"Gosh, researching this article is depressing!" It's 6:30pm on a Thursday night and I'm on the phone with Abigail Saguy, Ph.D. professor of Sociology at UCLA and author of What's Wrong with Fat, discussing why America as a society hates fat women with a seemingly endless fiery passion. Saguy has been studying this topic for years, so I'm preaching to the choir. She chuckles sympathetically.

Why America Hates Fat Women, the Feminist Take

I've gotten similar reactions from every female friend to whom I've mentioned this article topic. A nod, an eye roll, a groan of recognition. Not a single person has contested the statement. Rather, they all seem kind of sorry for me that I've chosen to delve into this subject.
Why America Hates Fat Women, the Feminist Take
But as a fat woman whose weight and self-esteem have both fluctuated wildly throughout my lifetime, as a feminist who realizes that my issues as a privileged white woman are merely the tip of the problematic iceberg, and as an optimistic human who hopes we can one day treat each other and ourselves with kindness, I am deeply invested in talking about American society's problem with fat women. Because yes, it's depressing.
If you need proof that this is an issue worth taking seriously, ask any woman you know how she feels about her body, and who taught her to feel that way. If you need more proof, creep into the comment section on any platform on the internet. Examine the language commenters use when insulting women, specifically. And if you need even more proof, consider that overweight women earn less money than thinner women and—wait for it—all men, according to a Vanderbilt study. The proof is in the fat-free, dairy-free, gluten-free pudding: America hates fat women.

Fatphobia does not stem from health concerns.

First off, more and more research suggests you can be overweight and healthy, including this new study finding "fat but fit" women to be healthier than thin women who don't work out. Still, people love to hide behind the health argument when throwing fat insults around . However, even if America's hatred of fat women is truly 100 percent health related, then why aren't we using "smoker" as an equally offensive insult? Just imagine Internet trolls saying "stupid smoker!" in lieu of "fat b^&%." Hard to picture, right?
"From TV to magazines to the internet, you would think being fat in America is the worst thing you can be," says Jenny Bruso, a Portland-based fat queer woman who writes I Take The Long Way, a nature blog that gets personal from the perspective of an "unlikely hiker." "Whether or not you feel that being fat is unhealthy, we have to take a step back and question this hostility."

So why so much hate?

Society demands that women present themselves in slim packages (don't take up too much space!), and nothing hurts the Patriarchy's feelings more than a woman who doesn't acquiesce to its demands. Society wants you to be thin, and if you're not, you will deal with the consequences.
Ghulam Haider Blogger

Ghulam Haidder

Ghulam Haider is a Pakistani Professional Blogger, Online Entrepreneur, Internet Celebrity, YouTuber and Social Media Activist.

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