It’s Our Destiny: “Body Shaming”
Starring Founding Mother, Destiny Stuttgart
Shame on you, Hadrian! Shame! According to the first of many polls held by our recently founded psychological medical association, Body Shaming is a common practice amongst our citizens. How is this making a good beginning for our country? We founded Hadrian on the principle of love, acceptance and understanding. We all swore an oath of fidelity to Hadrian’s core value, to treat one another with respect, according to each human the dignity. We all deserve it. So, I ask you, how does a personal ad on Hadrian’s wave stating ‘no fatties’ illustrate our culture of tolerance?
Comments like this and others demeaning to a person’s physical appearance only serve to isolate those of us who are more robust than the average. Not only do many of these ads attack heavyset individuals, I’ve also noticed ageism runs rampant: ‘no wrinkles,’ ‘no grey beards,’ ‘no saggy tits,’ ‘no pizza face.’ Statements like these are very hurtful. They diminish a person’s self-esteem, which often leads to depression and suicidal behaviour. Individuals fearing weight gain may take desperate measures to lose pounds resulting in eating disorders like bulimia and anorexia. Others may start taking unreliable diet pills, which, more times than not, are harmful to the health of the user. Older men and women feel pressured to dye away the grey, which often requires the use of chemicals harmful to our environment. And, then there is the costly measure of cosmetic surgery. Hadrian’s medical system, the finest in the world, does not help cover the cost of face-lifts, liposuction, Botox, or other such cosmetic surgeries. Rather than shame your fellow citizens into looking ‘perfect’-a human state impossible to attain-learn to love and accept your fellow human in the body’s natural state.
The hardest-hit members of our community are young men. Gentlemen, your bodies are beautiful the way they are. Too many of you lament over hair loss, but it is a natural part of the ageing process. A man does not need a full head of hair to be gorgeous. Nor should he be required to sport a six-pack into his sixties. We need to learn to accept one another without judgment.
Adding to this inexhaustible list, we have the intolerable notion of ‘slut shamming!’ Although slut-shaming is a category unto itself, we can still connect it with body-shaming as it is an attack on an individual’s clothing style, how one holds their body, even how one elects to move. We formed Hadrian, have come together as a collective, to shoulder our support for one another, not continue abusing and oppressing our fellow citizens with outdated and outlandish moral notions.
With that in mind, we need first to learn to love ourselves. When you shame yourself, you are opening the floodgates for others to shame you as well. In a sense, self-condemnation – “I’m too fat, I’m too skinny, my face is wrinkled, I’m too tall, I’m too short, my nose is too big” – the daily uttered list of self-recrimination is inexhaustible, and this self-loathing translates into the minds of others as an acceptance of forcing impossible standards on everyone. In a sense, when you condemn yourself, you condemn humanity. Mocking another individual is s slap in the face of humanity. The old Christian saw, “do unto others as you would have them do unto you” is still true to this day, but it needs amending – “treat yourself in the same fashion as you would treat others.” With those two concepts working hand in hand, we can move towards a stronger and healthier humanity.
Good Night Hadrian, and remember, love yourself, love your neighbours, love all humanity.
We do it to ourselves often enough. Allowing/permission others to unduly ‘influence’ is the real problem. DO what is needed for yourself, that means ‘be who you are’. It is YOUR choice, not some other person.
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