Wednesday, 7 October 2009

Smokers, stop it!

Since I cannot be bothered to wrestle with Slate comments there, I'm responding to this comment which I'll quote in full, here, it's from somebody called, Tarkol;

To the overweight. We warned you. We really did. We said you'd be next. We said food restrictions would come. We said once we were too rare a pariah they would turn on you. You didn't listen. -Smokers

Really, (thin)smokers, I wish you wouldn't. What is the point in your investment in this myth? I suspect as you love calling yourself addicts, this is addicts hubris borne of the constant competition for who's addiction is the hardest to give up, etc.,

Sorry smokers, you told me nothing, that I hadn't been learning for the last 30 years. I was in the playground when I realised things had changed because the medical profession had got on board with fat hating. This meant that it took on it's current triumphant sense of righteousness and sense of legitimacy that it had never had before when people could choose whether to be bullying about it or not.

Try to understand that you like others who aren't fat, shield yourself from recognising what has been happening to fat people and just because you affect this pose, doesn't make it true.

Fact is that the momentum against smokers has been building up for a number of decades now, but that doesn't mean that it precedes the fat hating bandwagon in a such an orderly way.

The obesity crisis has been dated from the late 1970's at it started to get nasty before even that.

Along the way, I haven't noticed smokers standing up for fatties, in fact, I've found a lot of them happily joining in fat bashing. There does seem to be some kind of underlying issue that some have with fat people, almost as if they feel that if fat people were more serious about their weight, they would be prepared to smoke as an aid to weight loss (just like some of them). There's also a sense of deflection- if everyone's hating fatties, they're not hating smokers.

Only a couple of years ago, when England sprang a smoking ban on it's cigaphiles, the first words out of many who went about in the media was, "whaah, this is what we do to/how we treat fatties". This is such an old sentiment, that it hardly annoyed me to be honest. They must of been made aware of themselves because they soon stopped.

This for me is the telling part, carelessly stigmatizing others prepares you and your mind to receive the stigma you think you are directing at others. It creates an atmosphere of the same responsive acquiescence and cowardice, no less because it shows the powers that be what you are willing to put up with. It gives them a mental and strategic route to go down, and I'm afraid the spontaneous recognition that this is what we do to fatties, not real humans, shows one of the reasons why smokers have so meekly accepted, not so much their fate, as the treatment meted out to them.

The lesson is, we should stop ignoring how people who may be unacceptable, to us and consider the general ramifications of what's being done to them, follow through and think, what does this mean for others who may be seen in this light? In short, think. Don't just laugh and take part and wallow, you are fouling your own nest.

We all be better off if we stuck up for each other and did not use so called health to vent personal rage or use it as a chance to lord it over each other, always a sign of insecurity.

It's not too late.

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