Got a (fat) bone to pick with Brit journalist

I’ve always had a thing for the Brits and their no holds barred style of journalism.
What passes for ordinary chatter across the pond often lands my colleagues here in the states on the wrong side of the “political correctness” spectrum.
So much for free speech.
But even the Brits draw the line somewhere.
And it’s got to be somewhere this side of the Daily Mail and its expert dietician, Monica Greenfell.
Greenfell’s London newspaper column has kept bloggers in business this past week for her shocking comments on 17-year-old Chloe Marshall, the first size 16 beauty queen to make it to the Miss England competition.
Photos of the 5-foot-10 brunette are enough to make any woman with a bit of sense mad with jealousy. She’s tall, curvy with a bright smile and cute upturned nose.
In a word, she’s gorgeous.
But Ms. Greenfell announced late last week Chloe Marshall “is fat and she got that way by over-eating.”
What’s more, she opined that Marshall claiming the Miss England crown would be tantamount to sending “an appalling – and very dangerous – message to other young women that it’s OK to be fat.”
Stop the presses!
Apparently there are fat girls out there. Really? I hadn’t noticed.
Because walking down the street clutching my 2-year-old daughter’s hand, I’ve been watching all the girls with the barely-there jeans hanging off their bony hips and wondering, “who let them go out like that?”
It’s true that childhood obesity in America is skyrocketing, and there are plenty of fat kids out there who need some help before Type 2 diabetes sets in, followed by high cholesterol and a heart problem.
But I was a teenage girl once – not that long ago.
My daughter will be a teenage girl – not too far in the future.
And I won’t be letting “experts” like Ms. Greenfell anywhere near her.
Because what’s most upsetting about her comments isn’t her misplaced notion that curvy equals fat. In general, I remind people to lay the faults of an article at the feet of the newspaper, not the reporter. Because we write what we are assigned – except in the case of an opinion column (like this one!).
So I point my finger – albeit a fat one – at the Daily Mail, which hired a so-called “expert” to peddle a misguided opinion, presenting it as “fact” from a dietician.
Want to know why the media is so often blamed for the high numbers of anorexia and bulimia, numbers that fail to reflect the thousands of girls who keep the diseases hidden from their loved ones?
Read last week’s Daily Mail – it’s still available online – and you’ll see why.
Because a plus-sized beauty with a healthy self-esteem and a positive outlook on both eating and exercising can’t escape the time-honored tradition of picking on the fat kid.

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