Two conspiracy theorists die and go to heaven. St. Peter tells them that Heaven is a place of all knowledge, so they can each ask him one question and he will reveal the answer to them. The first one says "Who killed John F. Kennedy?" St. Peter says "Lee Harvey Oswald." The other says "Who was he working with?" St. Peter says "He acted alone." The two of them look at each other and say "Wow! The coverup is bigger than we thought!" But seriously, what keeps this stuff going? Some would say the evidence. Other would say mental illness. I myself am unsure, and I have a hard time really focusing on this one as I didn't live through it. This article is pretty much a starting point for me and a note to self. Steve, debunk this one.
Americans keep on getting dumber.
Now I understand that sometimes one idiot does something stupid and makes the rest of us look bad, and I wish that I could find a way to make that case here. I can't. My fellow Americans, we are stupid. And we have gotten about as much mileage out of warning labels as we possibly can. There is a certain denominator that is so low that a warning label can no longer save that, and I fear that the number representing that low water mark has recently surpassed our national IQ. Now I am sure that this could be a worldwide problem, but I am stuck in one place and can only report what I see here, and the future looks pretty dim.
What has me wound up today? Well, it is a facbook post that showed up in my stream. It features the photo of an attractive plus sized girl (pictured below) who is clad strictly in her underwear. Now where I come from, you have to pay extra for pictures like that, but this girl posted this one of her own free will. It's her prerogative to do so, and here is the caption she included with the picture.
WARNING: Picture might be considered obscene because subject is not thin. And we all know that only skinny people can show their stomachs and celebrate themselves. Well I’m not going to stand for that. This is my body. Not yours. MINE. Meaning the choices I make about it, are none of your f*cking business. Meaning my size, IS NONE OF YOUR F*CKING BUSINESS.
If my big belly and fat arms and stretch marks and thick thighs offend you, then that’s okay. I’m not going to hide my body and my being to benefit your delicate sensitivities.
This picture is for the strange man at my nanny’s church who told me my belly was too big when I was five.
This picture is for my horseback riding trainer telling me I was too fat when I was nine.
This picture is for the girl from summer camp who told me I’d be really pretty if I just lost a few pounds
This picture is for all the f*cking stupid advertising agents who are selling us cream to get rid of our stretch marks, a perfectly normal thing most people have (I got mine during puberty)
This picture is for the boy at the party who told me I looked like a beached whale.
This picture is for Emily from middle school, who bullied me incessantly, made mocking videos about me, sent me nasty emails, and called me “lard”. She made me feel like I didn’t deserve to exist. Just because I happened to be bigger than her. I was 12. And she continued to bully me via social media into high school.
MOST OF ALL, this picture is for me. For the girl who hated her body so much she took extreme measures to try to change it. Who cried for hours over the fact she would never be thin. Who was teased and tormented and hurt just for being who she was.
I’m so over that.
THIS IS MY BODY, DEAL WITH IT."
No, I'm not taking the bottom feeder low road to pick on this girl who has clearly been through a lot by making a post to point out the fact that if she were over it, then there would be no need for the post. My best guess is that she is over it enough to talk about it, but still working through it and seeking approval. That doesn't make her stupid, it makes her human. Here is the comment on the picture that got me wound up. The name is removed to protect the ignorant.
As a mother of a teen age daughter who is currently struggling with her body image, the postive message this gives everyone brings tears to my eyes. Thank you for this inspiration to every girl and woman who struggles with the imperfections of their bodies.
Seriously? As the mother of a teenage daughter you see another teenage girl posting pictures of herself in her underwear to the internet and the positive message brings tears to your eyes? As the father of a teenage girl this might bring tears to my eyes, but not the kind one gets when they see a positive message. It's the kind that a man gets when he thinks of all of the naive things his child might do that could come back to haunt them later. This woman's post has helped me to appreciate other cultures. Like China's policy of forced sterilization, for example. People this stupid should not be allowed to breed.
Now let me address the girl in the picture. You are an attractive girl. I can see why you were picked on for your size, but there are guys out here that like full figured women. Next time you go to the mall or the store, look around. You will see a bunch of fat girls being escorted by the men who love them. The problem is that boys your age that like big girls get picked on the same way that big girls your age do. They don't want to identify themselves as a chubby chaser because they will get ridiculed with names like... well, chubby chaser. But there is not a damn thing wrong with it. I happen to be in love with a plus size girl, and I think that she is positively beautiful. But enough of this touchy feely crap, let's get to the real point. You might think you have taken a stand, and made a heroic statement to the world, but you didn't. You posted soft core porn for chubby chasers. No guy who likes skinny girls is saying to himself "Well, I guess I was wrong. Fat girls are hotter than skinny ones." But a potential employer might be questioning your judgement.
Where have we as a society found ourselves when a jerk like me feels the need to stand up and tell girls not to do things that they might regret later? This is seriously disturbing to me. I'm the guy that says "Nice picture, you should post that to your facebook" and hopes the girl is dumb enough to fall for it. Suddenly I am the conscience of America? I have to be the guy that tells mom she shouldn't dream of the day when her daughter feels good enough to post skin picks on the interwebs? Translation? You are screwed, America. We have become too stupid to sustain the weight of our own helmet and safety goggles. AM I being overly dramatic? Want more? Try this one on for size.
Did you know that there was a day when they didn't report suicide on the news? Check this one out.
The article, “The Responsible Reporting of Suicide in Print Journalism,” traces historical evidence that some news coverage of suicide prompts more attempts. Citing a dramatic increase in the suicide rate after Marilyn Monroe’s death in 1962, the authors note that “the imitative effect of press reporting appears to increase with the prominence and frequency of the story.”
So what do we do? We run specials like Bullied To Death to inform teenagers who are being picked on that not only is suicide an option, it is perfectly understandable in your case. And then we stand around in shock and horror as more and more teens resort to suicide because they are bullied. But then, of course, we catch on and stop doing it, right? Public outcry says "Enough reporting on suicide following bullying" right? No! We demand laws that will lead to prison time for kids who bully so that we can destroy 2 lives instead of 1 life that might have been fine had we not inundated them with suicide infomercials. "But Steve, you don't understand! The problem is getting worse." I do understand! You don't.
Is it fun to be bullied? No. Did this girl go through a lot being picked on for her weight? Absolutely. But fortunately for her, as she was working through her issues we were dumbing down our society to the point where she reached her "Post Nude Pics To The Internet" stage right about the time where we were stupid enough to see it as a good thing.