Let me be perfectly clear: After braving 20 minutes of one episode, I no longer watch Here Comes Honey Boo Boo and I don’t think I’ve ever seen an episode of Behar’s The View, but when Joy Behar says that Honey Boo Boo, whose real name is Alana Thompson is going to grow up to be big and fat, I know that something is not right. And I’ve seen the comments on Joy’s comment go both ways.
Some claim that as an adult Joy shouldn’t be picking on children. Others think that Joy is absolutely right, that the combination of Alana’s genetics and eating habits is a recipe for weight gain.
Neither one of those points is really important to me.
What bothers me in the way that Joy expressed herself is the implicit acknowledgement that being a “big fat woman” is the worst fate that can await a young girl. Or any woman, for that matter. The image that it conjures in the collective mind is a clear one.
She will be big and fat. She will be lazy. She will not be attractive. Add your own stereotype here.
We hear what Joy says and we’re either nodding in agreement or we’re defending a 7 year old against her insults.
But why don’t we call her out on her prejudice? Why don’t we tell her that we know women who are big and fat that we love and admire and are inspired by. Why don’t we tell her that it is hard enough to raise daughters in this day and age without the threat of “big fat woman” being dangled over their heads.
I have a feeling we don’t do it because it’s easier not to. Because we’re exhausted from fighting too many other battles on behalf of our children. Because it’s easier not to.
But sometimes, enough is enough.
Because we don’t want our children to grow up to be narrow-minded bigots.
Photo source: Wiki
Also, follow her on Twitter, where she never refers to herself in the third person, but does have a potty mouth. Sorry!
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