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The Billion-Dollar Seesaw

November 8, 2011

Trigger warning for discussion of weight loss advertising.

The other day, as I was relaxing on my couch watching an episode of Judge Judy (I can’t help it, I just love her), I was reminded yet again of what a schizophrenic society we live in. We’ve all been subjected to diet commercials. I’ve noticed they are especially prolific during the day, when advertisers assume a lot of women will be at home tending to the kids and wondering what to cook for dinner. Since I work at home, and occasionally goof off by catching a daytime show, I also come under their radar once in awhile. Here is what I’ve noticed for a very long time, and I’m sure you have too.

They’ll air a diet commercial; some bright-eyed and bushy-tailed young woman will stand there saying, “I was so miserable 30 pounds ago! Then I tried Weight Watchers/Nutri System/Jenny Craig/[INSERT DIET MEGA-CORPORATION HERE] and now I feel free! I can live again!!!” Then they’ll show her before and after pictures, and maybe even a picture of her inside some old pants, which are stretched out to look like a clothesline. Those of us watching who are far more than 30 pounds overweight feel appropriately chastised, along with all the shame, malaise, and annoyance that follows.

Thirty seconds later, a commercial for Domino’s Pizza/McDonald’s/Burger King/Sara Lee Cheescake/[INSERT FAST FOOD MEGA-CORPORATION HERE] airs. The commercial will linger over and accentuate every single gooey, mouth-watering, drippy, cheesy, sugary bit of saturated fat-and-carbohydrate laden deliciousness. They will encourage us all to open up our mouths and enjoy some of it, and there are always thin people smiling and happily enjoying said food.

It’s a constant yes/no message; the eternally doomed romance of temptation and shame. On the one hand, we’re all being told how fat is disgusting and our lives will never be happy until we lose weight. Then, in the next breath, we’re subjected to a barrage of unbelievably alluring, junky food.

It’s the same with women’s magazines. I try to avoid them at all costs, but whenever I’m in a waiting room, there’s an inevitable pile of them on a table somewhere. It’s either that or stare at the wall, so I flip through them… and it’s always the same: countless pictures of toothpick-thin models, articles on working out and dieting, and then a HUGE food section in the back with the most delectable recipes for crispy fried chicken, deep dish lasagna, and triple chocolate brownies drizzled with caramel.

We all know it’s a big con. We all know the diet industry is a multi-billion dollar bottom feeder, preying on our insecurities and egos in order to thrive.

Thank God for HBO.

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39 Comments leave one →
  1. November 9, 2011 10:20 am

    I hate it when people discount the influence that advertising has on our culture. If advertising didn’t work, then corporations wouldn’t spend BILLIONS on it trying to influence us, right?

    The cognitive dissonance in advertising is even more pronounced if you watch The Biggest Loser, where people are routinely shamed for even THINKING about eating something “bad,” followed by commercials for restaurants with sizzling entrees and monumental desserts. We’re a nation of hypocrites, but nobody wants to acknowledge it.

    Good post, Gabriela.

    Peace,
    Shannon

  2. Fab@54 permalink
    November 9, 2011 10:33 am

    This whole mixed-message thing has been one of my biggest pet peeves for years!!

    What really puts my panties in a twist are the commercials for [any of the] weight loss corporations / diet food enterprises in which happy, newly-slenderized people, grinning ear to ear, standing before the most horrifying, HUGE, blurry, (usually years old) photo of their fat selves declare proudly how THEY lost 18 lbs, 22 lbs, 30 lbs, 60 lbs!! and STILL got to enjoy all their favorite things like PIZZA, (ooooh) CHOCOLATE, (Mmmmm) CHEESECAKE, (oh boy!) ICE CREAM, etc.,
    and all the while they’re showing you ooey-gooey close-ups of melted, cheesy, chocolatey goodness right in your face. See? There MUST be some ‘trick’ to it. Of course all us fatties want to eat pizza and cheese cake and have chocolate truffles after every meal, so Weight Watchers (or Jenny Craig, or whoever) must know the secret!
    I gotta get that so *I* can “eat like a fattie eats” but get thin and fool everyone!
    Please… There oughta be a law!

  3. L.J. Utter permalink
    November 9, 2011 10:58 am

    Its because they love to feed off our shame cycles. We want the wonderful foods, then get slapped down with Jenny Craig commercials. They know we’ll give into temptation, then oh the shame….
    Its the double standard of commercials and when they air that gets me. You can see birth control commercials late at night, or during the day. Never during primetime. But Viagra commercials? Primetime, everytime.

  4. November 9, 2011 11:33 am

    I understand what you are saying, but I stopped listening to media messages ages ago. By now I know what I like and how I choose to live. Every now and then I might pay attention to a commercial or a magazine ad, and even if I do, I have plenty of perspective on how reality is vs what the ad is trying to sell me.

    Our world is diverse and complex, full of all kinds of options and ideas. Can we really expect a unanimous chorus of advertising just one idea without another to oppose it?

    • Fab@54 permalink
      November 9, 2011 11:56 am

      It’s really not a matter if YOU have the ‘correct’ perspective, or if I have the ‘correct’ perspective, or if either of us or even most of us utilize our critical thinking skills… it’s about what the mixed messages and shaming techniques do to KIDS, particularly girls, as well as to any of us without a healthy level of skepticism (and self-esteem) to ignore those very well thought-out, manipulative ads.
      This isn’t about two viable but merely opposing “ideas”. It’s about preying on and taking advantage of fat people hating themselves and feeling weak because they can’t change their bodies to fit acceptable standards, all the while STILL dangling that that fabulous pizza, and cheesecake, and chocolate in their faces….. It’s bullshit.

  5. vesta44 permalink
    November 9, 2011 1:16 pm

    The thing that about those weight loss commercials/ads that really chaps my hide is that Nestle, who has some of the most wonderful recipes for desserts, is also the company that sells one of those diet plans (can’t recall off-hand which one it is). So they’re making money off people both ways – sell them the “guilty” pleasures and then sell them the diet plan to get rid of the pounds those so-called “guilty” pleasures caused. The sad thing is that those so-called “guilty” pleasures probably aren’t causing any extra pounds at all.
    And I gave up believing in any kind of advertising before I graduated from high school – I figured out way back then that most of it was lies designed to get me to part with my hard-earned money for crap that I really didn’t need but that companies were trying to convince me I just had to have in order to fit in, be hip, be smarter/cuter/whatever. Since I had always marched to my own drummer and had never fit in anywhere, I was pretty sure that any product I bought wasn’t going to change those facts (I learned to be a cynic at a young age).

  6. November 9, 2011 2:04 pm

    Thanks for all your comments, everyone, and I hope more keep coming in. Vesta, I remember doing some research on the diet industry for a project I was working on, and you’re absolutely right … Nestle and I think at least one other big corporation owns both diet-food companies and also manufactures junk food. They sure know what they’re doing. It’s unconscionable. Yet it keeps going on and on and on, like a goddam merry-go-round and they don’t want anyone to get off. I’ve also noticed how in all the commercials for these diet companies like Jenny Craig, Nutri System, etc … they don’t try and teach you how to eat healthy at all. Instead, they manufacture these junky, “portion controlled” foods like frozen pizzas, chocolate cake, etc etc … which probably only serve to whet the appetite of whatever person is on the diet, causing them to binge and get a taste of the “really” good stuff … and then they’re on the plan forever, on and off, their whole lives. They are breeding lifelong customers with this insane double message. yes, we want you to lose weight, so have some of this delicious, non-nutritious junk food in controllable amounts, eat our food, buy buy buy. The diet pushers like Jenny Craig are really just food sellers, selling their own brand of food and unattainable end result … I don’t understand why more people can’t see through this and stop making them richer.

  7. November 9, 2011 4:01 pm

    I have to say- I object to the use of “schizophrenic” here. I’m learning more and more about ableism and am re-evaluating my own vocabulary and am very careful not to use an illness, physical or mental. As a bipolar person I have to say- I *hate* it when people describe a person or situation as “bipolar”. They’re not, it’s not. It’s dismissive of the reality of what people who *are* schizophrenic live with every day.

    But yes, a very good observation- while I don’t think fast food makes people fat (some thin people enjoy copious amounts of fast food all of the time), but it’s still a culture that says “fat people are disgusting because you eat too much pizza/burgers/cake/etc.. so here.. have a look at this delicious looking pizza/burger/ice cream/etc” the message being that these things are only for thin people- you fatties just watch and resist.. because if you don’t it means you’re weak! I guess it’s easy for them to believe they’d be “strong” when they’ve never had to try.

