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17 February 2010 @ 12:22 pm
Hate On Me, Haters  
A follow up on the Southwest Blog:

All of you fat haters should be thanking Kevin Smith for publicizing his experience on Southwest because hearing that his armrest was able to go down and he got thrown off anyway has convinced many of us never to fly Southwest again. Now your plane will have fewer of us repulsive fat people on board and you will be free to luxuriate in your self satisfaction over not being fat yourselves.

I have been amazed and disgusted by the depth of fat hatred expressed in reaction to this blog entry. I myself have never been a smoker or had a drug or drinking problem but it never occurred to me to assume that makes me a better human being or that I have some right to view people who struggle with those problems as less human or deserving of respect. Maybe fat people make you uncomfortable because you have trouble eating a healthy diet yourselves, I don' t know. It is possible to eat badly and remain thin as long as you don't consume excess calories and exercise.

I suspect it would be easier for me to lose weight than it would be for some of you to learn compassion. I'd rather be in my large shoes and treat all people respectfully than be so hateful towards people I don't even know.

Like the song says, "Hate on me haters..."
lunaetstellaelunaetstellae on February 17th, 2010 08:59 pm (UTC)
Thanks for posting the link to the two blogs. I had not heard of this incident.

As I read the replies to the SW blog, it disgusted me to read the comments of the haters.
But when fat people commented on the policy and/or their experiences, it wasn't much better. Almost all of them were so quick to apologize for themselves, for being fat! They'd usually add that they were trying to lose weight, were 'working on it', etc. What does this have to do with anything? If they are fat, they are fat. It is a fact of their existance, today. Their apologies about being fat to - who, the haters? SWA? in this blog is ridiculous and is counterproductive. It saddened me to read them, and to hear their low self-esteem coming through.

If you are fat, so be it. This is your reality right now, for whatever 'reason' it has ocurred. And whether or not you are actively working to lose weight, that is your business, not the business of others. You are not required to assure others that you are working to meet their aesthetic. You teach others how to treat you, and apologies invite blame. By making such apologies for your appearance, you buy in to the cultural bias and negative attitudes. Have more self esteem than that; you require the space you require, you have a right to enjoy life like everyone else.

That is all.

Edited at 2010-02-17 09:00 pm (UTC)
Tapatitapati on February 17th, 2010 09:10 pm (UTC)
It is conditioning, of course. But I like to make the point that while I might lose weight, it is seemingly unlikely that these folks will gain compassion.
danaewintersdanaewinters on February 17th, 2010 09:29 pm (UTC)
Yeah, that whole Southwest situation saddens me (they used to be my favorite airline, and we travel a LOT), but the comments from the general public tick me off far more than the company did. I don't get what society has against overweight people! I don't get why it still, in the supposed age of "politically correct" sensitivities, no one thinks twice about making fun of overweight people, or trashing them publicly without ever giving them a chance.
Tapatitapati on February 19th, 2010 02:19 am (UTC)
It is truly amazing. I think we are like a lightning rod for others' self hatred projected onto us.
lunaetstellaelunaetstellae on February 19th, 2010 08:29 am (UTC)
I like your icon :))
Phatchick: stupidityladybrigid on February 18th, 2010 03:36 am (UTC)
Well, in one way it's helping me lose weight. Reading some of those comments made me want to puke. {sarcasm mode off}
Tapatitapati on February 19th, 2010 02:18 am (UTC)
squirrelboilersquirrelboiler on February 18th, 2010 08:14 am (UTC)
Thing is...
This all has little to do with actual real people and everything to do with cramming more people on planes to make more coin.

I'm size 13 - skinny-ass babe, right? Not on a plane I'm not. I might as well have a butt the size of North Dakota and also, no shoulders would help greatly. On my last flights I had to kind of ,hmmm, 'fold'? my self inward. The trips were VERY long .

And what oh what are they going to do about people like my son? He's slim - he's also about (maybe over) 6'10". He literally cannot put his legs down in front and he finds his legs pressing against the seat in front. That passenger complains (obviously) but what are they going to do about his height? What we do is try and get him an aisle seat where he can stick his legs out occasionally so he doesn't get cramps too badly and also explain to the stewards that he *has* to stand up once in a while just to avoid the clot issue (it's no joke at his height).

The fact is that people in North America have increased in size in every direction. I've seen so many dudes like my son scrunched up because most young men and many young women are over 6' tall now.

Also, please. It's not like people were all super models 30 years ago. But the Airline companies just kept finding ways of putting more and more seats in and people of all sizes bar children are squished.

The 'official' width given for airline seats ( this is from Boeing ) is 17.2" wide. Now take the few inches of width from the arm rests off that total. Given how *I* barely fit in to the seats last summer, I have my doubts about the figures they give. And who the hell can be comfortable with all of 17" (minus arm rest width) to sit in for hours and hours?

I don't know how anyone who ISN'T Kate Moss can find any comfort in a plane seat.

It's all about the money.

Tapatitapati on February 19th, 2010 02:18 am (UTC)
Re: Thing is...
Of course we are all packed like sardines for maximum profit. I just want a clear guideline other than "our arm rest has to be down" since I don't happen to have a SW airline seat with armrests in my home to test that out. Kevin even had the armrest down and got evicted. So I am not going to trust that these people will be fair with me or any other large person.
lunaetstellaelunaetstellae on February 19th, 2010 08:27 am (UTC)
I agree too, that this is really about the greed of SWA. Their attempt to squeeze so many seats onto a plane to maximize profit is the real issue. Why aren't more passengers angry about THAT??
So they have 17.5" seats? take at least 4 inches off for the two armrests, and you're left with 13.5" hip width to get your butt lowered into that seat.

I don't get why all the complainers weren't angry about the conditions SWA forces you to travel in. Reminds me of a Jerry Springer show where two women are punching each other, instead of being pissed off at the cheating man that is playing both of them!

My husband and I seldom fly, but when we do, we purchase 3 tickets for the two of us. I would never want to take a chance of being publicly humiliated, so we do this outright, We have had to defend our 3rd seat when they have a full plaine, and have refused to allow cabin stewards from stowing other passenger's gear under our seats. It is ridiculous.

The fat haters see something about themselves that they dislike when they see fat people.
We remind them of a deep hatred and issue they have with THEMSELVES. It is their own self hatred we see when they act out. There's more I would like to say, but I am not going to allow this to get myself worked up, so I will stop for now. They are not worth my emotional energy.
thtreladythtrelady on February 19th, 2010 03:40 pm (UTC)
I think some of the fat hatred comes from modern medical science which is busily telling us that being overweight is the single largest cost in health at the moment. It definitely is harder on the body to carry larger amounts, and it does tax the heart, lungs, joints, ect.

Combine that with the health insurance debate, and sheer stunning costs of medical care and you get a rich stew to sit in. People's health insurance rates are skyrocketing and at least a portion of that - they are being told - is because fat people are sick and cost too much. (Please note that I'm saying that is what we're being told, not what I believe.)

So you get someone whose bill has just tripled - and who has been given a target - and you get real unpleasantness. I'm sorry.