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What’s Happenin’ —

May 22, 2012

It occurred to me that perhaps we need an introduction page for our little community for those who fall into our clutches without expectations, including our various policies that are scattered throughout our vast archives.

We’ve had a few people pop in who blurt out random bigotry and/or ignorance, and it may help the dimmer among us to stay focused if we installed some sort of How To manual to set expectations.

Let’s start with the name: why Fierce, Freethinking Fatties?

What’s so great about being a Fatty, anyway? And isn’t Fierce just another word for asshole? And who wants to be Freethinking, considering considering this.

Well, the thing is, as a fat person, I am personally sick of the crap society thinks that I deserve to endure because of my size. If unhealthy lifestyle choices gives us license to be complete and utter assholes to others, then sign me up for the Temperance Movement because you drunk bastards are all sorts of recklessness, self-destruction and death.

But as a society, we generally respect the right of others to get drunk, so long as they aren’t driving or bugging me. Some of the biggest fat hating assholes I know are also some of the biggest alcoholics I know, and at some point you and I are going to have to pay for his liver replacement.

We don’t analyze how many drinks the drunkest people at the bar are. We don’t steal furtive glances at the barflies along the stools. We don’t have 4-part documentaries sponsored by HBO, the CDC, the NIH, the First Lady, the United Nations, NATO, the Bilderberg Group and the ghost of Jack LaLanne (or his teetotaling equivalent). We don’t have First Ladies going on Celebrity Rehab and talking about what an inspiration Amy Fisher is.

Because while we are horrified that fat people cost us $73 billion in productivity (even though it’s patently false), we don’t even give a damn if alcohol costs us $161 billion in productivity.

This is what we call a folk devil. When there’s a panic about some moral issue that is supposedly rending the very fabric of our nation, be it women, minorities, immigrants, drug addicts, sexual liberation, juvenile delinquents, Heavy Metal and whatever else Rush is against now.

If the reason for panic (health and social costs) is not applied to comparable “problems,” then there’s something else driving the stagecoach, people.

In this case, society’s response to the obesity panic is largely fueled by a cultural contempt for the personification of gluttony and sloth (in this case, fat bodies), which have their roots in our Puritan foundation.

But in the past 120 years, the nation has adopted slimmer and slimmer ideals of beauty, beginning with Lillian Russell, the 200-pound actress, singer, and sex symbol from the 1890s

Culminating in Twiggy, the 91-pound model and sex symbol from the 1960s.

The 1960s saw the modern incarnation of diet culture, which has become an $80 billion dollar industry with ZERO results.

So, we, the Fierce, Freethinking Fatties, are done buying into all of this crap, and we are looking to change the way society looks at us, and treats us, and we will not rest until the panic comes to an end.

Our contribution toward that end is this blog, which provides Fresh, Daily Content, Monday through Friday, and TOTALLY FREE access to our vast archive, which was a headache to navigate up to now.

First and foremost, take a moment to acquaint yourself with our tabs above, which include the following sections:

  • Diet Talk — Many people who are involved in the Fat Acceptance movement have spent a lifetime dieting in the pursuit of thinness and have zero interest in you and your fool proof way to melt away the pounds. They’ve heard it, they’ve tried it, they’ve tossed the book. But we believe that the subject of weight loss and dieting must be addressed directly, both from a medical and cultural standpoint. So, how do we balance these two communities? How do we allow people to talk about dieting, including their own experience, without irritating the crap out of everyone? Apart from the Ratings system we developed, our Diet Talk page is intended to set the groundwork for productive, proselytism-free discussion.
  • Fatties — Who’s behind this impressive monstrosity?
  • Hall of FFFFame — Past Fatties whose contributions we’ll always appreciate.
  • Join Us — All of our Fatties started out just like you, wondering if they had the moxie to write for FFFs, and it turns out they all did. Here’s where to find out the simple process for joining our team.
  • Let It Out — You need a place to vent and we’ve got a comment board. Let loose, my friend.
  • Philosophy — What inspired all of this?
  • Ratings — We developed our Ratings system to deal with the various experiences and interests of our community. Some people have a history of eating disorders, while others just don’t care about health news. At a glance, you’ll be able to know what general topics the post contains with an at-a-glance color-coded rating buttons. This page also grants you access to our archives, organized by the ratings. Want to read about eating disorders or health news? This is where to search our archives for the subjects of interest.
  • Themes — Each day, we feature a different theme for our posts. For instance, today is TMI Tuesday, because there’s a crapload of information in this post. You can read a summary of all the themes, or submit your own, as well as search the archive by theme.

Feel free to comment on any posts from the past, as our posts are always live.