    • November 9, 2011 4:40 pm

      Heather,
      I understand where you are coming from, but the term “schizophrenic” has a long-standing history as a describing objects. From Merriam-Webster: contradictory or antagonistic qualities or attitudes

      So, I’m not sure this would be considered ableist language. Anyone have an opinion?

      Peace,
      Shannon

  8. November 9, 2011 7:28 pm

    I do. I wasn’t being ableist (whatever that means) or trying to diminish the impact of schizophrenia on anyone who suffers from it. I object to that term, lol. Heather, I was simply trying to illustrate the contradictory nature of the advertising messages we all see, every day. It was not a slur on anyone with schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, ADHD, anxiety disorder, obsessive compulsive disorder, et al, and I think I made that pretty clear. Context, people. Come on.

  9. November 10, 2011 4:20 am

    I have an issue with the use of the term schizophrenic in this context too. I have read atchka and the author’s comments (and dismissals of Heather’s concern). I still think the use of the word in this way is unnecessary.

    • November 10, 2011 9:56 am

      Bri,
      After posting my comment, I realized that the fact that it’s in the dictionary does not prevent it from being offensive to some, as “lame” is considered ableist, yet the common non-disabled usage is in the dictionary as well. That being said, I don’t believe in policing language, but I do believe in raising awareness of how our words affect others. Letting Gabriela know that there are people who find the non-clinical usage of “schizophrenic” hurtful is not a bad thing. Awareness can only bring more understanding and more compassion into the discussion. However, after my time on Tumblr, I learned that if we edited ourselves based on the offense of others, our ability to communicate can be impaired.

      For example, there are some who have strong moral opposition to the use of profane language and have told me as much in comment in my posts where I’m all “fuck this, fuck that.” But I feel that sometimes “fuck” is the best word for the job, so while I’m aware that it may offend people and I use profanity with slightly more discretion now, I am not going to limit my vocabulary to prevent offense. I think ableism is different because the words apply to human traits, and the usage of those traits in non-clinical situations can be dehumanizing. Just as I’ve phased out “retarded” from my vocabulary, I have personally tried to limit the ableist language I use. I don’t feel like I have to censor myself, but having been made aware, I try to be considerate. But that’s me.

      I want to share this post from Tumblr I read a while back from the person who wrote a chronic illness blog called “Stuff Sick People Have to Put Up With” and I agree with the author’s point: context matters. Language is dynamic and evolving, and I believe that as society begins to adapt toward more inclusiveness, many ableist words will become obsolete. However, I don’t think censorship is the way to achieve that goal.

      The goal of Fierce Fatties is to include a diversity of backgrounds and opinions, and if we restrict the language available to our bloggers, then we may also limit that diversity. I have no problem with people calling others out, but I leave it up to our bloggers to choose how to respond.

      One final note: your comment was left at 4:20 a.m. my time. Woohoo!

      Peace,
      Shannon

  10. November 10, 2011 4:21 am

    Oh, and how do you know you weren’t being ableist if you don’t even know what ableism is? Perhaps you could do some research on the concept. I would recommend the http://www.disabledfeminists.com blog and their series on ableist language as a good starting point.

  11. November 10, 2011 8:58 am

    Wow. I sincerely apologize if anyone was offended by my use of the term, but I assure you that I meant no disrespect or dismissal of anyone’s opinion or mental condition. I am a writer, and I consider it my right to use the words I choose to express myself. I have noticed, in the plus sized community especially, that people are extremely quick to take offense where none is meant, and sometimes I think political correctness is killing communication. So much misinterpretation and miscommunication when it’s totally unnecessary. It’s pretty sad, when we’re all on the same team.

    • November 10, 2011 9:59 am

      Gabriela,
      I think learning about ableism is good because it can give you another perspective with which to view humanity. I won’t ask you to change how your write or the words you use, but I do encourage you to try and understand where Bri and Heather are coming from, not so that you might change who you are, but to change how you perceive the effect your words can have on others. That is what Fat Acceptance asks of others, so it is absolutely fair for other special interest groups to ask that of us. Whether you choose to or not, I leave totally up to you. I want to encourage growth, not censorship, but we each get to determine the path of growth that we choose.

