I have to say that Candy Crowley did a pretty good job of being tough in the most recent presidential debate. And it’s no surprise that some folks are pretty up in arms about the fact that she did her job and told the leader of the free world and the man who is competing for that position to sit down and be quiet at times. And there is some concern that she added information to the debate when perhaps she should not have.
But most people seem to agree that she did a much better job of managing the dialog between two of the world’s most powerful men than had been seen in the first debate. So are people on Facebook singing her praises? Is the Twitterverse glowing with her awesomeness? Well yes, and then again no. Because what some people feel the need to talk about right now is Candy Crowley’s weight.
Here’s one post I ran across on Facebook:
Since it’s the 21st Century, why do we even need Moderators? Siri can ask the questions, refrain from interrupting, and 5 seconds after the red timer light goes on, cut off the speaker’s mike. Also, we can save the Rain Forest from devastation by not having to raise all the beef cattle necessary to feed Sliders in the hospitality tent to Candy Crowley.
I found this truly offensive, so I said “This is offensive”. Here’s the response I got:
LOL! I think the above two responses are even funnier than the original post (wink). Talk about what’s wrong with America! We need a tickle prison for people who live by strict PC rules; maybe enough laughter will lighten them up. And I’m not talking about their weight.
And this one:
She’s a big fatty, and she’s demonstrably biased towards Democrats, that’s enough for me.
Okay here’s the thing. Declaring that a debate moderator is biased towards one political party may or may not be true in this case. But at least the question is relevant to the discussion at hand. What does the fact that she’s a big fatty have to do with the price of fish in Finland? Nothing. It’s just a form of hate speech against an extremely intelligent, successful and powerful woman that someone is pretty sure they will get away with. It’s a cheap shot, and it’s lazy thinking. But it’s so pervasive in our society that people are appalled when called out on it.
I don’t want to dwell a great deal more on this particular Facebook exchange. What I really want to talk about is the idea that a woman can ever be powerful enough, successful enough, or strong enough in this world to avoid being called a “fatty, fatty 2×4”? Is there ever a moment that she’s free from this sort of playground harassment? Based on what I see coming through on my Facebook feed, I’d have to say no.
And I’m not saying this to depress you. I’m saying this to make a different point.
For many years I lived under the delusion that if I were smart enough and funny enough and successful enough and dressed well enough, and so on, I would finally be free from childish taunting about my weight. But at a certain point I realized that I won’t ever be “good enough” to avoid this kind of nonsense. I had to learn to deal with it when it came at me. And I have to work to change the world. Because I’m unlikely to permanently change my size to a level that’s acceptable, and I can’t change the rest of me enough to make this kind of mindless, petty, playground nonsense not happen to me.
And you know what? This afforded me a freedom of a sort. I started focusing my energy on getting what I really wanted in life rather than avoiding pain. I realized that I had no moral obligation to be jolly and I only needed to be funny when I really wanted to.
You don’t have to be nice all the time. You don’t have to be funny or jolly. You don’t have to be tame or quiet or good. Pain will happen anyways. People will say stupid things anyways. So you might as well be the person you always wanted to be. And join me and my colleagues in our quest to make the world a better place for people of all sizes.
The Fat Chick
P.S. Why not start by joining The Fat Chick Clique? It’s free and it’s liberating!