Should fat people be allowed to vote?

The underpinnings and alternative to fat-shaming

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Given the state of treatment of an overweight person in 2017, I would have to say no to the voting proposition. They are a minority group, we stereotype them, we discriminate against them, we shame them, and we take advantage of them economically. So really, I don’t see how their vote should count for anything important. (this is sarcasm, of course – laid out here to make the following points)

If you post on the internet that overweight and obese folks should not be blamed (or shamed) for their inability to lose weight, 10,000 people will leave comments like, “who shoved those cheeseburgers in their mouths?” and “it’s their own fault their such fat asses.”

How does such a despicable level of discrimination and hatefulness against a group of human beings still exist? What sustains it? The same things that sustain prejudice against races, sexual orientation, religion, and so on: the assigning of our own personality traits and values to someone in a different situation, and assuming that we know how it would go if we were in their shoes.

The truth is, if the fat-shamers could somehow be switched into the bodies of the people they persecute, they would not be able to cross back. They would be stuck on the other side of the expanse, realizing that the journey back is not what they thought – apologizing and begging to be switched back. *

The first step to ending this negative force is to concede that we don’t know what it is like – that it is a flawed assumption that we (or anyone) would be able to do better with the same circumstances. The second is opening our minds to new possibilities for weight loss – so we can unlock the potential of a beautiful, valuable segment of our population.

*Of course, everyone knows someone who white knuckled through a diet and lost weight. Those are the outliers. We are talking about most people here. 

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