Self-esteem is baaad, mkay?

So Fat Lot of Good and Axis of Fat have already posted some great responses to the Susie O’Brien piece on why self-esteem is bad for fatties, the economy, and Good Thin Folk (also published in the Herald Sun, that bastion of outstanding journalism).

I don’t really have the patience to go through most of the sheer ludicrousness, but I did want to comment on a couple of things.

The first the idea that having a very, very few fat people in roles that aren’t overtly about ridiculing them will somehow make everyone WANT to be fat – ASPIRE to be fat, even.  I mean, if the models at Australian Fashion Week are doing it, it makes sense that the rest of the population will follow like mindless sheep.  Never mind that those models were only used in one show, and that was for a plus-size label.

According to Suzie:

… it just doesn’t make any sense to also be sending the message that it’s not only OK to be fat, it’s a sign of self-empowerment.

Suzie dear, I think you may be seriously confused if you thinks that encouraging self-esteem in fat people is the same as encouraging people to get fat as a form of self-empowerment.

Oh, but self-empowerment is not ok:

But the discourse of self-empowerment surrounding the move is stopping us asking why so many young people are size 16 or more in the first place.

I’m thinking that if staying under a size 16 requires shaming and social ostracism, maybe a better question is how the limits of ‘acceptable’ bodies are defined and policed, not how we come to exceed them.

And then there’s this doozy:

Alarmingly, a new Australian study of more than 30,000 people shows obese and morbidly obese men are less depressed and less suicidal than those of a normal weight.

Hang on, WHAT?  It’s ALARMING that fat people aren’t depressed and suicidal?   We’ve been given Fashion and Fat Models and that has somehow made us all forget that we’re intrinsically worthless and should just kill ourselves quickly so the good thin folk don’t have to pay for us while we malinger?  WHAT?

Yeah, fuck you, Susie O’Brien.