Fat Rights

You can't say "fat people" without saying "people", because that's what they are, people. Then they should be treated as decently as anyone else and at least one group is dedicated to this cause. Which we totally support, within reason.

This is the logo for the National Association to Advance Fat Acceptance (NAAFA), we'll be analyzing it as part of the Pandora's Box we're about to open below.

Weird

Our analysis indicates fat people understand they are too big and don't appreciate being denigrated. Also that they're a big bunch of pussys who need some aggression in their logo!

Just The Facts

  1. People have rights!
  2. Fat people are people, dammit!
  3. Soylent Green is also people!
  4. Therefore fat people and Soylent Green have rights.
  5. Of course these rights don't extend to exemptions from unavoidable issues, like physics.

Size Discrimination and Rights

So you've probably noticed that people generally don't aspire to "be all that they could be", it just kinda happens. In fact it's a safe bet most who have reached that unintended goal, actually want to be a lot less than they are. Besides being prone to heart and/or type 2 diabetic problems, fat people also face stigma and discrimination, much of it unnecessary. NAAFA says that these people are the victim of size discrimination and some of the injustices they endure include these examples we copied from their site:

  • Earning 1-6% less than non-overweight people in comparable positions
  • Negative attitudes are experienced as early as pre-school and may increase from there
  • Appropriate-sized medical equipment Not Available: (Like patient gowns or stretchers)

It's simply intolerable that a person with more body fat should earn less money, just because of it. Monetary compensation should be determined by a person's job and skill at doing it. Size enhanced people shouldn't have to bear the insults of their skinny peers and ought not go naked in the hospital for lack of a correctly sized gown. We'd suggest building stretchers that can be connected in order to accommodate people of size. But wait a minute, we can hear someone thinking, does that mean every hospital and ambulance now needs twice the number of stretchers? If so, where will they be stored? Also, if large people are to be included everywhere, how can we fit them comfortably into tiny places like subcompact cars and elevators?

Excellent questions, really great questions we can't answer. Sorry.

Exemptions

Look, life is imperfect, there are going to be times where a person's size and weight can't be ignored. Like when Batman 2* asked Kim Bassinger how much she weighed in 1989's Batman. He wasn't trying to make her feel bad about being more massive than an average twelve year old, the graple gun could only carry so much weight. So she says 108 and surprise, surprise, she actually weighed more. How much more isn't said, but the gun stopping after 12 feet implies quite a bit more. Outside of movie fiction, weight can complicate things just as much, if not more.

So there you are, shuffling down the aisle toward your assigned row on the 3:10 flight to San Juan from JFK aboard a 757 narrow body. The aisle seems kinda tight and upon arrival at your assinged row, you wriggle into seat E. Which itself is sandwiched between seats D and F. You notice that a mere four or five inches is all that separates your knees from the seatback ahead and you're tempted to curse Boeing for creating this unbearably small cabin. You know it's actually the airline's fault for its choice to cram as many rows into the aircraft as possible to increase capacity. And revenue, can't forget that. Then you see a huge guy forcing his way down the aisle, not because he's some random asshole, but because force is the only way he can navigate it. At half a snails pace he approaches, people in seats on either side being pushed away like blades of grass yielding to a bicycle tire.

Blimp on a plane.

Despite prayers to airplane gods and all the hope you could command, he announces his destination is seat D, in your row. Introducing himself as Doug, he prepares to make a futile attempt to sit in the seat as designed. Before he gives up, you learn that his moist shirt smells like a combination of Tide and man sweat. He settles instead on the left armrest, which is about as wide as you guess his buttcrack to be. There he not only occupies the seat, but more than half of the aisle.

Luckily you've been constipated lately and already drained your bladder, so the complication of getting up to go to the toilet should be avoidable. Again you know this is the airline's fault, what with the lack of choice regarding seats and not making sure Doug was assigned more than one. Plus he can't be comfortable either, straddling an armrest. The steward looks pissed too, maybe because he hates fat people. More likely it's the fact that neither he nor the drink cart can make it through the gap or that he's going to have to think of some way to fit Doug into a seat belt. Also, what if Doug has to use the bathroom himself? That could make John Candy on a jockey phone look downright roomy.

This story is fictional, unlike the disturbing photo above. Why is it disturbing, are we saying the fat man's obesity makes us ill or is socially unacceptable? No, it's disturbing to imagine what would happen to him and people nearby if the plane crashed on takeoff or landing. A plane crash is bad enough but add an unrestrained, four hundred pound man into the mix and things get much worse than they need to be. Inability to fit in the seat translates to being unable to wear a seat belt, which means he's going to be flying around the cabin as fast as the plane after the initial crash, injuring himself and others. Kinda like the little bastard in this safety ad.

The truth is simple, a man that big should not have been let aboard without at least two tickets. Though in this case he shouldn't have been let aboard at all because, after they got the little guy next to him to take a different flight, the seat belt extenders were still too short and there wasn't a snowball's chance in hell he'd of been able to use an emergency exit.

Why would the airline tolerate such a safety and customer nightmare? Probably because they didn't want to end up on the news like Southwest Airlines, which has kicked overweight passengers off of their flights for being too large to fit in one seat with the armrests down. If the bulky passenger couldn't afford, refused to purchase another ticket or two side by side seats weren't available they got booted.

Anyone out there remember when Kevin Smith was kicked off a Southwest flight in February 2010? According to the link, he usually bought two seats, apparently with the understanding he could only fit comfortably by occupying two seats and that each seat carried a price.

