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Fat Bias is Alive and Well and Thriving in the Land of Sushi

Aug 13, 2008
Fahrenheit Four-Fatty-One. Handmaid's Ass. As it turns out anti-utopia is happening right now in Japan of all places. We're sure you are wondering why we sound so hysterical. It's because we ARE hysterical. Hold on while we slap each other (Ouch.) We're in a tizzy because (Stop it Laura! ONE slap is enough to quell a temper fit.)...we're having the vapors because we just read - in the NEW YORK TIMES - that, in Japan, weight terrorism has begun.

Under a new law that they passed companies and local government now not only can but must measure the waistlines of their employees and citizens. If your waist is above the legal limit you get "re-education." We're pretty sure that means they can get D.W.E (Driving While Eating) convictions. What on earth will they do to people who accidentally slip and eat a donut before they get measured? Yoichi Ogushi, a professor at Tokai University's School of Medicine was quoted saying that the Japanese were all too thin to need this new law but that in the US there are so many people over 100 kilos that it would be useful. (100 kilos is about 220 pounds). On the upside we now have some clue as to how much a kilo is. We still have no idea how many pounds in a stone - which is how they do your weight in England ("That cow - she's 25 stone!")

Still, learning a few numbers isn't really enough to set our minds to rest on this one. Are there some obscure lines in the Patriot Act we don't know about yet? Is it possible that we live in a world where they have marketed us into our size 22's and that they now plan to make a killing fining us for our flub? Is all that white flour and corn syrup they hide in our food really just a long term plan to get our money? In Japan, if their employees don't lose the poundage, the companies get fined. How do you spell fired? As if it isn't already hard enough to get a job in a society that, while banning all other kinds of bias, tolerates and even encourages weight bias? They will also, in Japan, fine the local governments where the thick waisted people work, contribute and raise their children. Can there be any greater way to foster hate crimes than billing tax payers because their neighbors binged on Pepperidge Farm and Hagan Daz? Oh....we has the willies on this one!

Oh yeah. We're steamed (not fried.) In the NY Times article they go on to say that in Japan they don't say you are "fat." They say you are "metabo." They say the word makes it easier for people to hear. Maybe this comment will make it easier for them to hear: B-FABs (Beautiful Fat Ass Babes) say you can take your "metabo" and ram it! The article suggests that some experts say that the Japanese government guidelines are so extreme that it will be almost impossible to meet them. They say that some people there think the real purpose of the anti-metabo laws are so they can eventually shift the health care costs from public to private funds. Are you starting to get the chills now too? Did you see Michael Moore's movie "Sicko?" It is so easy to imagine that insurance companies would leap at a chance to blame us for our illnesses and refuse to cover anything for anyone bigger than the Olsen Twins - either one.

Has there ever been a greater need for us B-FABs to bond? We need our own big-ass Washington Lobby. We volunteer. Laura and Janette will shriek out at the first opportunity. Tell us what you want us to say. Join our B-FAB movement. Pretty soon the only safety we have will be in numbers. Everybody needs a political action group! Look at what AARP is doing for the over fifty crowd. We need to bond together to take a stand for the American metaboes! We're it. Be a B-FAB. Love yourself and everyone else can stick it.

We feel better now.
About the Author
Laura Banks and Janette Barber are the bestselling authors of Embracing Your Big Fat Ass (Atria). They write about positive body-image, weight-acceptance, self-esteem with humor. It's time to love your BFA (Big Fat Ass). Janette is a 6 time Emmy-Award winning producer/writer and Laura is a columnist at Tarot.com. Embracing Your Big Fat Ass .
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