One Issue, Two Voices pt1

“Dear Fat People” Video Goes Viral

By Bri Griffith

YouTube comedian Nicole Arbour’s latest video project entitled “Dear Fat People” raises a valuable question: What is the difference between satire and hate speech?

Throughout the video, it becomes abundantly clear that Arbour seems to have confused the two, claiming them equivalent; however, they’re definitely not.

Satire, according to dictionary.com, is the use of humor, irony, exaggeration, or ridicule to expose and criticize people’s stupidity or vices, particularly in the context of contemporary politics and other topical issues.  Nicole Arbour genuinely believes shaming fat people is going to make them want to lose weight, when in reality it’s going to make them feel worse.  They might even, heaven forbid, gain weight as a result of emotional abuse.  Her video isn’t offering a solution to an incredibly relevant issue in society today, instead it’s adding fuel to the already out of control body shaming fire without any remorse.  Below are 15 direct quotes from Nicole Arbour’s video “Dear Fat People” and I warn every reader: they’re very hateful and not at all funny.

1 – “Fat shaming is not a thing.  Fat people made that up.”

Fat shaming is a thing.  Fat people didn’t make it up.  People don’t ask to be devalued or dehumanized because of their size.  A person’s response to how much space another person’s body inhabits defines who they are, not the person they’re responding to.  Also, in this case, ignorance is not bliss.  In fact, it’s insanely harmful.

2 – “Yeah, but I couldn’t fit into a store that’s discrimination.  Uhhhhh no.  That means you’re too fat.  You should stop eating.”

What a well thought out idea.  Let’s tell people to stop eating!  Perfect, because eating disorders aren’t real either. (Sarcasm intended).

3 – “There’s a race card, there’s a disability card, there’s even a gay card ’cause gay people are discriminated against wrongfully so.”

4 – “Fat shaming… who came up with that?  That’s f-ing brilliant.  Yes, shame people who have bad habits until they f-ing stop.  Fat shaming!”

5 – “If we offend you so much that you lose weight… I’m okay with that.”

Nobody should be okay with this type of behavior.  It’s disrespectful and wrong.

6 – “Obesity is a disease?  Yeah, so is being a shopaholic but I don’t get a f-ing parking pass!”

7 – “Fat people parking spots should be at the back of the mall parking lot.  Walk to the doors and burn some calories.  Why are we helping them?”

8 – “I don’t feel bad for you because you’re taking your body for granted.”

9 – “They forgot to tell you that plus sized stands for plus heart disease, plus knee problems, plus diabetes… plus your family and friends crying that they lost you too soon because you needed to have a coke plus fries.”

A person who isn’t fat can also struggle with heart disease, knee problems, as well as diabetes.  The “coke plus fries” comment is an unnecessary dig.  Being fat isn’t always about food; it can be about depression, lack of sleep, illness, medication, and emotional distress of any kind.

10 – “I was at the airport not to long ago… as I get to the front of the line, a family comes to the front and gets to bug me.  Fattest, most obese… I’m talking TLC special fat.  They got to go to the front of the line ’cause they were complaining that their knees hurt too much to stand in it.  Oh, I just came an hour early like I was supposed to, but you overeat let me help you.”

11 – “And then they complain, and they smell like sausages, and I don’t even think they ate sausages, that’s just their aroma.  They were so fat… they were that standing sweat fat.  Crisco was coming out of their pores like a f-ing Play-Doh fun factory.”

Still wondering how a comment like this came out of another human being’s mouth.

12 – “Now I’m running to my plane… who do I see in a (expletive) golf cart?  Fat family!”

13 – “His fat was on my lap.  It was actually on my lap.  I took the handle, I squished it down… I said my seat, your seat.  I actually took his fat and I pushed it into his seat and I held it.  He was fine… he was just fat.”

14 – “And I’m not saying all of this to be an (expletive), I’m saying this because your friends should be saying it to you.  Think of me as one of your ride or dies.”

15 – “The truth is, I will actually love you no matter what… but I really, really hope this bomb of truth exploding into your face will act as shrapnel that seeps into your soul, makes you want to be healthier so we can enjoy you as human being longer on this planet.”

I respect Nicole Arbour’s want for people to live healthy lives; however she’s not advocating for change in a productive and supportive way.  Her video is hateful and emotionally damaging, and if my “ride or die” were to speak to me this way, I’d stop riding.  Moral of the story is, if you want change in this world there’s a way to do it, and it’s never through hate.  The only way to battle ignorance is through education.  Human beings are powerful and incredibly influential especially when given a platform in which people actively listen to and believe in them.  It’s unfortunate Nicole Arbour’s decided to blindly take advantage of her YouTube success in a way that may make some of her viewers feel less than human.  Know the difference between comedy and hate, treat people with respect, and if you want something done find a way to do it that doesn’t involve dragging people through a pit of hell.  It’s possible; in fact it’s necessary.

“Fat shaming is not a thing.  Far people made that up.

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