      Peace,
      Shannon

      • November 10, 2011 10:18 am

        Shannon, I have no problem with learning about ableism, and I always try to gauge how my writing may affect my readers. I just think that some people are inclined to look for offense where none is meant, and as I said, I’ve really noticed this propensity in the plus-sized community. I remember getting into a baffling kerfuffle with a woman on Facebook after I’d posted a blog. She took offense because I wrote that I consider emotional eating a problem. She even went so far as to accuse me of having no clue what the HAES movement was about. It was ludicrous. Perhaps being a large person and accustomed to being on the receiving end of discrimination makes some of us ultra-sensitive to discrimination or prejudice where none is intended. I am not an ignorant or non-compassionate person … far from it. I just hate being misinterpreted. And a lot of people who take offense come off as quite bullying in my opinion, demanding that you read 75 manifestos on the subject of such-and-such, in order to qualify you to write about certain issues. Bullshit. I am who I am. If people don’t like the way I express myself, then they don’t have to read me.

  12. November 10, 2011 9:06 am

    Having said that, I have no intention of changing my writing style or censoring myself or tiptoeing around language in any way to please the grumbling few. That doesn’t mean I don’t care about their opinions, it just means that I’m more inclined to cater to my own. I have my own way of expressing myself and if some people don’t like it, oh well.

    • November 10, 2011 3:26 pm

      I’m autistic, and I only object if the context suggests that someone was actually being insensitive. You were using the word in its other acceptable meaning, and some people really need to stop looking for reasons to be offended. Yeah I’m an Aspie, yeah I face a lot of shit because of it, but if I spent my life being angry about every single time someone used a word that had the possibility to offend me, I’d never stop being pissed off. I choose not to waste my time, and most discerning people will as well.

      • November 10, 2011 4:33 pm

        Thank you, CC, for being so level-headed and open-minded.

      • November 10, 2011 7:00 pm

        I second this, CC. Life is too short, and frankly, I’m sick of people telling me how to use language, especially when the language refers to me. I once had someone who is NOT mentally ill tell me why I SHOULD be offended if someone uses the word ‘crazy’ and why it was oh so wrong for me to use it.

        And RoundGirlRocks, I’m defending you here. As a crazy person, I was not offended and other people support you. It’s just that in this kind of setting, it does not hurt to be careful.

        • November 10, 2011 8:00 pm

          Thanks, Joanna. I agree, it doesn’t hurt to be careful. But where do we draw the line between being sensitive to their feelings and censoring ourselves? Some people will always be upset with what you say. It’s like that famous adage, “You can’t please all of the people all of the time.” I appreciate your comments, thanks. 🙂

        • November 10, 2011 9:50 pm

          THIS, Joanna, THIS. Augh. I find it unbearably precious and PC when people tell me that I shouldn’t use words that in effect DESCRIBE ME. It’s like people telling us that we shouldn’t use the word fat – I damn well want to.

          I think everyone has a line they won’t cross, and that’s about as good as it’s going to get – if we all stopped using every single word that might conceivably possibly offend someone, nothing would ever be said. After a certain point I lose patience.

  13. vesta44 permalink
    November 10, 2011 10:18 am

    Having a mental illness myself (I live with depression), the use of “schizophrenic” to describe our society’s hang-ups with food and dieting is not really accurate. It’s more a cognitive dissonance than it is schizophrenia. I’m not willing to say that our whole society is mentally ill – that negates the experiences of all of us who live with mental illnesses of all kinds on a daily basis and do quite well in spite of it, as well as negating the experiences of those who struggle with mental illness and don’t do well. Our society isn’t struggling at all with its cognitive dissonance around food/dieting/the ideal body – it’s the individual members of society who have finally wised up that are struggling with that cognitive dissonance and fighting it.
    Using schizophenic in this way is just as ablist as calling our society lame or retarded for having this attitude around food, dieting, and how all bodies should meet one narrow standard of beauty.

  14. November 10, 2011 12:31 pm

    As a person who, earlier this year, was looking at a diagnosis of schizophrenia myself, I was not at all offended by the use of this term. Words develop over thousands of years and the meaning varies greatly according to context. I accept that the same word can mean a million things, both harmless and offensive, and it really is context that makes the difference.

    I personally do not use the term and I am not asking anyone else to like or approve of it. I’m just adding my two cents. When I was younger, I was hyper-sensitive to every possible offense I could cause someone with my language. Now that I actually live as a poor person and as a differently abled person, I could give a shit. Part of me likes that words can mean so many different things, that words used to describe the human condition-blind, crazy, etc. can be metaphors and cultural references with years of history behind them. Part of me just thinks that prejudice is better off out in the open. If you want to call me a psycho crip bitch, just do it. Don’t tiptoe around it when I already know what you mean.

