Diet Book Teaches Kids Fatties Don't Deserve Friends

Maggie Goes on a DietTell me if you've heard this one before: fat girl who is always getting picked on decides to change her life. She works out. She eats right. She loses weight. And now she's Miss Popularity and life is perfect. I know what you're thinking: straight-to-DVD movie, maybe a Lifetime feature? If only Maggie Goes on a Diet was just some piece of crap chick flick, I might let it pass.

But the new book coming out this fall from Aloha Publishers is slated for the children's section. So much for giving it a pass. Now I'm just pissed.


Author Paul Kramer was on Good Morning America this week, claiming that people are just misunderstanding the word "diet," that he needed to use it in the title because "if I entitled the book Maggie Eats Healthy, somebody in a bookstore ... is really not going to identify with someone who has been overweight, who has health problems."

Sorry, buddy, but the problem with this book has nothing to do with the title.

I have no problem explaining to my 6-year-old that we live on a "diet" of X, Y, and Z, defined in the dictionary as the "food or feed habitually eaten or provided." I do have a problem with someone telling my daughter that fat kids have no friends and skinny people are beating them off with a stick.

Call me naive, but when I heard there was a book written for kids about a girl going on a diet, I actually hoped that the publishers were going to show a lick of common sense. We have too many overweight kids in America. They could use a book about a kid like them to get them motivated. A book, that is, about a kid battling childhood obesity who tackles weight loss not to make people like them, but to feel better in their own skin.

We want our kids to be healthy. Because it ensures a longer, more comfortable life. Because no one makes a baby and says, "Gee, I can't wait for her to develop -- take your pick -- diabetes, heart disease, difficulty walking, difficulty breathing" ... What kind of parent wants a trim, fit kid because she will be popular?

Does this book bother you? Is it the title or is it the entire storyline?


Image via Amazon

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