Monday, April 7, 2008

A Stricter Standard For Women - Perish The Thought!

The New York Times website posted this article about weight bias. Basically, it says that women are scrutinized more harshly for weight and discriminated against at lower weights than men are. After weight gain, women receive more bias than men. Also, we receive it after a smaller gain (women only have to gain about 15 pounds to be discriminated against, men have to gain about 60).


Why do you think we have shows like King of Queens? Do you ever think we'd see a show with a heavy woman and a thin, attractive husband? Has there even BEEN an overweight female protagonist on TV since Roseanne?

I can tell this by living my life. I've been in the process of losing weight, and how I am treated is slightly better as I get smaller. Salespeople and waitstaff are nicer to me, people don't talk down to me as much, men look more, etc. I'm still considered "fat" but I'm smaller than I was and it's improved. It's really stupid, since I'm the same person I was 6 months ago, just with a little less meat.

Yes, this study is flawed. Self-report isn't the most reliable method of research. But I don't doubt the truth of the results. I've also seen this other study: this woman, who was thin to average, went into a store and looked around, and took note of how the salespeople treated her, how many greeted her, etc. She then went back to the same store a few minutes later wearing a fat suit and measured the same people and how they treated to her. It's probably no surprise that the same people were ruder to her and paid less attention when she was in the fat suit than when she was her thin self. At least after that was over she got to take off her suit and be treated nicely again. We don't all have that option. Fat suits are like blackface.

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