Kath Read and Fat Shaming by Strangers, Why is this OK?

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Kath Read

I came across a story of Fat Heffalump blogger and fat activist, Kath Read, telling the story of being photographed in public by strangers. Not because they thought she was awesome and gorgeous and just couldn’t resist asking her for a photo, but because they wanted to make fun of her size and the way she looks and sneak cell phone pics of her. WHAT. THE. F***????!!! Seriously??? Where they do that at? Strangers have even shouted “Fat B*tch!” at her as she walks by. My blood was boiling reading this story.

Kath talks of a time when she turned the tables on a photo snapping stranger:

“People do photograph me a lot. There was a guy at Roma St train station one day and he was p*ssed that I had taken his photo. The look on his face was like ‘how dare you!’”

Really? So, let me get this straight. It’s OK for you to snap pics of her but not OK for her to snap pics of you? *blank stare* Sir, I need you to have several seats. Kath, continue to do you boo and brush them haters off.

I tip my hat off to Kath who admits it makes her angry, but she is not letting it change her bright colorful and fun clothing style. She gives no Fs about these people who want to bully her on the street. I have to say she is better than me. I would cuss them out, cry, fight them and take their picture all at the same damn time. I love that Kath is not letting these people steal her shine and that she continues to be herself, BUT, I still can’t wrap my mind around people thinking its OK to do this, having the NERVE to do this and getting away with it! Fat shaming has gotten out of pocket.
Kath Read
This whole thing led me to ponder a time when my aunt was made fun of in public for her weight by a group of teenage boys when I was a child and I cussed them out! Bullying is my biggest pet peeve next to racism and I have NO TOLERANCE for it. But, I’m curious…

How many of you have experienced bullying for your weight by strangers in public? How often does this happen to you? Have you seen this happen to someone else in public?

Photo credit: Josh Woning/Courier Mail AU

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  1. I have be on the receiving end of some hurtful comments all my life, from strangers, to classmates, to co-workers and family who think they are doing me a favor, by “having a little talk.” It hasn’t been constant, and confusing and stinging me when it comes out-of-the=blue. I’m a large-framed person: broad-shouldered, heavily muscled, large-busted. I wear a straight size 16. What I find stunningly bizarre is that I have worn 20W, and the less fat I carry the MORE I hear negative comments! It’s as if you are standing on the edge of the ocean and people feel that they can somehow save you from drowning in fatness. When I was at my heaviest, I rarely heard remarks directly about my size. I would receive very specific, pointed compliments about earrings and hair or the old “pretty face” that seemed to carry a silent under-current of dear, I’m trying to be nice and prop you up even though you are obese and I pity you. Any talk now about fitness activities carries some unwanted cheerleading to “keep going” no matter that I’d just clocked an hour of intense workout. Compliments about clothes are lovely, but I don’t know what to say to people when they assume I shop in only plus size stores (“Oh my cousin loves LB, you must too.) (Lovely people who have been subjected to much worse abuse, please understand I share this only to point out this odd experience. I have only slightly glimpsed the nightmares some of you have lived.)

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