Just when it looked like perhaps Lady Gaga was the only strong woman in the spotlight speaking out about the ever-present dangers of bullying ... along came La Crosse, Wisconsin news anchor Jennifer Livingston! The overnight heroine is making headlines for firing back at a local man named Kenneth Krause, who claimed to be "concerned" about the "message" Jennifer is sending to the community by being "obese." (He also seemed to feel she was doing a specific disservice to "young girls" ... which is just plain sexist and sick.) In other words, he was fat-shaming Jennifer. But as a mom of three girls, she wasn't going to stand for it.
The support for Jennifer has been absolutely incredible! And being that it became such a suddenly major, national story, Jennifer's network, WKBT, did a follow-up, in which Jennifer sat down for a Q&A ... and they extended an offer to Krause to submit a follow-up statement. Check out what he had to say for himself ...
His statement is at the end of this segment (around 4:10), but of course you'll want to see what Jennifer had to say in the interview that comes first ...
Wow. Can you BELIEVE this guy?! After hearing what Jennifer had to say, that is what he comes up with? Saying he hopes she'll "transform herself over the the next year"? Excuse me? What a total douche.
More from The Stir: Weight Loss Companies Prey on Women's Greatest Fears
Sadly, Krause's narrow-minded, prejudiced perspective is an attitude disease we have in this country. Yes, we have an obesity epidemic, but far too many people seem to miss one of the incredibly valuable points Jennifer Livingston made, which is that when it comes to weight, we cannot judge a book by its cover.
The idea that an overweight -- or even obese by a doctor's chart standards -- person could be at the same time in perfectly acceptable health, even BETTER health than a "skinny" peer is one of those health anomalies that positively confounds people. Just like how looking at a thin woman, you might never guess that she has 30 percent body fat, because she eats like crap and just happens to have a Road Runner-fast metabolism. You might not think she suffers from high blood sugar and is at risk for type 2 diabetes because she guzzles gallons of soda every day.
On the other hand, I know plenty of women who look like Jennifer Livingston who happen to steer clear of junk, eat organic whole foods, understand portion control, and exercise, but whose genes simply will not allow for them to look like stick figures. Women who, on paper, might be 100 times healthier than someone who on the outside looks the part of the Fitter Woman. Medical research even proves it.
Still, people can't wrap their heads around the idea of the words "overweight" and "healthy" going together. Well, consider the wise words of The Fat Nutritionist: "Fat doesn’t equal lazy or ugly or even, necessarily, unhealthy." When people like Kenneth Krause start getting that through their thick skulls, we might finally begin to make some progress with not just the health care challenges we're facing in this country, but the gratuitous weight-shaming that has nothing to do with a concern for health and everything to do with discrimination, intolerance, and hate.
How do you feel about Krause's follow-up statement? Do you believe it's possible to be overweight and healthy?
Image via news8000.com