A Tale of Two Offenses: Marie Claire’s Fat Hatred + Pathetic Attempts for Publicity

October 28, 2010

Dear Maura Kelly,

You’ve broken my heart. It seems as though, no matter how hard I work – NOT to carve myself up or diet myself down – but instead to love myself exactly how I am, embracing my flaws, and sweetly reminding myself of all that I have to offer, someone comes along who has the potential to pull the rug out from under all of my perceived successes and leave me anxiety ridden and plagued by self-doubt. I hate that your article has done this to me, even momentarily, because the 10 seconds between hurt and anger was enough to transport me back to my adolescence filled with misery and body hatred.

And now, fortunately, as that minor transportation into my past has come and gone, I find myself awash in anger. And this is my rebuttal:

As a fat person, I am beautiful.

As a fat person, I deserve to be loved for exactly who I am. I deserve to have a life free of public fat shaming, self hatred, fear, pain, and anxiety. I deserve to have people think that I am attractive. I deserve a sex life that exceeds my wildest expectations.

As a fat person, I deserve to believe compliments bestowed upon me.

As a fat person, I should never feel the need to cower, cover-up, make excuses for, or apologize for my body.

As a fat person, I am going to wake up in the morning, get dressed, and live the best life that I can imagine.

As a fat person, I am going to occupy thin spaces with my head held high and my heart filled with self-love.

As a fat person, I am going to publicly denounce fat hatred when I come across it.

As a fat person, I believe that it is flat out wrong to target, bully, belittle, make fun of, or injure anyone based upon their size, skin color, sexuality, ethnicity, religious values, ability, or financial status. Find something better to do, it’s 2010.

love, Mara

Dear Marie Claire,

I find your recent attempts at revitalizing your magazine nearly as horrifying as the material you are producing. I recognize that merely by writing this post, I am feeding your page views. Please not that I am not going to link to you in anyway within this post – I do not support you. I am offended by your blatant transgressions. While I do see that you are in some way trying to incorporate other voices into the debate in an attempt to fix up your little blunder, I want you to know that it is not enough.

Yes, Lesley at the Fatshionista is phenomenal, so of course her piece is too [read the original post on her blog here], but I have reached the end of my patience with you. I understand that we are in a recession, and likely your readership has taken a hit. Does that give you the right to make money off of targeting my body?  Are you really so hard done by that you need to stoop this low?

I feel badly for you. Please find a better way to earn yourself a little positive attention, instead of relying upon the shock and awe tactic you have used to dig yourself into this hole.

love, Mara