind of reactionary lack of clear thinking that I have had to deal with in this conversation. Add that to the abusive language directed at me and I am left with little choice other than being highly doubtful of the unsupported claims made by many here.

          Just because a fat person makes a statement about being fat does not make them an expert, or any more credible in the wider issue. They can only speak to their experience, and their experience while valid, does not necessarly make it so.

          This idea that “If Peter would really listen, he would agree with us” is poor tinking, not logical and representitive of how discource needs to mature in our community. There are honorable, honest and open people in our community that disagree with you, disagree with me for that matter. There is no reason to engage in judgment, anger and attacking just because someone disagrees. This goes to why I don’t like the name calling. It is needless and ment to be hurtful and judging, when no such actions are neeeded. The idea that for you to be right someone else has to be wrong is a great example of the kind of black and white thinking ( good/evil, true/false,) that the Pagan community needs to move away from. I /we as a community can honor those with whom we disagree and engage in respectful conversation even friendship based on the extensive common ground we share.

          Reply

      2. Oh bullshit! You haven’t been anything near respectful. During this entire discussion, you’ve been nothing but dismissive, insulting and rude. What do you think would happen if you went into a stranger’s home and behaved this way? Do you think that person would just shut up and take it from you because you said they should? No, they’d toss you out on your ass! Honestly, the fact that Morag hasn’t done that yet is a testament to her patience and dedication to helping people understand how serious this issue is.

        For those trying to follow along this is what you posted above. WordPress doing what it does, anyone who comes along won’t be able to read it. So I’m going to re-post it here.

        “No I never said that, but thanks for once again attempting to put words in my mouth. I am saying that I have a long record of real action on social justice and civil rights. Many of these actions involved not only my confronting my privilege but also my calling on others do do the same. I am not some arm chair liberal who pontificates about privilege, I am some one who gets arrested for protesting injustice, who gets in the dirt helping when disaster strikes those who have no such privilege, who has a lifetime of history fighting ignorance and bigotery. Frankly I have a pretty good idea when there is discrimination or shaming going on. Having those who appoint themselves the “gardians of confronting privilege” pick me as the poster boy of privilege is laughable. Come on folks, at least do a little research on who you are engaging with if you want to make outlandish accusations.”

        As if we don’t already know who you are! As if that should change our opinions on your behavior HERE! As if that entitles you to anything! We need to do some research? That’s hysterical coming from you! You’ve obviously not taken the time to do any research on the social justice issues of obesity and fat shaming, yet you feel educated enough to tell us that we’re stupid, making it up, imagining it, and mentally ill! If you had spent any time at all doing your own research, we wouldn’t have been having this argument for three weeks!

        “As a result of this post I have been called asshole, bigiot, stupid, ignorant, a “f..k Head and told that I hate fat people, really? the post was motivated by a death and my intence friendship with the individual who died who was obese. Can you not make that connectio?.”

        No. Your behavior HERE is what’s earned you the title of asshole.

        “Frankly my Identical Twin brother( I checked with him on saying this) struggled with obesity. And yes, when it got really bad, ( he could not breath after walking a few yards), I spoke to him lovingly and with concern. Guess what he responded with grace and lost much of the weight and is healther today as a result. He has also told me on multiple occations that I saved his life. And yes he is still “fat” but healthy and not obese, I love my brother and many others in the community of all shapes, colors, genders etc.”

        I have absolutely nothing to say about your brother. What goes on your family is your own business. I’ll thank you to leave my personal business to me and not try to make it a “community issue”.

        “You know, you folks acting as if you are the ultimate authority on the supject just turns you into the kind of bullies you pretend to oppose. Others also have experiences relivent to this conversation. Some you may not agree with, but get a grip, they are not ignorant or stupid because they disagree they just have diferant experiences that inform their views. But if you want to go forward being bullies, by all mens continue, kind of sad though.”

        I’m sorry, did I go into your space and pick a fight with you? Did I go into your friends space and pick a fight with hir? No, I didn’t. You came here. Don’t like it, you can always leave.

        The fact of the matter is, we ARE the authority on our lived experiences. Not you. We ARE the authority on our bodies, not you! This is my body, this is my life, NOT YOURS!

        Reply

    2. And one more thing, it is the people responding to me that are doing the bullying. All the name calling etc. , has not come from me. It is playground bully language. It seems more like the shoe is on the other foot.

      I am not trolling anything, when my name is mentioned in a blog or in a comment it gets my attention. Simple, The blog author does not want me hear, they can say so. You dont want me to comment, fine don’t respond to me or mention my name in your posts. You do have a right to say whatever you want, I support that. But simply responding to your comments about me is not bullying. It is called a discussion.

      Reply

      1. Again I call bullshit. I think you need to back and take a look at the things you’ve said.

        Reply

        1. ….holy crap, I go to sleep for nine hours and everything EXPLODES in this thread! (Well, more than it was exploding anyway.)

          Reply

  16. There is no explosion, just more of individuals accusing me of saying things I have not said. More of the bully mentality, “agree with me or I will vilify you” time to just ignore untill some reasonable discourse is established.

    Reply

    1. If you’d like to ignore you certainly may! I’m surprised you’ve kept up with this thread for as long as you have, to be honest.

      Reply

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