Skinny Americans have had it with their overweight countrymen, and will no longer take being put-or, in the case of airplane accommodations, sat-upon without protest. “I am completely and utterly frustrated with rising healthcare costs due to the deluge of fat Americans taxing the healthcare system. I’m in shape and have been all my life because I don’t soothe myself with food all day,” says one angry thinnie, and he is echoed by a host of others whose pride in their self-control (and good genetics, although that goes unsaid) is a major factor in the derision they pour upon their tubby neighbors like so much corn syrup down a fat man’s gullet. But there is another reason beyond physical discomfort in confined spaces or the unpleasant experience of having to see an avalanche of muffin tops on every corner that is fueling the war on the weighty.
“In our society, being heavy has become more of a stigma lately because we’re struggling with other issues of consumption,” says Abigail Saguy, associate professor of sociology at UCLA.
The economic climate, a recent history of people buying more than they can afford as well as environmental issues, including the depletion of our planet’s resources, are making people feel more angry about society’s overconsumption, she says. Obviously overweight people are an easy target.
“They’re almost a caricature of greed, overconsumption, overspending, over-leveraging and overusing resources,” says Saguy. “Though it’s not entirely rational, it’s an understandable reaction, especially in a country founded on the Puritan ethics of self-reliance, sacrifice and individual responsibility. If people feel they’re sacrificing, then see someone spilling over an airplane seat, they feel angry that that person is not making the same sacrifices they are.”
That’s right, lardass, every time you reach for that box of Snackwells that you will eat in one sitting-assuming you have some kind of furniture large enough to allow your massive carcass to attain a recumbent position-you are KILLING THE PLANET. Or at least that’s what the skinny people think, and we all know how virtuous they are.