Thursday, 17 July 2014

Preliminary Ruling on Disability

The preliminary finding from the Karsten Kaltoft case is that "severe obesity" a BMI of 40 + can count as a disability. It's from the advocate general and isn't binding, though its usually a formality that the European Court of Justice will follow.

What can I say?

I do not agree with seeing weight, any weight as a uniform disability. Nor indeed did the plaintiff. It makes better sense to follow the norm which is to recognize disability as it occurs and not to invent it. But, since when did sense lead this crusade?
The advocate general, Niilo Jaaskinen, who advises the court, found that EU law did not prohibit discrimination specifically on the grounds of obesity,
And there you have it. If folks wound up by their own hysteria can no longer view fat people in a rational objective manner and we know they cannot. Who should pay the price?  Fat people or those indulging their unrestrained overexcitement?

The court has found that it should be as per usual, polluter pays.

On the other side, it could lead to a greater sensitivity in terms of providing adequate furniture and fixtures to accommodate larger bodies without fuss. I find the parking obsession comical, but was intrigued that it might mean employers have to provide healthy options!

Some warn it could make fat people less employable. I hope not. 

Jaaskinen threw out the notion that a self-inflicted disability could be any less worthy of protection, saying: "The origin of the disability is irrelevant. [It] does not depend on whether the applicant has contributed causally to the acquisition of his disability through 'self-inflicted' excessive energy intake."
Pass me a hankie to dry my tears of laughter.  That's what can happen when grotesquely indulged delusion crashes into an arena where it cannot hold sway-for once and is subject to arch rationalists.

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