However, be forewarned: if you have a problem with us and intend to write some sort of sharp, incisive attack on us for being stoopid fatties, let me save you some time.

We’ve had one persistent troll who has crapped in the punchbowl for everyone. This became the first time we had to use the unofficial policy known as the Asshole Rule. In an attempt to prevent censorship, we tell people that if you’re being an intentional asshole and five people tag you an asshole in a comment, then your comment is removed. If you have three comments removed, then you earn a permaban.

Thanks to modern technology, certain trolls like to use IP proxies to bypass our ban, which ultimately led to our latest policy, the Clear and Present Asshole Rule. Should you type out your epithets one hairy knuckle at a time, sparing no vulgar cliché, and I, as Chief Fatty, deem you a clear and present asshole, then I delete your comment immediately and henceforth.

UPDATE: I have no installed a moderation wall. The first time you comment, it will be moderated. After that, you can comment as much as you want.

That being said, neither the Asshole Rule nor the Clear and Present Asshole Rule is intended to limit dissent.

Au contraire, mon frère.

This policy is intended to preserve our pleasant, troll-free community, in order to provide a forum for discussing this complicated and incredibly interesting subject.

Personally, I enjoy discussing the medical aspects and have written exhaustive responses to critics (including Dan Savage) in an attempt to present the evidence supporting our view. So, if you have a differing viewpoint, please share, but expect us to insist on substantiation other than “but diabetes!”

And that’s about all you need to know to navigate Fierce, Freethinking Fatties, although this tutorial is subject to change as needed.

If you have any questions, feel free to send me an email at atchka at hotmail.

Thank you for stopping by, and we hope you enjoy your visit to our little corner of the Fatopshere.

16 Comments leave one →
  1. vesta44 permalink
    May 22, 2012 10:18 am

    Awesome tutorial about FFF. DebraSy found a link about the amount spent on dieting – In 2009, the market for weight loss products and services was worth nearly $121 billion. They’re expecting it to be $134 billion by 2014. Here’s the link to the article Spending on Weight Loss Products to Reach More Than $134 Billion in 2014 . This just makes me sick.

    • May 22, 2012 10:47 pm

      Holy shit! Really? Seriously? I’m going to have to start citing this. If Jackass McSurvey can make shit up about $73 billion in productivity, then I can cite a $121 billion weight loss industry. Thanks vesta!


  2. JeninCanada permalink
    May 22, 2012 10:23 am

    I love our Clear and Present Asshole rule; there`s an ENTIRE INTERNET OUT THERE, plus real-life meat spaces, where people can spout off about fat. This is our space, our sandbox and people will play by our rules or they can GTFO. End of story.

    • May 22, 2012 10:48 pm

      Yeah, honestly, I just got impatient with the Asshole Rule for those who were just here to call us names, nothing more. I think it’s really perked up the place. 🙂


  3. LittleBigGirl permalink
    May 23, 2012 12:52 am

    I just have to say Lillian Russell is my new idol and I want her dress. XD

  4. BBDee permalink
    June 14, 2012 9:46 pm

    I’ve been perusing all the tabs here the last couple of days and have been enjoying myself immensely! I think it’s great that you lay it all out here–philosophy, rationale, etc. behind all this and don’t forbid any related topic except prostheletizing and being an asshole. You guys rock! And I have put in my 2 cent’s worth in several discussions and i hope you all enjoy my comments as much as i have enjoyed yours!

  5. December 27, 2012 2:28 pm

    Just dropping in to say that I love this blog! Thanks so much for writing!

  6. Brook permalink
    May 1, 2013 6:38 pm

    I just wanted to say I love you ❤

  7. June 20, 2013 12:11 am

    I am so glad I found friends out here in cyber space, or whatever the hell this place is. I don’t know about other fatties, but I find words like obese and bariatric insulting. Especially when people are trying to be so “nice” or “P.C” “Thank you… for being me , I mean you” tee-hee ;)WTF I’m on meds, I can be corny.

    • June 20, 2013 10:26 pm

      Hi Carrie,
      I use the terms when talking specifically when speaking about research that uses BMI, or if we’re talking about bariatric surgery. But we certainly don’t refer to individuals as “obese.”

      Welcome to Fierce Fatties. And don’t worry, you’re allowed to be any way you like here. 🙂


  8. BBDee permalink
    June 21, 2013 11:32 pm

    Hi everybody, perfect timing to get an alert in my Hotmail bringing me to this thread again, esp. the part that says “But as a society, we generally respect the right of others to get drunk, so long as they aren’t driving or bugging me. Some of the biggest fat hating assholes I know are also some of the biggest alcoholics I know, and at some point you and I are going to have to pay for his liver replacement.”

