A frail and pale Gap model sparked a torrent of controversy after the ubiquitous retailer Tweeted a photo of the waif in a plaid shirtdress.
The pastel frock wasn't the issue; the model's weight was. Those who saw the Tweet immediately urged the clothier to use "real women" in their ads. Others, demanding someone "get that girl some food," called the picture "terrifying" and likened her appearance to that of a "concentration camp inhabitant."
But one defender of the Tweet stated that his wife is incredibly thin and often the subject of ridicule because of her body. He stated that his spouse does not have an eating disorder but noted that, if she did, that would only make her feel worse.
His assertion makes us ask: Isn't skinny-shaming just fat-shaming in reverse and equally as damaging?
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Because we're a society that places such a high value on being trim, it's hard to imagine when we see a skinny person that their slimness might not be by choice.
But just as a heavy person might wish to be lighter, a slender person may long to have a fuller figure.
Either way, hurtful comments like the ones aimed at the model and the clothing company didn't force the Gap to pull the Tweet.
We can't help but wonder if the chain had chosen a plus-sized model, would that, too, have caused a backlash, or would she have been embraced as more representative of "real women"?
Would you prefer to see more average-sized women in ads?