    But like I said, I am not asking anyone to like or approve of it. We have all been the butt of jokes or nasty behavior and some words and images can be triggers for us. It’s not too much to ask that, when talking to someone personally, you respect that person’s preferences. When talking to a large group with a certain constituency, like majority Hispanic, it’s good to know “trigger” words for that group. In the case of the Hispanic crowd, you might want to find out if they prefer Hispanic, Latino, Chicano, etc.

    Anyway, back to the original post, you’re not the first one to point out the mixed messages but this is the first time I have heard of it as an issue of taunting fat people and setting them up to binge and then diet. Maybe it’s not a cultural illness after all. It’s a conspiracy of sorts.

  15. November 10, 2011 1:25 pm

    Thanks, Joanna. No, it is not too much to ask to respect other people’s preferences, and I certainly did not mean to offend anyone. As for your last point, I do believe it is absolutely a conspiracy … very big business conspiracy. These corporations try to control the food we eat and at the same time, increase our desire for the food they say is killing us and ruining our lives. They have control of both sides of the spectrum: the dieting end and the trying-to-entice-us-to-eat end so that we will need their diet centers. This is no accident. It is a very deliberate strategy that had made them billions of dollars.

  16. November 10, 2011 3:13 pm

    And that is definitely your preogative Roundgirlrocks. As it is mine to choose to no longer read a writer who refuses to use inclusive language and who uses standard techniques to silence people who disagree with her.

    Shannon, I appreciate your thoughtful replies, that which you obviously wrote with consideration. You know, Roundgirl rocks reminds me of you when you first starting participating in the Fatosphere. Ah you have come so far since then! ; )

    • November 10, 2011 10:06 pm

      I know exactly what you mean, Bri.

      I consider it a great honor that of all the Fatosphere people, you and I are still on such good terms, ironically enough. I think you at least get that as much of a social clod that I am, I am always trying to do what I think is right. I just tend to… go all out. Yeah, that’s the best euphemism for whatever the hell is wrong with me. 🙂

      Anyway, someday I’m going to have to go back and reread from the beginning of Atchka! 1.0 and see just what an obnoxious, pompous douchebag I was, and compare to the minor progress I’ve made since then. 😉

      Peace,
      Shannon

  17. November 10, 2011 4:31 pm

    Your choice, Bri. No problem on my end.

  18. November 10, 2011 4:32 pm

    Thanks, CC!

  19. lifeonfats permalink
    November 10, 2011 6:16 pm

    I don’t use the term myself but I have no problem with others who do. Then again, I don’t suffer from a mental illness so to me it is not offensive.

    But I have to agree with roundgirlrocks. Some people just look to get offended. There’s being sensitive and then there’s being sensitive. I don’t think we need to constantly walk on eggshells when trying to write blog posts. Those of you that get easily offended need to know where we are coming from as well. It’s extremely difficult trying to figure out a way to write that won’t make people upset.

  20. November 10, 2011 6:36 pm

    I just want to clarify here that I never said I was offended. I never said I was angry. I said I thought the use of the word in this context was unnecessary. There is a great divide between what I said and what you are all claiming that I feel.

    I do not ‘look to be offended’. That said, why am I not allowed to state my opinion about something without having other people try to silence me by saying I am overreacting or too sensitive etc? These are classic techniques used by people to silence others. Society says fat people are looking to be offended by stereotypes used against us, that we over react and that we are too sensitive. And the same silencing techniques are being used here. It is quite ironic.

    Roundgirlrocks can write in whatever style she chooses. More power to her. I can disagree about the use of a word. It doesn’t have to devolve into a slanging match or involve the casting of dispersions on another persons character. We can disagree and stay classy at the same time.

    • November 10, 2011 10:08 pm

      I think that so long as you are stating your opinion neutrally and respectfully, I have no issue with people saying when they find a certain verbiage offensive, just as I have no issue with the other person not changing. I know people say intent is not magical, but without respect for intent then how could we ever understand each other?