    Because one of my few “friends” (read: enable-ees) stopped by tonight, wasted off his ass, and started going on and on about how I just had to do something about my weight, because he loves me like the best friend ever, and he just can’t stand to see how I’m making myself “sick” carrying all this extra weight around. And then he put the bite on me for $20. And I handed it over! What the hell is wrong with me?

    I am getting so disgusted with the human race! I stay home ALONE 99.9% of the time, not wanting to stick my neck out to make any more friends. I know I could do it if I wanted to, I am actually quite outgoing by nature and usually in social situations I do end up with people who want to hang out with me. But I don’t want to hang out with ANYBODY anymore because I know it’s inevitable that they will hurt me and I am sick of being hurt! Other than getting up and showing up for work every day, I think I’m teetering on the brink of agoraphobia! The only human contact I have is with people like Mr. Waste-Oid, and I just have no faith that there is anyone better out there to hang with!

    Thank you all for providing me with this SAFE forum.

    • June 22, 2013 12:36 am

      It’s taken me a very long time to cut those people out of my life, but I’ve had to. I learned that there’s no shame in being by myself if I have to be, and I’m happier that way. I would much rather be by myself than with people who try to screw me.

    • Elizabeth permalink
      June 22, 2013 10:44 am

      BBDee, I understand EXACTLY what you are saying. It seems inevitable that people who are at least somewhat interesting end up being very poor “friends.” No one has lectured me about my weight, but is it common for people to think that us fatties are masochists?

      A supposed friend called me out of the blue to ask me to go somewhere with her; I was upset because I had left several voicemails for her, never heard from her, and I knew she had a problem with depression so was worried about her. All I could get out was “I was upset” when she interrupted and started screaming at me. I don’t usually write people off, but I would never associate with her again — I am disabled and have just about zero tolerance for abuse of any sort. (I should mention that this former friend is jealous of my marriage and my disability, believe it or not.)

      I don’t feel hurt by such behavior, just depressed that most people don’t seem to mature emotionally AT ALL.

  9. BBDee permalink
    June 23, 2013 12:18 pm

    Wow! I hear ya there…when the screaming starts, the friendship ends! With ANYBODY as far as I’m concerned. And if my choices in life are to be alone or be abused… I guess I’ve decided on the former…

    Follow-up on my drunk buddy: I called him yesterday morning (not TOO early, knowing how bad he’d be hung over) and told him exactly what I thought of his showing up here fertilizer-faced and ranting at me about something he knew nothing about, etc…

    He actually stopped by later, falling all over himself apologizing, he said the last thing in the world he wanted to do was offend me, he was so drunk he didn’t remember most of the stuff he said, etc. But that he cared about me and didn’t want to see me get sick, etc. from being this way because he “knew” that carrying around all this extra weight was bad for my heart. I tried to explain to him that he shouldn’t buy into all the propaganda he hears about this stuff, that I had a clean bill of health as of my last doctor’s appointment, and that yes, there are healthy fat people! I tried to explain to him that THIS is what offended me, not that he “insulted” me but that he bought into the stereotype hook line & sinker! I tried to tell him assuming that I’m a walking heart attack because I’m fat is the same as assuming I have a nasty temper because I’m a redhead, or assuming I’m dumb because I’m a blonde! He said “yeah, I suppose I watch too much TV…”

    I also tried to make the point that “you think you have a right to lecture me about the error of my ways because you care about me…but what about all the people who have cared about YOU? What do YOU think when somebody starts in on you about your drinking and driving, etc…?? Can you say HYPOCRITE???!!”

    Sad to say, that point was totally lost on him.

    • Elizabeth permalink
      June 23, 2013 1:28 pm

      Let’s see, you’re healthy and he’s not, and he may cause harm to someone else if he is drinking and driving. Perhaps the toxins still in his liver and bloodstream made it impossible for him to understand an exceedingly clear point you were trying to make!

      Except for a wealthy (and stingy) friend who was simply oblivious to other people, most of the friends I have had issues with were abusing one substance or another. The woman I mentioned above is alcoholic, but carb binges can create a similar toxicity and hangover.

  10. December 13, 2014 1:42 am

    I just learned about the topic of fat studies two years ago when I was researching (which I love to do). I’m kinda a nerd too for the health stuff. The cultural propaganda is so slick and thick that until recently I bought into the if you are past a level of fatness (that being individual) your health was impacted. Now I know about HAES and how movement is tremendously more important than one’s weight. I’m so looking forward to learning more from you all! Thanks!

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