Monday, 14 February 2011

Irresistible loathing

Apart from noticing my sucktastic proofreading e.g, just noticed I can't spell 'irresistible', I hear on the fatsphere grapevine that our 'hate the fatness love the personification of fatness' friend Dan Savage is grinding his phobic axe uhr-gin. This time with a witty little 'satire' exposing the irrationality of an anti gay (marriage) bigot from Iowa.

Said nitwit feels that gay folk are a public health hazard to society as they have a lower lifespan than normals due to 'the "lifestyle" of homosexuality'. I'll pause whilst you pick your jaw up off the floor.

But let's face it, it's hard to ignore just how closely that matches the basis used to justify stigmatizing fat people and people like Savage know that. Which is why they are so fed up with fat activists insistence on pointing out how his hypocrisy undermines his message-some wag said in the comments that there is no such thing because ' fat ACTIV(E)ist' geddit?


The big giveaway is satire’s supposed to undo its subject-the bigot- not leave that aside and abuse to allegory-fatz.

If he wishes to try this again, he should pick a group he doesn't so obviously loathe.

....even if gay people had lower life expectancies (which we do not)—and if that "fact" all by itself was a justification for banning same-sex marriage, why stop with gay people? Iowa should ban fat marriage. There are, according to the state of Iowa, more than 1.4 million obese people living in Iowa. That's nearly 30% of the state's population, and those numbers just keep rising. The social costs of Iowa's obesity epidemic are pretty staggering—and those costs include including premature death and lower average life expectancies for Iowans.

Do you hear the spear piercing the poisoned heart of homophobia? If so, yours is better than mine. It's fascinating even something as dear to him as marriage rights for gay people must take second place to digs at fat people.

Iowa, an overwhelmingly Republican state is 11th in the US league table of plumpness/fatness or 63% and 6th in life expectancy (78 years).

Savage's home, (not birth) state is 51st in both plump/fatness at just under 50% and life expectancy at 72 years respectively.

As we know round these parts figures of overweight/obesity rates are all over the place when it comes to matching them up with life expectancy and I'm sure I knew that as soon as I read his (likely to be) false assertion of premature deaths and lower average life expectancies, didn’t he check it out?

His struggle with fat hate is increasingly like a microcosm of those clinging to homophobia. Not anywhere near as dangerous right now, but how far do people wish to test that? Not all attacks happen on the streets.

There's always some 'excuse' as to why human beings are unpredictable, not paper constructs and therefore subject to laws and imperatives we don’t fully understand. So much easier to assert condemnation. This momentum of prejudice only gets easier to go on and harder to stop, I don’t expect perfection, but if he cannot root out this temptation what does he think he’s asking of others?

Inevitably many of DS's supporters who go on to spew the usual nuanced take on fatness, defend him using Swift's famous raging satire against the British establishment's murderous neglect and abuse of the Irish to explain our error to us (in case mere reading did not).

In the same way anti gay hateists feel 'put upon' by the insistence of ditching their hating certainties, so Savage and his band are fed up with those who cannot stop seeing right through him. We know that in his head he is hiding his phobia to himself as he thinks that is clever it ought not to be visible to others either. Just like homophobes who think the ‘concern trolling’ route hides a multitude of sins and are just sooo obvious.

I think he ought to dispense with the temptation to imagine the ‘swap’ playing on his mind will work out has he might imagine. Fat people as methadone to wean haters off the hard stuff. Often you'll find addicts develop a taste for both. After all these attacks on gay people have been taken and used to bait fatz to the extent that he's on board with it.

It was not inevitable.

Has all this really lessened the burden of homophobia? I very much doubt it, yet fat hating has gained a ground in the meantime. I daresay the fact that this state is a conservative one is supposed to give pause for thought by linking fat stigma to gay stigma for Republican types, to let them in on how it feels.

I can see that he is trying to hold people directly accountable for homophobia whether it’s black people and prop 8. Or homophobes who represent a ‘fat state’, but dealing in the same techniques he himself said don’t pass muster smacks too much of master’s tools.

I’ll leave the rest to the man himself;

"Satire is a sort of glass, wherein beholders do generally discover everybody's face but their own" Jonathan Swift

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