      Peace,
      Shannon

  21. November 10, 2011 8:07 pm

    This issue has gotten way out of proportion. I started off writing a post about the double messages imposed on us by mega-corporations and it has devolved into a debate about the proper or improper usage of the word “schizophrenic”. I’m sorry if I offended anyone by using it. I didn’t mean to hurt anyone’s feelings. I respect all of you, including those of you who disagree with me.I think we have all expressed our opinions on the matter. So can we please stop now? Thank you. 🙂

    • November 10, 2011 10:01 pm

      Gabriela,
      I wouldn’t discourage this. I know it wasn’t your intent, but dialogue builds community. From what I can tell, nobody’s mad and nobody’s offended. We’re more discussing the issue of ableism and what it means, which is a part of Fat Acceptance. Healthism and ableism come from the same “me-centered” mindset that makes people completely oblivious to the complicated and natural diversity among humans and health. One of my pet peeves is when people from one “rights” organization completely ignore the rights of other groups (PETA, anybody?). That’s why I created the never-used theme Temperist Tuesday, which is specifically for subjects unrelated to Fat Acceptance. We are more than just fatties and we have passions beyond Fat Acceptance. FFFs is a community, which, for me, is more about sharing the entirety of your person and not just focusing on the subject at hand.

      For example, I love hearing CC talk about being an Aspie. I don’t know any Aspies in real life, and what she has described seems pretty familiar to me (particularly the having-no-clue-what-people-feel/think/mean part). Maybe you’ve got some other personal interest that takes up a lot of your psychic space. If so, it is nothing but beneficial for you to share it with the group because that is how we learn to listen and respect one another.

      So, by all means, keep the dialogue going, if that’s where the energy is. Explain your perspective and take in the perspectives of others. Don’t judge, just accept that this is how others see it. Disagree strongly and understand completely. Don’t shy away from difficult issues, but if you need to take a break.

      There’s a lot of shit going on in the world right now and, honestly, sometimes being fat isn’t that big of a deal in the grand scheme of things. But for the moments that it is, FFFs is here to share that experience, or any experience, that you feel is important and worth sharing.

      I’m glad this dialogue is taking place and I hope you are too.

      Peace,
      Shannon

      • November 11, 2011 8:22 am

        I’m not shying away from the topic, Shannon, I’ve just said all I had to say on the matter and it’s getting really old, from my perspective. I thought this was a site that dealt with fat issues. But by all means, if any of you would like to continue discussing this topic, go for it! I just have nothing further to add. My bottom line is: (for what seems like the 95th time) — sorry if I offended anyone but I’m not going to censor myself when I write. (I will say this: if some of you were offended by my using that word in this post, I can only imagine how offended you must get on a daily basis out there in the real world. You must be writing letters to the editor constantly.)

  22. November 10, 2011 8:08 pm

    But if anyone would like to add more comments about the actual topic, then please do! 🙂

  23. Mulberry permalink
    November 15, 2011 12:27 am

    Darn, I miss some of the most interesting arguments. Well, I was away for a few days, so I’m jumping in a little late with a few random thoughts.
    Bri, I don’t see how you’re being silenced here – isn’t there a difference between being disagreed with and being silenced? When I think of being silenced, I think of the way Atchka was chased off some Fatosphere blogs in the early days.
    I am sure that I am ableist even though I myself am not completely abled. It’s about context. I like to express it equivalently by saying that’s it’s not so much the words, but the music that matters. If I call something “dumb”, I don’t mean that it’s like being a deaf-mute. If someone calls me a “fucking fatso”, they don’t mean that I’m a sort of large person who must certainly be getting a lot of sex.
    Oh yeah, about the actual topic… I don’t believe it’s a conspiracy. It is a tactic that works in many situations, therefore it is used and copied a great deal. Keep people feeling guilty (as many religions do regarding sexuality) and you’ll have a customer for life. Sin, temptation, confession, it’s an old, old formula.
    Atchka, FWIW, don’t civilize yourself too much. We need a bit of outward-directed scrappiness here. Anyone want to organize an Occupy Weight Watchers movement? (“We are the 95%!”)

    • November 17, 2011 9:32 am

      Mulberry,
      I like it. I think we’ll have to wait until OWS dies down, though. I think we should make t-shirts with that, though. We’re going to have to start a FFFs Zazzle soon.

      And don’t worry, I believe people here should get to say things how they choose to say them, but that others have the right to criticize respectfully their verbal choices. I fully support outward-directed scrappiness. 🙂

      Peace,
      Shannon

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