If you're looking for a happy, sunshine-filled post about fashion, film, or food... come back tomorrow.
Before blaming advertising agencies and the Media, let's take responsibility for our own shallowness (we ALL have it) and really think about why and where each generation learns this attitude year after year.
And so.... the post:
If you haven't seen/heard/read already, Abercrombie & Fitch CEO Mike Jeffries doesn't want fat people in his store.
I can sum up my reaction in two words:
Though Jeffries could've picked better wording for his extremely blunt statements, he just summarized the marketing tactics for pretty much the entire Universe, not to mention vocalized the opinion of many in the Fashion Industry. People respond positively to thin, attractive individuals in advertisements. "People" as in you and me. When was the last time you saw a chubby or "unattractive" actor in a commercial that wasn't the butt of some joke or promoting weight-loss. The GoDaddy Geek is the most recognizable example at the moment. And it's usually a larger male actor over a female-- no one wants to see a fat chick.
Do "good-looking people attract other good-looking people?" Yes!
I would say I'm shocked at the amount of thin people in an uproar about this but then I remembered... people who've been thin the entirety of their lives know little about the scope of exclusion and judgment we plus-size peeps have endured for years. They can sympathize but they can't empathize.
For members of the "Fat" community, it's just another fucking day. Get over it.
Oh sure, places like Gap and American Eagle have "plus" sizes (and that wasn't always the case btw), but for big people that clothing runs small. An 18 at Gap is around a 14 at Lane Bryant or Torrid. Even the Target 3x is more like a 1x at those stores. Quite the technique to claim offering plus sizes while still leaving out the truly large. That's what actual fat people deal with.
Fortunately, Fashion has evolved in the last 10 years, offering more specialized websites and designers that realize big people want to look good too, even if it is pricey. Many a tear I shed in the dressing rooms while shopping as a kid because the "Women's" sections at department stores never offered the trends my friends wore, not until LB, Torrid, and websites like Simply Be took off.
If it bothers you personally, feel free to boycott the place but to me you're just chasing windmills (Man of La Mancha anyone?). I've never cared for or noticed Abercrombie & Fitch's clothing in the first place: it looks like generic preppy wear (yawn). However, we excluded fatties will fight our own battles without indignant thin people saying "I can wear their clothes but for you I won't." No need to make sacrifices for me, thanks.
Of course there are exceptions. Good-looking and fat people can be friends and there are plenty of thin teenagers who aren't part of the "In" crowd. But as a generalization, Jeffries' statements bear a lot of truth.
No, the hypocrisy of Jeffries using terms like "unattractive" when he's a living, breathing Plastic Surgery Monster is not lost on me.
It's the work of a bully or someone who was bullied so much he became one himself, but railing against Abercrombie & Fitch won't stop the bullying.
If you want to fight for inclusion over exclusion, for kids to accept peers for who they are and not what they look like, forget about retailers and marketers. Their job is appealing to the masses based on surveys and statistics. In other words, this bullying tactic comes from the Abercrombie & Fitch demographic. The fight to end bullying starts at home.
Child intelligence is far underrated: they observe and absorb everything. So if you're punishing little Jenny for calling little David "fat" you can't laugh at this: