Q: You hate-spewing, body-image-fascism-promoting ASSHOLE. I’m a large woman. I read your two incredibly offensive columns about “girl love handles” and the supposed “health risks” of obesity. How dare you oppress women, large and small, with your judgments! Maybe if you enjoyed putting something in your mouth every once in a while that wasn’t cock, Mr. Skin and Boners, you would see things differently. At least food is supposed to go in our mouths. Why don’t you try swallowing something that wasn’t shot down your throat sometime? Food, it’s what’s for dinner. For some of us, anyway. —Large and Royally Disgusted About Savage’s Sermons
A: First off, LARDASS, you neglected to include a sign-off, forcing me to create one for you. I tried to create one that captured the spirit and tone of your letter, and I think I did pretty well. Too bad about the acronym, though, huh?
Secondly, I’m sick of talking about GLH and the obesity epidemic. I would dearly love to move on, but the mail — oh, the mail! — keeps pouring in. Some is from folks who’ve got my back (thanks, gang), but most is from ticked-off women like LARDASS here. As of this writing, I’ve received exactly 10,547 pieces of e-mail — yes, that’s the actual tally — complaining that my refusal to take the self-esteem-boosting/public-health-shredding position that you can be obese and healthy somehow oppresses women. Interestingly enough, I haven’t received a single piece of e-mail about how, say, the Food and Drug Administration oppresses women.
In December the FDA’s Reproductive Health Advisory Committee voted 23-4 in favor of making Plan B, the “morning after” birth control pill, available to women, large and small, without a prescription. Plan B is emergency contraception, and women who had a condom break on ’em or engaged in drunken unprotected sex need to be able to get their hands on it quickly. Plan B is not “regular” birth control, meaning it can’t take the place of the pill or condoms. But it is a safe and effective backup that prevents a woman from ovulating or, if a fertilized egg is already present, prevents it from attaching to the womb — the fate of half of all fertilized eggs anyway. Plan B is available to women in 100 nations and sold over the counter in 33.
Despite the recommendation of its expert panel, in May the FDA announced that it would not make Plan B available without a prescription. Why? The Bush-appointed asswipes running the FDA claimed they were concerned that Plan B couldn’t be used safely by girls between the ages of 11 and 15. (Pregnancy at 11, however, girls can handle fine.) By that standard, members of the FDA’s expert panel pointed out, no drugs would be available to anyone without a prescription. You can overdose and die on freaking Tylenol, for crying out loud. The real reason the Bushies don’t want women to get their hands on Plan B, of course, is that they don’t want women — young or old, large or small — to be able to control their own reproductive systems. That’s oppression, no?
Sorting through 10,547 outraged e-mails, I couldn’t help but wonder how many of the 10,547 of you took the time to write the FDA and complain about the Plan B decision. If you did, good for you. If you didn’t, there’s still time: You can make amends for obsessing about how my column allegedly oppresses women by calling the FDA on their actual oppression of American women. Call the bastards at the FDA at 1-888-463-6332, or send them an e-mail via the FDA’s Web site (www.fda.gov). But considering that the FDA is currently in the hands of Bush administration appointees (read: Jesus freaks and Bible-thumpers), your time might be better spent sending letters to your representatives in the U.S. House and Senate, which you can do via these two Web sites: www.house.gov and www.senate.gov.
Finally, god bless Canada for being so sensible and so close by. Days after the FDA refused to approve Plan B, the Canadian government announced that Canadians will soon be able to enjoy over-the-counter Plan B along with their gay marriages, socialized medicine and decriminalized pot.
Q: How dare you spew your hateful bile! It’s hate speech like yours that causes violence toward fat womyn. I stand a glorious 5-foot-2 and weigh a beautiful 450 pounds. My fellow sisters and I apologize to no one for our looks. We were born this way. THE HATE MUST STOP! —Big Womyn
A: First off, you were born 5-foot-2, 450 pounds? Did your mother burst like a seedpod?
Second, enough already! Christ! I am thoroughly annoyed at having my tame statements of fact — being heavy is a health risk; rolls of exposed flesh are unsightly — characterized as “hate speech.” (Particularly by people who, like LARDASS, fill their letters complaining about my hate speech with juvenile taunts about my burning hunger for cock.) Perhaps the problem here is that LARDASS and BW lack perspective. My comments only seem hateful to people who haven’t read anything truly hateful about fat. Something like, say, this letter from a Brit:
Q: From a European perspective, it is both baffling and hilarious to read the vitriolic, pious, unhinged views that the whole fat “thing” provokes in the USA. To all but a tiny handful of Europeans it is so self-evident as to preclude all possible debate that being anything above about a size 16 (which translates to a size 10/12 in the United States, I believe) makes you a lardy, lazy, ugly, unhealthy, sweaty, smelly, unfuckable, unattractive, unwanted piece of soon-to-die-early shit. Babies in prams will cheerfully tell you this. Their parents will fail to reprove them for it. Shit, even the sensible fatties grin and fess up. “Just love food,” they’ll tell you. “Know it’s killing me, but hey. Life sucks.”
I smoke 20 fags a day but I don’t feel the need to convince the world that I’m actually a sweet-smelling, enlightened, nonaddicted, attractive, healthy guy. I’m a smelly, sick addict on the way to a coronary. Wish it weren’t so, but hey. Life sucks. Only myself to blame. Seems to me that the problem with the fat issue in the United States isn’t that people are fat (which they undeniably are: I’ve never seen such a collection of sweaty porkers as I see in the USA when I visit), but that they’re so goddamned crazy and angry about being fat. —Smelly United Kingdom Smoker
A: First, let the record show that I disagree with almost everything in SUKS’ letter. That’s hate speech and I condemn it. Roundly. Uh ... soundly. I condemn it soundly, not roundly. Ahem.
Second, presuming they didn’t both die of strokes as they read SUKS’ letter, I hereby invite LARDASS and BW to write SUKS angry letters — letters which I will happily forward directly to him after you cc me the angry letters you two sent to the FDA about the Plan B decision.Send letters to firstname.lastname@example.org