5/25/11

Dangerous Curves.


Our society swings wildly between a 'love your body' ideal and a pervasive conviction that a slender, nubile body is the sum of perfection.


And it's unhealthy.

I recently started a diet again. I'm not gonna lie, I've gained more than my fair share of weight in the past year and a half, living off of McDoubles like I thought my hips wouldn't notice.

FALSE. That did not happen. They totally noticed.

But as much as I hate being out of shape, I can't help but feel angered when I read items like this article from Yahoo, highlighting the fact that overweight women are discriminated against more than any other group. Social commentators are now recognizing the fact that people judge overweight women more harshly than other groups considered 'minority groups' because overweight people should be able to control their weight problems.

Don't get me wrong. Backing away from the ho-hos and ding-dongs and actively pursuing physical health is ALWAYS a good idea, and there is much to be said for controlling one's urges to indulge in gluttony. After all, gluttony is listed in the Bible as a sin. Clearly, God has an opinion on self control.

But is it really fair for overweight people to command lower wages than everyone else?

Furthermore, is it really fair to ban overweight people from public establishments, like this club in London or this nail salon in Georgia?

Or worse, is it really okay for healthcare providers to discriminate against heavy people? Is there an excuse for any doctor to say it's 'not worth it' to treat overweight people? Obese people are most likely to be misdiagnosed, given inappropriate dosages, or untreated for diseases like cancer - until the cancer is untreatable.

Christians are taught to 'love the sinner, hate the sin'. It's a precept as firm and established as the knowledge that God is love. People of ALL shapes and sizes are deserving of His love, His grace, and His blessings. A person's stumble over controlling an unhealthy eating habit doesn't mean that he or she is less moral, less honorable, or less worthy.

Bad habits can easily cross into sin territory. But not every habit has consequences that become visible to others, and that's where our society tends to blur the lines between what IS right, and what LOOKS right, just like Christians tend to judge sins with obvious consequences more harshly.

Is it better to be a slender, cocaine addicted, anorexic woman? Or an overweight woman?

Is it better to secretly struggle with porn, or to have sex with multiple partners and become pregnant?

Everyone faces struggles. No one person is so good that he or she doesn't have need of grace. Does that mean that everything is okay, as long as we all admit our equality? Not at all. Grace isn't an excuse to quit the battle. It's a reason to keep fighting.

And it's a reminder that NO ONE has the right to cast the first stone.

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