This time he wanted to fly standby, on a plane with only one seat left. He said he was just preparing to buckle his seatbelt when he was told the pilot thought he was a safety risk. Smith was quick to point out there was an equally large man aboard who wasn't ejected, the two women next to him didn't mind, and he wasn't a safety risk. Though he failed to mention how many seats the dude was using and apparently forgot about the small emergency exits over the wings. Now we aren't the pilot, but we're assuming that's what he or she meant by safety risk and we're gonna go into that three paragraphs below. Right now lets see who else has been booted recently.

Does Kevin Smith look like a guy who could easily get through a 20 x 38 inch opening in an emergency? If you said "No" then he's a potential safety risk. If you said "Yes", we'd ask if the above image loaded and if so to take another look while keeping in mind that's less than 2 feet wide and 3.5 feet tall.

Then there was a portly woman who was ejected from another Southwest flight that June, because she only had one ticket and also failed the old AT. She was headed home after a vacation in, we guess Houston. The linked story didn't really say except that they heard it from KHOU. Anyway she apparently flew to her vacation on one seat and Southwest didn't catch the mistake. Assuming things would be cool on the way back, a Southwest employee realized she was probably too big to occupy one seat. They had the gall to not make the same mistake again.

The rainbow of height discrimination, TASTE IT!!

These people are being discriminated against, not for an irrational belief about race or gender, but for the simple fact that large people occupy more space. It's literally the same reason some theme park rides have height requirements; Too short? The safety bar won't fit. Too tall? Finish the ride a head shorter.

Back to our story: It was a long flight and the bad news turned good is that you're not constipated anymore. Probably a good thing too, otherwise you'd of crapped your pants when the plane crashed after landing. You were surprised how much a real plane crash is not what movies led you to believe; Big explosions and fireballs on impact after tense moments of anticipation accompanied by an appropriate soundtrack. Probably the first sign of trouble was how bumpy things got once your plane left the runway after landing, the second was realizing the plane had stopped while Doug kept going and the odor of jet fuel. Suddenly there is fire, lots and lots of fire with liberal amounts of thick smoke. Wanting out of the flaming wreckage you manage to get to an overwing emergency door, where you find Doug. He has miraculously not been injured in the crash. Well it was a miracle for him, to you it's more of a curse because he's stuck in the exit you'd planned on using. Looking for an alternative you realize it's the only exit not blocked by fire or debris. Nope, your friend Doug is blocking the debris/fire free door. You push and push but it's no use, his girth has become an impassible barrier. As you collapse to the floor, lungs full of toxic smoke, you realize that this is how you are gonna die and Doug is probably going to be joining you moments later.

Concerns like this are among the only exceptions to treating fat people just as any normal sized person would be treated. Far fetched as this situation sounds, it's actually possible. (Other situations include being stuck on a liferaft with limited food supplies and giving the overweight person a smaller food ration until they drop some weight. After all, who's heard of a fat person starving to death? This doesn't apply to potable water though, fat people don't store that in their vast reserves of energy.)

It's almost never acceptable to insult or make fun of somebody based on their weight. Not that we're against insults, but targeting someone's weight problem is not only lazy but it has a sort of splash effect for anyone else nearby who also happens to be overweight. Extra demerits are earned if you happen to do this while either including an overweight person in your group or are extremely overweight yourself.

Other ways to accumulate demerits include running out of gas or hitting the cones. Driving over the motorist meant helping fix their car, no demerits for that or beating your suspect up while the sarge ain't lookin'.

Note, if you hadn't already, we said it's "almost never acceptable to insult or make fun of somebody based on their weight." There is at least one exception, people who brag about being able to consume as much food as two or three others while at the same time lamenting on how terrible it is to be fat. Usually this person will be a friend, so you'll wanna skip an outright insult in favor of something like "Well yeah, it would be good to slim down some <NAME>, but then you won't be able to tell me about eating three boxes of Girl Scout cookies in one sitting anymore..."

__________________________________________________________________________________________________________

We number Batmen in the order we got to know them , Batman 2 = Michael Keaton. Batman 1 = Adam West, Batman 3 = Val Kilmer etc. Back?

So Fat People Shouldn't Fly? That's What You Mean By Fat Rights?

Granted we spent more time talking about how it's ok to discriminate against fat people on airplanes, but believe it or not, that's part of the message. Fat people have their weight problems brought to their attention, directly and indirectly, for such stupid reasons that they may confuse actual concerns with more hate.

Glad you could make it Scottie, but please put some more clothes on! Hey don't look so mad, if you want road rash, stay just the way you are. Though while we're talking about it, don't you think marching against anorexia might not be the best way to show your support?

When Kevin Smith is directing, walking his dog (assuming he has one), going to a restaraunt or anything along those lines: He has the right not to be made fun of for his large body. (His movies are fair game though, nobody says you have to take bullshit like Clerks 2 or Chasing Amy without a word.)On the other hand, there are times and places where his weight, might actually be a problem.

Or a bonus...

Imagine Smith was stuck on a frozen peak with two people, who together, weigh as much as he does. Then a helicopter arrives to rescue them, but can only lift enough to equal either Smith or both other people. Who gets rescued first, assuming nobody's really hurt of course, two people or Kevin Smith? We'd tend to think that getting as many people back to safety as quickly as possible is the best way to go, and 2 is more than 1. Don't worry though, in this imaginary scenario the chopper comes back for Silent Bob and everyone lives happily ever after.